When bacteria die from boiled water, etc, where do their corpses go??

169 viewsBiologyOther

When bacteria die from boiled water, etc, where do their corpses go??

In: Biology

7 Answers

Anonymous 0 Comments

They remain in the water, just dead, some bacteria might get dissolved but not all will be. Dead bacteria cant harm anyone. However, some bacteria produce toxins that are equally bad as they are and boiling water dosent get rid of toxins, you can make relatively clean water safe by boiling, but you cant exactly just boil sewer water and drink it, thats why filtration + boiling is important.

Anonymous 0 Comments

When we boil water, it gets really hot, right? Well, that heat is like a big, invisible monster that squishes the tiny bacteria, making them disappear. So, their little bodies just break into super tiny pieces that we can’t see, and they float around in the water until they’re gone! It’s like magic, but with heat instead of a wand

Anonymous 0 Comments

They break down and the components dissolve into suspension with the water. Basically, the water is full of bits of organic matter. Even regular unboiled water is full of this stuff. It’s not harmful in such small amounts.

Anonymous 0 Comments

There’s a few things you’re trying to do in relation to bacteria when boiling water.

First, you’re killing live bacteria, because dead bacteria will not be able to reproduce and infect. Their tiny dead bacteria bits might seem gross, but they’re not dangerous – and by the time they’ve boiled for a while, there isn’t going to be much recognizable left, and lots of the chemicals their body was made of will be broken down – water and bits of protein and what not. Usually it doesn’t take long to kill bacteria at high temperature.

Moving on, you have to boil water for a while to kill bacterial spores. Killing the bacteria that create botulism toxin is pretty easy, but killing their spores – which act as little bacteria eggs sort of – can require a long time at high temperature. This is why you have to be very careful when preparing food to last a long time, as spores can become bacteria, and then fill that food up with live bacteria (and potentially their poisonous byproducts).

Finally, you’re trying to destroy certain poisons that the bacteria might have produced. Even dead bacteria can be a threat if those bacteria already made a bunch of poison. Many, but not all, of these poisons can also be de-poisonized by heating them for long enough – for example, the botulism toxin itself can be neutralized if you get food up to around the boiling point for a few minutes.

Anonymous 0 Comments

Bacteria is just a bunch of stuff inside a thing. When you boil water the thing disappears and the stuff floats away from each other. Basically it turns from chemicals arranged in a specific way to chemicals just randomly floating around.

Anonymous 0 Comments

They die and disintegrate, and stay in the water. Presumably you’d then consume them. Once they’re dead they don’t reproduce or make any toxin, they’re dead and they get digested in your stomach just like everything else. However, it is important to note that toxins they have already made could stick around, which is why cooking already-spoiled food doesn’t make it safe.

It’s important to note we consume a lot of bacteria anyway because no surface is ever truly sterile, and our mouths are already filled with them. 99% of them do nothing, and most of them immediately die as soon as they hit stomach acid. Our entire stomach is essentially purpose-built to kill and destroy anything that tries to enter that way, and only very specialized bacteria can survive there. If the stomach acid doesn’t get them, the protein-destroying enzymes will get them, or the lipid-dissolving chemicals, or the army of immune cells that line your intestines, or your own native gut bacteria.

Anonymous 0 Comments

A small addition for interest:

Other commenters are right that the bacteria die and break in to little bits and the little bits are still in the water, they don’t “go” anywhere, they’re just pretty harmless. When the bacteria are alive they multiply and multiply and multiply and can make you sick. When they’re dead and all broken up in to bits they don’t do this. And stuff that goes in to your stomach is broken down and destroyed even more by acid. But the stuff in your stomach isn’t *inside* your body in the same way that your blood and bones and stuff are. The food and stuff is in the “bag” that is your stomach

Even the tiny bits of dead bacteria are dangerous if they get truly *inside* your body. To make something safe to *inject* in to you, boiling won’t even nearly do the trick. Exactly because the “corpses” haven’t gone anywhere after the bacteria are dead. You have to do a *lot* more to destroy the dead bacteria bits *even more*, which uses special technology.

If there aren’t a *lot* of bacteria, boiling can make something safe enough to drink, but it would still be dangerous to get in to your body another way, precisely because the dead bacteria don’t “go” anywhere, like you said. So it’s a good question. The bacteria “corpses” are a real problem in some instances, like making injections.