Reduce Your Risk of Food Borne Illnesses
In less than two hours, you’re throwing a dinner party for some of your closest friends and family members. Because you arrived home late from work, you’re trying to accomplish multiple, kitchen tasks at once. If you can relate to this scenario, the last thing on your mind might be food borne illnesses. However, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one out of every six Americans suffers from a food borne sickness each year. To keep you, your friends, and family members safe while dining at your home, you need to follow a few, simple tips.
Poor Shopping Habits
Interestingly, some food borne illnesses result from poor shopping habits. When grocery shopping, you should always:
- Avoid purchasing bulging or dented, canned foods
- Prevent seafood, poultry, and other types of raw meat from touching other foods in your shopping cart
- Shop for frozen items and other perishable foods last
- Inspect fresh eggs before placing them in your shopping basket
Tips for Safe Food Preparation
Upon arriving home from the supermarket, refrigerate or freeze perishable foods promptly. During food preparation, you need to:
- Avoid thawing foods on your kitchen countertops
- Wash your hands thoroughly with warm water and soap before and after touching raw fruits, vegetables, or meats.
- Avoid allowing foods to marinate at room temperature
- Utilize a meat thermometer to ensure your food cooks completely
After enjoying a delicious meal, you should immediately refrigerate any perishable leftovers. Place a descriptive, dated label on your leftovers. This practice will prevent you from consuming older leftovers that may not be safe. Always place cooked foods on the top shelves of your refrigerator while storing raw foods on the bottom shelves of this appliance. By adopting this habit, you’ll prevent potentially harmful juices from raw meats from dripping onto prepared foods. Clean out your refrigerator regularly to prevent cross contamination of foods. By being more mindful of the food shopping, preparation, and storage processes, you’ll decrease your likelihood of succumbing to a food borne illness. And, you’ll keep those you love safe too.
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