Monday, July 10, 2023

Food-borne illness: Causes and symptoms

Foodborne illness occurs when contaminated food or drink is consumed, leading to a range of illnesses caused by disease-causing microbes or pathogens. Unsafe food that contains harmful bacteria, viruses, parasites, or chemical substances can result in more than 200 diseases, spanning from diarrhea to cancers.

The majority of foodborne diseases stem from infections caused by various bacteria, viruses, and parasites. Chemical contamination can lead to acute poisoning or long-term diseases like cancer. These illnesses can have enduring consequences, including disability and death.

The five primary types of foodborne illnesses are Norovirus, Salmonella (non-typhoidal), Clostridium perfringens, Campylobacter, and Staphylococcus aureus. Certain foodborne germs have developed antimicrobial resistance, enabling them to withstand drugs intended to eliminate them. As a result, these germs can persist and proliferate.

Foods associated with foodborne illness encompass raw animal products, fruits and vegetables, raw sprouts, unpasteurized fruit juices or cider, and any food that has come into contact with an individual who is experiencing vomiting or diarrhea.

Typical symptoms of foodborne illness include diarrhea, vomiting, abdominal cramps, nausea, fever, joint/backaches, and fatigue. It's important to note that what some refer to as the "stomach flu" may actually be a foodborne illness caused by a pathogen (such as a virus, bacteria, or parasite) present in contaminated food or drink.

To prevent foodborne illness, the FDA recommends the following practices:
*Minimize cross-contamination.
*Adhere to proper handwashing techniques.
*Maintain a clean kitchen environment.
Food-borne illness: Causes and symptoms

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