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Study: Fist Bumps Spread Fewer Germs

Jamie Squire, Getty Images

NEW YORK (AP) — When it comes to preventing the spread of germs, maybe the president is on to something with his fondness for fist bumps.

A new study found that a quick fist bump spreads only one-twentieth the amount of bacteria that a handshake does. That’s even better than a high-five, which passes along less than half the amount as a handshake.

What makes the fist bump more sanitary? The researchers say mostly it’s the smaller amount of surface area in contact between the two hands.

Researchers at Aberystwyth University in Wales did the study. It was published online Monday in the American Journal of Infection Control.

The fist bump has been popularized in recent years by athletes and by President Barack Obama.

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