Blogging Science: Snow eating now endangered kid pleasure

Blogging Science: Snow eating now endangered kid pleasure

Carrie McBride
Mar 5, 2008

Don't panic - this article's headline is misleading. Eating snow is not dangerous, but a recent study took a closer look at what kids are ingesting when they eat snow. As reported in Science, snow, even in relatively pristine places like the Yukon, contains large amounts of bacteria. Luckily our stomachs, extremely acidic environments, are equipped to kill such bacteria.

Although it may not be reassuring, Dr. Penelope Dennehy of the American Academy of Pediatrics committee on infectious diseases, reminds us that, "It's a very ubiquitous bacteria that's everywhere...Basically, none of the food we eat is sterile. We eat bacteria all the time."

So how much snow is okay to eat? Small children whose diet is primarily formula will have less acid in their stomaches and should not eat snow. For everyone else, catching snowflakes on your tongue is certainly fine, a "meal of snow" should be avoided.

Read more here.

(photo by the AP.)

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