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Keep Your Fridge Fresh

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You stock your refrigerator on a weekly basis, but how often do you clean it out? That question turns out to be more important than you may think.

A new study out of New York’s Baruch College found that Americans often eat spoiled or past-due foods at home when available. The study's authors explain that is because people give more value to things that they own, since no consumer would ever purchase such unhealthy meals.

The Baruch team gave 165 people a yogurt smoothie that was past its “best if enjoyed by” date but was still safe to eat, but only half of the subjects were told the yogurt was theirs to keep. Thirty-eight percent of those in this latter group were willing to drink the smoothie either right then or later, but only 13 percent of the students who didn’t “own” the yogurt were willing to drink the smoothie. Those who were told to keep their smoothie were also less likely to think it would make them sick.

“Our research suggests that consumers may underestimate the risk associated with using products past their expiration dates, and for some products, this might have a negative consequence,” concludes the study's authors.

In other words, you're better off safe than sorry. Even if you don't think you'll eat spoiled food, it's a good idea to clean out your fridge once a week.

About The Author

David Schipper – David began writing for CorePerformance.com in 2008, after spending six years at Men's Health magazine digging up the newest scientific research in health, weight loss, nutrition, muscle and cardiovascular fitness.

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Tags: Nutrients, Energy, Health, Cooking, Disease, Food