How Many Germs Transfer During Kissing?

Remco Kort, author of the kissing study, stands near his Kiss-O-Meter developed for the Micropia museum (Huffington Post)

Remco Kort, author of the kissing study, stands near his Kiss-O-Meter developed for Amsterdam’s Micropia museum (Huffington Post)

Happy Friday! Germs are everywhere. Some germs are good (probiotics), and some germs are bad (E. coli).

But some germs are just sort of there, waiting to be unleashed from us. Like when we’re kissing someone else.

A recent study published in “Microbiome” found that a whopping 80 million germs are exchanged during a French kiss. And this is only if the kiss lasts only 10 seconds.

Scientists from the Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research (TNO) had 21 couples visiting the Artis Royal Zoo kiss for the aforementioned amount of time, and collected saliva from each participant before and after the kiss. One partner then drank a probiotic yogurt before kissing again, and scientists again collected samples.

The study found that the microbes from any couples’ mouths resulted in similar strains of bacteria than from any two random strangers’ mouths. We often hear that long-term couples begin to resemble each other, and now that’s proven to be the case on the inside as well.

But these germs might not be only bad for us. Study author Remco Kort said that diversifying one’s microbes could actually result in better health.

Sounds like a great case for kissing a lot of different people, right? Now get out there and boost your health!



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