When summer arrives, it is usual for many people to enjoy those long-awaited holidays, usually outside their homes (in apartments, hotels or rural houses), but it is also common for them to spend the whole day on the beach or in the pool. Eat what you have prepared at home, or do it in restaurants, bars or bars.
Precisely with the arrival of heat it is quite usual that, at this time, the cases of stomach flu , a digestive disorder more common than you think.
This is due to high temperatures favor the proliferation of bacteria in many foods , which in turn cause dangerous and annoying food poisoning .
Hence take certain precautions be something simply fundamental, not only outside the home, but also within it.
What is a food poisoning? Why do cases increase in summer?
A food poisoning is an infection that occurs when a food or drink is ingested that contains parasites, viruses, bacteria or toxins produced by these same microorganisms. In most cases this type of poisoning occurs from common bacteria, such as Escherichia coli or staphylococcus.
But they are not the only microorganisms or toxins that can cause food poisoning. We must also name poisonings by salmonella, cholera, enteritis Campylobacter or toxins that are found mostly in fish or shellfish in poor condition or damaged.
Your symptoms appear between 2 to 8 hours after you have eaten the food or drink the contaminated drink. And, among the symptoms that most commonly appear, include diarrhea, nausea and vomiting, abdominal cramps and belly pain, chills and fever, weakness and headache.
During the summer months dangerously increase the cases of food poisoning, mainly due to heat and high temperatures, causing in most cases an inadequate conservation maintenance. This is combined with insufficient cooking of the food, or maintaining an incorrect and inadequate hygiene.
Therefore, most cases occur in the summer, when it is more common to eat in outdoor restaurants and beach bars on the beach.
Useful tips to avoid food poisoning in summer
Advice at home to prevent food poisoning
- Wash your hands thoroughly before putting on cooking. Do the same with the kitchen utensils that you are going to use.
- All perishable foods should be stored in the refrigerator or freezer, as long as they are not going to be consumed at the moment.
- Cover all food with transparent film or albal paper.
- Make sure the food is well cooked.
- Eggs : it is best to buy those that indicate a date of both expiration and packaging, never wash them with peel and always keep them in the fridge.
- Fish : buy them always very fresh, freezing them immediately if you are not going to consume them at the moment. In the fridge, do not forget that the fish do not last beyond two or three days.
- meats : when shopping, make sure it is fresh (do not forget that fresh meat is red and its fat is white, avoid brown meats with yellow fat, as they are not fresh). Consume it in at least 36 hours once it has been bought, always keeping it in the fridge.
- Fruits and vegetables : Wash them well before consuming them. If you are not going to eat them at the moment, it should take a maximum of one week from the moment of purchase and consumption. Always peel the fruit.
- Dairy products : Always keep them in the refrigerator once they have been opened.
Advice in the restaurant, bar or snack bar
- Beware of prepared dishes : avoid dishes with eggs and mayonnaise if you are not sure that they have been well prepared. Avoid asking for a Russian salad, especially at beach bars and beach bars.
- Seafood and fish : always make sure they are fresh and well cooked.
- Vegetable sandwiches and sandwiches : avoid those sandwiches or sandwiches with sauces or seafood.
- Salads : dress them yourself It is better that they do not have sauces, eggs, fish or seafood.
- Water : it is better that it is bottled water, and that you are the one who opens it (it is advisable to avoid that they bring it to you already open).
Tips when you eat at the beach or pool
- Do not bring food that can easily spoil : as dishes with egg, fish or Russian salad.
- Keep food cold during the time you are away from home : use a portable cooler with ice packs or pre-frozen beakers.
Be especially careful with these foods: the main culprits of poisoning in summer
Although food poisoning can be practically given by having eaten any food in poor condition, it is true that especially in summer, there are a number of foods that become the main "culprits". They are the following:
- Egg: It is one of the most common, either in tortillas, cooked or fried and in egg-based sauces. It is advised to handle it with extreme care, avoiding that the interior (the white and yolk) become contaminated with the skin, which can be dirty with the feces of the hen (in fact, salmonellosis is a bacterium that we find so much in the feces as in the intestines of many animals). Therefore it is not advisable to wash the egg. In addition, it is advisable to always keep the egg-based sauces in the fridge, and consume them in the first 24 hours.
- Chicken: Because of its abundance in water and its own chemical composition, chicken meat is another of the foods that most easily tends to be contaminated. It is very important to cook it well, totally and at high temperatures, and avoid it if it is raw or semicruda.
- Vegetables, vegetables: Since they are in contact with the earth, this can also be in contact with contaminated manure. Therefore, it is advisable to wash them well before handling them in the kitchen.
- Fish and seafood: It is advisable to handle it with great care, washing it well and reserving it in the fridge until the time of cooking. Then, you must cook well. In addition, you should avoid eating it raw or semi-cooked if you are not sure that it has been well frozen previously (fundamental measure to avoid anisakis ).
If all the advice indicated throughout this note is followed, we can enjoy a safe, calm and healthy summer, avoiding the majority of common food poisonings.