Is It Safe to Eat Oranges in the Shower?
Is It Safe to Eat Oranges in the Shower? We Fact-Checked TikTok's Latest Trend
In your daily dose of "What will TikTok make me do next?" it seems as if the FYP is convincing some people to eat oranges in the shower. Supporters of the trend claim it "eliminates any worry of making a mess," and the shower's humidity "exaggerates the taste and smell [of the orange]." Plus, the smell of citrus has been linked to stress relief.
Before judgement rolls in, a quick scan of the comments on a TikTok with over 7.2 million views proves that this idea isn't as far-fetched as it may originally seem. For example, "In Morocco when we go to the Hammam (bath houses) everybody brings clementines/oranges to eat. Also prevents you from fainting," one user wrote. Bathhouses, in particular, can get pretty hot and steamy, which can cause lightheadedness. "If the water's too hot in a bath or hot tub, your blood pressure may dip too low, which can make you feel dizzy or lightheaded," per Harvard Health Publishing.
Another reason for snacking on an orange midshower? The steam from the shower can apparently enhance the taste and aroma of the fruit, therefore making the eating experience more pleasurable. People also recommend not just eating the orange, but really digging into it like an animal feasting on flesh. (Reddit's words, not mine.)
"The whole point is that it's primal," one Reddit user explained. "It's not about the orange, it's not about the shower, it's about the connection to your inner feral animal. I urge you, next time you have an orange in the shower, don't peel! Tear into it with your claws, feast on the flesh, don't worry about making sure you eat all the orange or what you do with the peel afterwards. If you're thinking, you're already doing it wrong."
Replying to @rxskiii oranges are just better eaten this way. #HolidayOREOke #oranges #fyp #relatable #foryou #explore #seekdiscomfort♬ JD Agri Photography - Jack📸🚜
With #ShowerOrange going viral, POPSUGAR spoke with food safety experts about the latest TikTok trend.
"I would say as long as you are clean and your shower is clean, and you're not ingesting any soap or chemicals along with the orange that it probably actually is safer to eat in the shower," Julianna Coughlin, MS, registered dietitian, says, adding that it's probably safer than the kitchen where there is likely more germs that have accumulated on the counter space.
The protective coating of the peel can make all the difference. "The rind of the orange keeps the interior relatively free of microorganisms, so there would not be any contamination already present," Bryan Quoc Le, PhD, food scientist and author of "150 Food Science Questions Answered," tells POPSUGAR. Plus, shower water is "typically quite safe to drink as municipal water is chlorinated," Dr. Le adds.
While shower water is relatively clean, there are some spores that can survive the chlorination process or remain on the surface of the shower head and pipes. These spores grow quickly on the surface of warm, nutrient rich material, such as food. "But between the five minutes it takes to peel an orange and to eat it under a shower, there would be little food safety risk," Dr. Le confirms.
Still, some experts believe the trend poses safety concerns, citing the risk of potentially slipping and choking. "As a nutritionist, I would advise against consuming food in the shower," says Hannah Shine, AFA certified personal trainer and health coach at Hourglass Waist. "While it may seem convenient to avoid making a mess, eating in the bathroom can increase the risk of choking and contamination. Instead, it is best to enjoy food in a designated eating area, such as the kitchen or dining room, to maintain proper hygiene and safety while eating."
So while the smell of citrus has been linked to stress relief, you can also just opt for a scented candle or invest in an essential oil diffuser to be on the safe side. Or perhaps the answer is to enjoy your oranges in the bath rather than a shower to cut back on the risk of slipping. One TikTok user even recommends adding rosemary and orange slices to the bath for an "amazing" experience. Either way you peel it, orange you glad you read this article first?