Food Infection Beware.

Geeta Rao By Geeta Rao, 31st Dec 2014 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL
Posted in Wikinut>Health>General Health>Diseases & Infections

Food infection is something which can be avoided only by maintaining proper standards of hygiene not only in cooking but also maintaining a clean environment.

Prevention Of Food Infection.

Food borne infections are high in third world countries where standards of hygiene are low or not maintained at all. Infections cause digestion and absorption problems which reduces our resistance to illness and at times become fatal and may even result in death. When we complain of indigestion, vomiting, fever and diarrhoea after eating it's an indication that we have eaten infected food. Different types of bacteria breeds on foodstuff which are microbiological in origin. These symptoms develop after 2 to 24 hrs of eating contaminated food. Food infection may manifest itself as food poisoning. Ordinary infections can be treated with anti -diarrhoeal drugs and by avoiding dehydration by intake of fluids in small quantities at regular intervals. Dehydration can cause electrolyte imbalance and may prove fatal. Food can cause infections such as dysentry tuberculosis, jaundice and even worm trouble.
Healthy plants and animals may not be infected but there may be microrganisms on it's surface. This may largely depend on environmental factors like from where the food has been brought, how and by whom it is handled and it's storage. Human waste and sewage are responsible for food and water contamination. Maintainence of hygiene standards have a direct effect on our food and water. Food of human consumption like meat, chicken, eggs, pork, potato, and salad are also consumed by bacteria. In animal products the chances of infection is high compared to others. Salmonella is one such organism which infects chickens, pigs, cattle and eggs. They attack the human gut. Salmonella is found in food that is not refrigerated for long duration or food that is not cooked well or well warmed up before eating. Food should be cooked and thawed well to prevent the growth of salmonella. In case of meat heat penetrates slowly into the large joints during cooking and though periphery of vegetables may be cooked the inside of vegetables may still contain live organisms.
Intestinal parasites stick to the human intestine and absorb all nutrients of the body and the person feels weak. Tapeworm is one such parasite transmitted through food which is not well cooked. Some parasites may not be destroyed even by cooking because they form cyst around themselves and they can resist high temperatures. These cysts may lodge in any part of the body like skin, forming lumps, the eye causing blindness and brain death.
Another parasite named Trichinella spiralis is a parasite transmitted through pork or beef and causes food poisoning. The worms invade the intestinal tract. They first enter the blood, then muscles causing fever, swelling, muscle pain and diarrohoea up to 30 days after eating contaminated food. In India pigs rearing is done unhygenically and they eat even faecal matter so it is unsafe to eat pork products. The other group of bacteria that causes food poisoning is clostridia. It can contaminate meat at slaughter houses. When meat is cooked without adequate spices and left to cool at room temperature for long hours this infection can be caused. Clostridium botulinum is an organism which belongs to the same family which can cause nausea, vomiting, blurred vision, difficulty in swallowing, paralysis and even death. This grows even in improper canned foods, vegetables, fish and meat.
Bacteria can enter from the nose, throat, pimples and finger cuts of those who handle or prepare food. Milk contains bacteria. Tuberculosis can also be transmitted through milk hence, we should drink only boiled milk for it destroys those pathogens. Cold foods can cause amoebic or bacillary dysentry, So when you opt for curd, juices or salads check out the standards of hygiene.
One can catch food infection anywhere at home or even in a restaurant. However, at home infection can be avoided by observing certain precautions like keeping hot foods hot and cold foods cool. When the food is warm chances of infection is less but as it cools down fermentation begins after some hours. Food eaten in chilled form like shakes, and ice-creams should be refrigerated and not kept in room temperature when it's cooling reduces chances of infection is high. Meat should be cooked well and food which is not consumed soon should be cooled and refrigerated. Preserved foods should be heated up to 100 degrees for 15 minutes before consumption. Meat and poultry products should be purchased from clean places. The person who cooks should be free from any stomach infection he or she should not have infectious lesions or cuts on their hands. Washing your hands well before handling food is very vital in infection prevention.
The importance of hygiene should be emphasised and surprise raids conducted by health authorities at restaurants, canning factories, meat shops and the quality should be checked by experts.


Food And Health, Food Preparation, Infection Prevention, Infectious Disease

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author avatar Geeta Rao
I have a passion for writing articles. I mostly write on health and wellness and religion.

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