The festive season is about celebrating with friends, family. work colleagues and clients . This often involves eating out at restaurants.
Choose restaurants that are clean and that are willing to prepare your food as you order it cooked. Avoid buffets and salad bars where food sits out for a long time and comes in contact with many people. Food can become contaminated when someone with a virus, often a norovirus, or another “bug” handles it.
Food-poisoning bacteria can grow and multiply on some types of food more easily than others. When eating out, pay special attention to how these high-risk foods are prepared, cooked, stored and served. This high-risk foods include:
- raw and cooked meat, including poultry such as chicken and turkey, and foods containing these, such as casseroles, curries and lasagne
- dairy products, such as custard and dairy-based desserts like custard tarts and cheesecake
- eggs and egg products, such as mousse
- small goods such as hams and salamis
- seafood, such as seafood salad, patties, fish balls, stews containing seafood and fish stock
- cooked rice and pasta
- prepared salads like coleslaws, pasta salads and rice salads
- prepared fruit salads
- ready-to-eat foods, including sandwiches, rolls, and pizzas that contain any of the food above.
If you really must take a “doggie bag” of leftover food home refrigerate immediately. It can be exposed to a number of hazards including:
- high-risk food left in the temperature danger zone (between 5 °C and 60 °C) can have increased levels of food-poisoning bacteria
- incorrect handling by the consumer can contaminate the food with food-poisoning bacteria
- not being reheated adequately.
For more information check out Food Better Health Channel.
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