Gripped with a slew of bad PR over the past month, the humble handshake is under attack by scientists who, armed with the latest research, claim the germ-spreading maneuver might not be worth the risk.
According to a study in the American Journal of Infection Control, fist bumps and high-fives are healthier alternatives to the handshake because they spread less infectious bacteria. The research also indicates that a wimpy shake is better for you than the firm grip we expect with every outstretched hand.
And over at the Journal of the American Medical Association, the gloves came off with the publication of an article calling for a full handshake ban at health care facilities. The article suggests posting a sign that reads, “Handshake-free zone: to protect your health and the health of those around you, please refrain from shaking hands while on the premises.”
If you do find yourself in a handshake-free zone, or simply want to avoid a germy grip, we have compiled a list of suitable, and healthier, alternatives.
> The fist bump
> The chest bump
> The ‘sup head nod
> The one-finger point
> The wink and gun
> The standard wave