A new stomach bug is spreading across the U.S., having already infected almost 300 people, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which suspects the stomach bug is caused by a contaminated food or drink.
So far, the stomach bug—identified as a cyclospora infection—has infected people in Iowa, Nebraska, Texas, Wisconsin, Georgia, Connecticut, and New Jersey, with over 10 people requiring hospitalization.
This type of infection is often linked to contaminated fresh produce, but the CDC has yet to pinpoint the source for the infection, or even if all the cases across these states are related.
If you’re suffering from this infection, you’ll present the following symptoms:
- Watery diarrhea
- Weight loss
- Stomach cramps
- Other flu-like symptoms
This stomach bug is just one of many different types of viruses that you can develop if you eat contaminated food or produce, and illustrates the importance of handling your produce carefully. In fact, 48 million Americans suffer from foodborne illnesses every year, and all those illnesses could be prevented if people took more care with the way they handle their food. Here are a few tips to help you avoid the dangers of foodborne illnesses:
- Always wash your fruits and vegetables thoroughly
- Wash your hands after preparing raw food
- Don’t cross-contaminate raw products with prepared foods (keep in mind you should use different knives and cutting boards when preparing raw chicken and then cooking vegetables, for example)
- Cook your food to safe internal temperature
- Refrigerate food quickly
For more life-saving tips, click here for the symptoms and dangers of foodborne illnesses, and how you can avoid them.
Source(s) for Today’s Article:
Rettner, R., “Cyclosporiasis, intestinal illness sickens more than 200 in 4 states,” Huffington Post web site, July 22, 2013; http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/07/22/cyclosporiasis-outbreak-intestinal-illness-200-_n_3636154.html, last accessed July 25, 2013.
“Stomach bug stumps CDC as infection spreads to more than 275 people in several states,” Huffington Post web site, July 24, 2013; http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/07/24/stomach-bug_n_3646831.html?ncid=edlinkusaolp00000003, last accessed July 25, 2013.
Tobianah, V., “Why you need to wash your vegetables,” Foods4BetterHealth web site, May 27, 2013; http://www.foods4betterhealth.com/why-you-need-to-wash-your-vegetables-1882, last accessed July 25, 2013. ly 17, 2013.