What you need to know about E. coli

People are obsessed with food and hygiene especially given the number of cases related to food poisoning. I know that I am, so I always try to eat only clean fruits and vegetables, wash my hands before each meal, and drink bottled water.

Since most of us like eating out, I’ve thought I share with you some interesting stuff about E.coli such as what causes this infection, its symptoms, and ways to cure the disease.

You’ve probably weren’t aware of, but people and animal normally have some of this bacteria located in their intestines. There are ways for E.coli to enter your body and one of them is related to improper food handling.

No matter where the food is prepared, may it be at home, in a fast food place or in a restaurant, if you handle it without washing your hands completely you risk spreading the bacteria. Moreover, using utensils, cutting boards, or serving the food in dishes that haven’t been washed are responsible for cross-contamination.

If you leave the food on the table, especially cooked foods, and you consume them without been stored in the fridge, you are prone to getting the disease. The whole point is to eat fresh food that has been washed, cooked at higher temperatures, and stored in a cool and dry place. If you stick to this principles, E.coli won’t get near you.

 

Apart from this, during the slaughtering process, meat can get infected with this bacteria straight from the animal’s intestines. This is why always make sure to wash the meat and cook it at a higher level of temperature that kills any bacteria whatsoever.

Another possible source of infection is the contaminated water or even water located in swimming pools. Since E.coli can be easily spread from person to person if they don’t wash their hands. Therefore, places such as schools and nursing homes are ideal for spreading this bacteria.

Among the symptoms caused by this intestinal infection, I have to mention abdominal cramping, severe diarrhea, gases, vomiting, fatigue, and fever. These usually last around 5 to 10 days and debut around 1 to 10 days after being exposed to E.coli.

 

In some situations, according to the severity of the case, there might be signs of blood in the urine, a pale skin, bruises, and major dehydration.

Not all people get the same reaction when their body starts to fight this infection. Some risk factors that can worsen the situation are age, a weakened immune system, type of foods, and the low level of stomach acids.

If you start noticing any of these symptoms, you must seek a doctor because there are ways to treat the E. coli infection. Besides drinking plenty of water, you must rest and eat only foods recommended by a medical specialist. You shouldn’t get antidiarrheal medication unless your doctor recommends to.

 

 

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