Did you know that one out of every six Nigerians is expected to become ill from food poisoning this year? Not only does food poisoning send 128,000 people in Nigeria to the hospital each year, but it also has the potential to create long-term health issues. By adhering to these guidelines, you will be able to protect your family from the dangers of food poisoning at home.
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Facts Associated With Food Poisoning
The World Health Organization (WHO) suggests that:
- Every year, more than 1.7 million people die from diarrheal diseases caused by contaminated food and water.
- Gastroenteritis, a disease spread by food, is one of the main reasons why children die around the world.
- About 100,000 children die every year from diarrheal diseases, which affect more than 200 million children.
- More than 200 diseases can be passed on through food.
- Every year, eating contaminated food makes one in ten people sick, and more than 420,000 people die as a result.
- Food that is contaminated can also cause long-term health problems, such as cancer and neurological diseases.
- Food can be poisoned at many different stages, including harvesting, processing, storing, shipping, distributing, and cooking.
10 Ways to Keep Your Food Safe at Home
- Hands should be washed in warm soapy water for at least 20 seconds. It’s important to do this both before and after you touch food.
- Use hot soapy water to clean your cutting boards, plates, forks, spoons, and knives, as well as the surfaces of your countertops. Perform this step after preparing each individual meal item.
- Rinse fruits and vegetables.
- Do not wash any kinds of meat, fish, poultry, or eggs. When water spills from the sink during washing, germs may spread.
- Before opening canned goods, clean the lids.
- Separate raw meat, poultry, fish, and eggs from the other items in your refrigerator. Perform this action in your shopping cart, your bags, and your refrigerator.
- If you want to reuse marinades that have been used on raw foods, you must first bring them to a boil.
- Always chop raw foods on a separate cutting board and serve them on a separate dish.
- Cook to safe temperatures:
- Beef, Pork, Lamb 145 °F
- Fish 145 °F
- Ground Beef, Pork, Lamb 160 °F
- Turkey, Chicken, Duck 165 °F
- To ensure that the meal is cooked to the proper temperature, use a food thermometer. It is not always possible to determine just by looking.
Symptoms of Food Poisoning
Usually, there are four well-known, classic signs:
- diarrhea (loose stools)
- nausea (feeling sick or queasy)
- abdominal pain (stomach cramps)
Who is at Risk of Food Poisoning?
Food that has gone bad can make anyone sick. Food illnesses are more likely to make some people sick than others.
- Pregnant women
- Older Adults
- People with certain health conditions like cancer, HIV/AIDS, diabetes, and kidney disease
For these people, some foods are riskier than others. Talk to your doctor or another health care professional about what foods you can safely eat.
The duty for ensuring that food is safe falls on everyone, including but not limited to governments, industries, producers, restaurant owners, communities, and customers.