Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Learn To Identify Major Sources Of Food Poisoning

Happy December!  It's Wednesday, which means a health post....

There have been some frightening incidents of E.coli bacteria turning up in mass-marketed foods in the past couple of years. However, many things that you normally wouldn't suspect are major carriers of food poisoning.

The following are some common ways that you can get various types of food poisoning….

Beans. Specifically, kidney beans. There is actually an illness called Red Kidney Bean Poisoning – it is caused by a protein that is present in large quantities in kidney beans. If you consume kidney beans that are not properly cooked, you could experience the symptoms within a couple of hours. The symptoms include diarrhea and vomiting.

To minimize the bad protein in kidney beans, soak the dry beans in water for at least 5 hours, then cook according to your recipe.

Potatoes. If your potatoes are greenish or rotting, they could contain too much of a natural substance that protects them from pests and fungus. Too much of this could make you very ill. Usually this substance stays in the stems, leaves and roots, but sometimes it makes its way to the edible part of the potato. If you have red potatoes it will be difficult to see the greenish tint, so be careful and only use fresh potatoes.

Restaurant Salad Bars. 35% of all food poisoning comes from these bacterial breeding grounds. There isn’t much you can do to keep yourself safe except to avoid these altogether.

Acrylic Nails. Studies have shown that people with acrylic nails carry more bacteria on their nails than those with natural nails. For some reason, it is very difficult to clean bacteria from acrylic nails. If you have acrylic nails you should ask if they are really worth the risk.

Tuna Burgers. Histamine poisoning is a type of food poisoning that is fairly common to tuna and other fish. Restaurant tuna burgers have been found to harbor more histamine, which has no smell or taste.

Proper refrigeration would solve this problem, since the bacteria that produces the histamine cannot live in cold temperatures, but the bacteria multiple like crazy when the fish is left at room temperature for awhile. Once the fish is contaminated, nothing can remove the poison.

Petting Zoos. You can pick up E.coli at petting zoos and fairs. After touching the animals, wash your hands well or use an anti-bacterial product on your hands. Don’t touch your face, eat, drink or smoke until your hands are clean.

Raw Clams and Oysters. Seafood accounts for over 4% of food poisoning in the United States, and raw shellfish can harbor numerous problems, including hepatitis and bacteria. Raw shellfish is a food that you should consider eliminating totally from your diet.

Staying alert and being informed is your best defense against deadly food-borne viruses and bacteria. Eliminating dangerous food from your diet isn’t that difficult and can actually save your life.

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