6 Common Causes Of Food Contamination
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Food contamination has become extremely common these days. Food can become easily poisoned with different types of parasites, bacteria, and toxins. The contamination of food can lead to foodborne illness. Stomach ache, vomiting, diarrhoea, and nausea are some of the most common symptoms of foodborne illness. 

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It is extremely important to watch out for the quality of food that one is consuming to avoid any serious health problems for children, old people and pregnant women. It is even more important as even the slightest of issues related to food contamination can become huge and may lead to the development of chronic conditions. Certain types of food are always more likely to get contaminated as compared to others. Here are the top seven reasons why food gets contaminated.

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* Salmonella

Salmonella is one of the most common bacteria that leads to multiple food infections. This bacteria is found in the intestines of a lot of mammals, reptiles and birds. Upon the consumption of poultry and dairy-related foods such as eggs, milk, dairy products, and meat, this bacteria may spread across human beings and cause severe health-related problems. Initially, a person experiences symptoms like fever, cramps and diarrhoea. Upon being infected by the bacteria, it takes at least 4 to 7 days to recover. However, somebody who has a weak immune system may take an even longer time to recover and might even have to get hospitalised.

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* Intestinal Viruses

Intestinal viruses have been a major reason behind the outbreak of a lot of food poisoning-related issues in the past. People affected by this virus go through a series of vomiting and diarrhoea. In some cases, it may also result in nausea and jaundice. As per the Cleveland Clinic, intestinal viruses can cause digestive infections and , and also gastrointestinal problems. One of the most common ways of being affected by these viruses is by eating shellfish. It is not life-threatening but can disrupt the flow of life.

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* Listeria

Listeria outbreaks are quite common in the United States of America. Most of these are related to the consumption of cheese and milk products that have not been pasteurised properly. Listeria infection can lead to fever and diarrhoea. This can be life-threatening for an unborn baby if a pregnant mother consumes unpasteurised cheese or milk.  This is why it is critical to be thoughtful while consuming dairy products. One must always check the source of production and should only go for organic sources of dairy products.

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* Parasites

The contamination of food because of being affected by parasites is also pretty common. Bacteria and viruses are not the only reasons behind food contamination. There are different types of parasites, such as toxoplasma gondii, giardia lamblia and many other varieties of tapeworms and roundworms that may infect food. The infection caused by these parasites might be so serious that it can even lead to death. Most of the time, people are not able to detect the cause behind food infection in the case of parasites for the longest time. The most serious implication of parasite infection in food is the accumulation of various parasites in the intestine.

* Not Covering Food Properly

Storage and proper covering of food are extremely important to make it safe for consumption for a longer interval of time. Most of the time, people end up storing their food in the wrong way, which leads to severe contamination of the food. There is a proper method of storing food at both room temperature and in the refrigerator. While storing food in the refrigerator, one must always use airtight containers that help keep the moisture away. If one has to store food at room temperature, they must always use containers that cover the food from all sides to prevent exposure to food from any kind of harmful bacteria or substances that are present in the air. Food is extremely vulnerable to being affected by harmful bacteria and viruses present in the environment, and it should be stored effectively.

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* Moulds

Other than bacteria, viruses and parasites, the development of moulds in food is another serious problem that people encounter. These moulds can make the food toxic and unsafe for consumption. Before eating anything that has been stored in the refrigerator or pantry, one must first carefully assess it from the outside. The presence of any pachiness or discolouration means that the food has gone bad, and it must not be consumed at any cost. Moulds might appear on perishable food items faster than the ones that have a longer shelf life.