Health News

Can’t Stomach Food Poisoning?

With BBQ’s, picnics and outdoor festivals ramping up this season it’s important to remember some food hygiene basics before enjoying your next avo toast.

stomach pain

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 48 million people get sick from food poisoning each year, with 128,000 of them having to be hospitalized. Obviously this leaves a lot to say about hygiene and food prepping conditions.

Food poisoning occurs specifically when a certain kind of bacteria, or the toxins it produces, finds its way into food being consumed by a person. There are multiple ways in which food poisoning can occur and become contaminated enough to cause food poisoning.

A Rare Appearance: Undercooked meat is the ultimate food poisoning culprit. Even when craving a slightly rare steak, you run the risk of toxic and terrible food poisoning. Food should be cooked over 160°F to kill-off disease-spreading bacteria.

Fruit of Labor: Unwashed fruit & veggies can harbor some lingering germs. Before creating your go-to fruit salad, make sure you rinse produce before cutting them. Even for items with rinds such as melons.

An Egg-cellent Point: Mayonnaise and other egg-based products should be refrigerated until they are ready to be eaten. Once served, they shouldn’t be left out for more than two hours at a time.

Keep it Hygienic: Before attempting to prepare any meal, it’s important to properly wash your hands and clean food prep surfaces as well as utensils.

All in all, medical journals record over 200 diseases, which can occur as a result of food poisoning. There are a few indicators that suggest you may be experiencing a bout of food poisoning:

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Stomach pain or cramps
  • Nausea
  • Fever

The effects can vary from person to person, but those with compromised immune systems including, pregnant women, older adults, children and those with chronic conditions, should take extra precaution when eating out. If experiencing symptoms, don’t immediately blame your most recent meal. Some viruses can take anywhere between a few hours to eight days to make an appearance.

Trying a new themed restaurant? Go with your gut feeling if something doesn’t look right.