live with physical challenges.
I am NOT a DOCTOR!!! I don't even play one on TV!!! It is my goal to live a more healthy lifestyle. Living well and being happy is what this blog is all about.

"Nothing,' wrote Tolstoy, 'can make our life, or the lives of other people, more
beautiful than perpetual kindness."

- Gretchen Rubin

I write about my own experiences and what works (or does not) for me. Nothing I write is to be taken as medical advice.

Only your health care provider, personal physician,Disclaimer:
I am not a doctor - I don't even play one on TV! This
or pharmacist can provide you with advice on what is safe and effective for your unique needs.

Monday, February 18, 2013

An Ounce of Prevention is Worth a Pound of Cure

Do you wash your raw fruits and vegetables quite well before eating them?  Obviously, you need to also wash your hands frequently, especially before you begin handling food.  Bacteria like E. Coli can be on those raw foods and spread to your intestines if the food is not washed very thoroughly.  We have just recently had yet another recall on packaged spinach here in the U.S.  You can never be too careful with raw foods. 
According to the FDA, the following steps should be taken when handling raw food:
  1. Wash your hands with hot soapy water before and after preparing food.
  2. Wash kitchen surfaces and utensils with hot, soapy water after preparing each food item. 
  3. Clean the cutting board after peeling produce and before cutting and chopping.  Bacteria from the outside of raw produce can be transferred to the inside when it is cut or peeled.
  4. Do not wash produce with soaps or detergents.  There are commercial washes available, but we advise consumers to wash fresh fruits and vegetables with distilled water.  Soak all produce for two minutes to reduce the risk of food-borne illness.  Use a vegetable brush on food with thick skin in order to wash away hard-to-remove microbes.
  5. Produce with a lot of nooks and crannies such as broccoli or cauliflower should be soaked for a couple of minutes in cold clean water.
  6. Some produce such as raspberries should not be soaked in water.  Put fragile produce in a colander and spray it with distilled water.
  7. After washing produce, dry with a clean paper towel.  This can remove more bacteria.
  8. Don't assume that because you purchase produce from a homegrown farmers market rather than your local market, it does not need to be well washed.  Better to be safe than sorry!
  9. If you buy a packaged product that is labeled "ready-to-eat", "washed" or "triple-washed" then you do not have to rewash it.
  10. Once you cut or peel produce, refrigerate it as soon as possible at 40 degrees F. or below.
  11. Do not purchase cut produce that is not refrigerated.

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.  - Benjamin Franklin

Also, if you still eat beef, make sure the meat is cooked all the way through with no pink in the center.  I know that's difficult for those of you who do not like your hamburgers well done, but believe me it's better than getting an infection caused by E. Coli. 

If you notice any of the following symptoms, get to your doctor's office immediately:

Flu-like symptoms, chills, low-grade fever, a general feeling of unwellness
Stomach cramps, bloating and/or tenderness
Nausea and vomiting
Diarrhea, watery at first but then becoming bloody

The key is to kick it as soon as you notice the first symptoms and get to the doctor and get started on antibiotics quickly.

Here's a cute little song called "Fruits and Vegetables" - enjoy! 


And who doesn't like Veggie Tales?

I want to mention that today is NATIONAL BATTERY DAY!!!!!!!!  Celebrate by honoring the birth of the electric battery's inventor, Count Alessandro Volta, an Italian physicist who was born on this day in 1745. Get charged up about vegetables in your diet! I know... groan!!!



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