The beach has all sorts of ways to punish you for daring to relax and enjoy life. The sun can burn you and give you cancer, while the water can drown and poison you. Then there’s the sand, which can contain pathogens that make you feel like a Patriots fan the day after yet another crushing Super Bowl humiliation at the hands of the Giants.
According to a study led by the Environmental Protection Agency, the L.A. Times reports, the sand poses more of a risk than the water or sun. Researchers interviewed those who had spent time at beaches in Rhode Island and Alabama and concluded that those who dug in the sand were more likely to have suffered symptoms such as nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. Those who buried themselves in the sand faced the greatest risk.
Definitely keep the study results in mind the next time you’ve just dug up a sand castle and start craving a snack. An EPA rep says the news isn’t a reason not to enjoy the beach. But you should wash up before you eat and after you leave the area.