Don't Let a Foodborne Illness Ruin Your Day


Man Fighting Abrupt Onset of Nausea

Most of the time, foodborne illnesses only last maybe a few hours or a day. However, you can never be too safe. After all, about 128,000 hospitalizations and 3,000 deaths occur in the United States every year. Be careful when preparing, cooking, and storing food.

When preparing your meals, you are advised to wash your hands frequently. Likewise, you will want to wash all vegetables and fruits. When defrosting meat that you later want to cook, you must either leave it in the refrigerator or set it in cold water. The other thawing option would be to defrost it in the microwave according to the meat weight and appliance operating instructions.

You also are advised to cut and prepare chicken hamburger and other animal-based food on a well-sanitized surface and keep raw meat away from other food. In addition, it is recommended that you not handle vegetables on the same cutting board surface as meat.

Caution also is needed when cooking raw beef, fish, poultry and other animal products. When you eat meat that is pink in the middle, you always put yourself at a higher risk of food poisoning. Therefore, it is also highly recommended that you cook your food until it is well done. If you want to make sure your food is safe, you can use a meat thermometer. It should be cooked to at least 180 degrees. Egg yolks should be cooked until they are firm.

When refrigerating food, it should be stored at a temperature of approximately 40 degrees or cooler. If freezing your leftovers, it should be stored at 0 degrees or colder. It also is important place food in your refrigerator or freezer as soon as possible after you are done eating it.

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