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Food Poisoning

The chances of getting food poisoning during the November and December holiday season is rather good. The most common source for food-borne illnesses is beef and poultry. Does your holiday season include the Thanksgiving turkey or the Christmas turkey? My family holiday feast certainly does!

Newspaper headlines about food poisoning
© Bobbie Jean Peachey
Terms

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that over 70 million people get sick each year from food-borne illnesses and that between 3,000 to 5,000 people die each year from eating contaminated food. We need to be aware of what food poisoning is, how we get it, and how to prevent it. We need to know the symptoms of food poisoning, and when to call the doctor.

Food Poisoning
Food poisoning is an illness caused by eating food contaminated with bacteria, parasites, or viruses, such as beef poultry or poisonous foods, such as mushrooms and certain types of seafood. There are other foods that you may not realize could be toxic and poisonous to humans.

Ten Poisonous Foods We Eat
This list includes tomatoes and potatoes.
10 Deadly Foods We Eat
This list contains nutmeg, chocolate, tapioca, and peanuts.
8 Common Poisonous Foods
Lima beans and kidney beans are on this list.
Worlds Most Dangerous Foods
Elderberries, fugu, blood clams, hakarl, and ackee.

Causes of Food Poisoning
Mayo Clinic
A list of certain bacteria, viruses, parasites, or toxins that causes food poisoning.
MedlinePlus
Food poisoning occurs when you swallow food or water that contains bacteria, parasites, viruses, or the toxins made by these germs.

Prevent Food Poisoning
10 Ways to prevent food poisoning.

Symptoms of Food Poisoning
Most cases of food poisoning are over within 34 to 48 hours and are not serious nor life threatening.
• nausea
• abdominal cramping
• vomiting
• diarrhea
• fever

How to Treat Food Poisoning
• No solid foods until vomiting ends
• No dairy foods until vomiting and diarrhea are gone
• Afterwards light bland foods, saltine crackers, bread
• Drink lots of clear fluids. Start slow and gradually increase the fluids.

When to Get Medical Treatment for Food Poisoning
• Call 911 if food poisoning symptoms occur after eating mushrooms or seafood
• Call 911 if a person becomes severely dehydrated
• Call your doctor if diarrhea, vomiting, nausea lasts more than 3 days
• Call your doctor if the vomiting is too severe to keep liquids down
• Call your doctor if a child under three has food poisoning symptoms
• Call the doctor if a pregnant person has food poisoning symptoms

When to Go to the Nearest Hospital Emergency Facility
• If the person collapses, passes out, has blurred vision
• Abdominal pain or symptoms and a fever higher than 101 F
• Sharp abdominal pain or cramping that lasts longer than 10 - 15 minutes
• Bloody bowel movements or vomiting blood
• The abdomen or stomach swells
• The skin and/or eyes turn yellow
• At any time you consider the situation to worsen or become an emergency

Food Poisoning Resources:
Food Safety
eMedicineHealth
Foodborne Illness

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