The study – published in the Journal of Food Research – tested how much bacteria is transferred when it comes time to make a wish, and the results might make you reconsider a slice.
After consuming a party staple, pizza, participants were tasked with blowing out the candles on a cake. The icing samples collected were then tested for bacterial contamination. Cakes coated in a fine crop of saliva had 1400% more bacteria present, in comparison to those that went spray-free.
But before you forgo the sweet treat, you should know that the extra lubricant is unlikely to affect you all that much. Our mouths are chock full of bacteria but most of them are not harmful.
Paul Dawson, co-author of the study, told the Atlantic, “In reality if you did this 100,000 times, then the chance of getting sick would probably be very minimal.”