Food poisoning is defined as the contamination of food by bacteria, viruses, or other pathogens and their toxic compounds. It is a preventable disease easily rectified by adopting good food handling and hygiene standards. Diarrhea, vomiting, an upset stomach, and nausea are common symptoms of food poisoning.
Food Poisoning Statistics:
Beyond the traditional concept of food safety, dangerous food is defined as unhealthy fats, a high-calorie density, and a high salt content, which contribute to a heightened risk of noncommunicable illness. In addition, street food, widely consumed throughout the country, is frequently infected with pathogenic viruses and bacteria, resulting in various food-borne illnesses.
- Food safety in India is intrinsically linked to the Swachh Bharat Campaign. It also has ties to the government’s ‘Make in India’ drive, which aims to fulfill India’s enormous potential in high-value agricultural exports.
- Every year, contaminated food causes 600 million incidents of food-borne illness and 420 000 deaths all across the globe. Children under the age of five make up 30% of all flood fatalities.
- Food poisoning is the second-most-common infectious disease in India. IDSP (Integrated Disease Surveillance Program) states that food poisoning is widespread in places where food is produced in large amounts, such as Canteens, hostels, and wedding venues.
5 Foods That Cause Food Poisoning
It happens when a person eats/consumes food contaminated with bacteria, viruses, or other pathogens. Certain foods have a higher probability of being contaminated, resulting in a high risk of food poisoning.
|Eggs||Refrigerate eggs and don’t eat them if they’re cracked or broken.|
|Meat||Always keep meat refrigerated and cook it in clean, cleaned utensils.|
|Sprouts||Clean and store them apart from other fruits, meats, and vegetables in the refrigerator.|
|Seafood||When handling fish, wash your hands well, clean it, and refrain from eating raw or undercooked seafood.|
|Dairy products||Before you buy them, make sure they haven’t gone bad and that you keep them refrigerated.|
Some People Are at Higher Risk
Food poisoning may affect anybody, but specific individuals are more prone to become infected since their capacity to resist viruses and illnesses may be compromised.
- Adults above the age of 65
- Children under the age of five
- People with diabetes, liver disease, HIV/AIDS, or cancer
- Pregnant women
Consult a doctor without any further delay, if you are experiencing severe symptoms such as:
- Diarrhea with a fever over 102°F
- Diarrhea for more than three days
- Diarrhea with blood
6 Food Safety Mistakes
Even a small mistake in handling and preparing food can occasionally result in significant sickness. Even a minute percentage of microorganisms, such as Salmonella, in undercooked food is enough to induce food poisoning. Avoid these common food safety blunders to keep your family safe.
Mistake #1: consuming raw milk or eating raw or undercooked animal products or raw sprouts
Mistake #2: Not washing your hands
Mistake #3: Not cleaning fruits and vegetables before peeling them.
Mistake #4: Not thoroughly cooking meat, poultry, turkey, shellfish, or eggs
Mistake #5: Food thawing or marinating on the kitchen counter
Mistake #6: Leaving food out too long before refrigerating it
10 Ways to Prevent Food Poisoning
Here are some recommendations to save you from food poisoning at home.
Before and After Meal Preparation:
#1: Cleanse your hands with soap and water and dry them.
#2: Wash kitchen worktops, knives, and utensils.
#3: Wash dishcloths and hand towels and hang them to dry before reusing them.
During Meal Preparation
#4: Use separate chopping boards for veggies and a separate one for raw meat and fish.
#5: Make sure the food is cooked thoroughly.
#6: Keep raw meat and ready-to-eat meals like salad, fruit, and bread separate.
#7: Keep raw meat on the bottom shelf, away from other foods, so it doesn’t drip on them.
#8: Don’t overfill your refrigerator, and cool leftovers before storing them.
#9: Use leftovers within two days and avoid reheating food more than once.
#10: Strictly follow ‘use-by’ dates and resist eating food that is past its expiration date, even if it seems and smells OK.
Steps to be followed after food poisoning:
Experts advise you to rest your stomach, which entails abstaining from eating and drinking for a few hours.
- To begin with – Keep yourself hydrated.
Drink an adequate amount of fluids to help your body fight off the effects of food poisoning. Dehydration may be caused by vomiting or diarrhea, so munching on ice or drinking little sips of water is a great way to start. Electrolyte-fortified drinks are good, and so are non-caffeinated drinks like Sprite and 7UP, decaffeinated tea, and chicken or vegetable soups.
- Eat easy-to-digest foods
Consume foods that are mild on your stomach and digestive tract. Please keep it simple with low-fat, low-fiber meals. Fat is a nutrient more challenging to digest, especially when your stomach is unsettled. To avoid further aggravating it, avoid heavy meals. Bananas, cereal, egg whites, honey, oatmeal, simple mashed potatoes, and rice are all soothing on the stomach.
If you follow these basic guidelines and act accordingly, you should feel much better in no time. Always remember the four simple steps CLEAN – SEPARATE – COOK – CHILL. Cheers to a Healthy Living!