Poultry and meat
Raw poultry and meat may contain harmful bacteria, including salmonella, listeria, campylobacteria, and E. coli. Thorough cooking kills these pathogens. Be careful not to cross-contaminate other items in the fridge, sink, or on the countertop.
Lettuce and other leafy greens are super healthy but also susceptible to contamination through improper processing or handling. Most of the bacteria are in the outer leaves, discard and rinse the rest a few times. Bagged salad should also be washed.
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Eggs can be contaminated with salmonella. Store in the fridge and cook thoroughly before eating. Avoid raw or runny eggs.
Raw tuna that is not properly refrigerated can cause poisoning from a substance that develops in decaying flesh called scrombotoxin. Symptoms include: headache, cramps, nausea, and loss of vision. Cooking does not destroy the contaminant.
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Raw oysters may be infected with norovirus, which causes gastroenteritis, or vibrio, a dangerous bacterium related to cholera.
Food poisoning linked to this popular vegetable is often caused by dishes like potato salad that are improperly refrigerated. Potatoes can also be contaminated during agricultural processing. Scrub well and cook thoroughly.
Outbreaks of food poisoning can occur when pasteurised milk is cross-contaminated with under- or unpasteurised milk. Soft ice cream machines that aren't regularly cleaned may also harbour bacteria.
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Cheese can become contaminated during processing, but the greatest danger comes from eating cheese made from unpasteurised milk. Raw cheese may carry listeria, a pathogen that is particularly dangerous for pregnant women.
Salmonella can live in the raw fruit, but multiply when tomatoes are cut and left in a warm environment. Store items like fresh salsa in the fridge.
The warm, moist conditions that are ideal for growing beansprouts are also great for cultivating bacteria. It’s recommended that children, the elderly, and anyone with a compromised immune system avoid consuming raw beansprouts.
BerriesMost cases of illnesses associated with berries occur from fruit that is contaminated by sick farm workers or exposed to dirty water. Rinse berries thoroughly and find trusted local source for in season fruit.