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Saturday, May 25, 2013

Safe Summer Food Tips

Everyone looks forwards to summer, a time to relax, vacation and plan backyard barbecues and picnics. As you plan your summer activities, be sure to include a few food safety tips that will help keep everyone healthy and happy.

Tip #1 - take special care with food at picnics. Foods containing milk, cheese, meat or other dairy products, like mayonnaise in cole slaw and potato salad, can quickly go bad in the hot summer temperatures and cause sickness. These foods should not be left out for more than one hour. Keep them refrigerated.

Tip #2 - be careful when handling meat. This is an area where many people can get food poisoning. Meat prepared by someone with dirty hands, or meat that is not properly cooked, can easily cause food poisoning.

Tip #3 - wash raw fruits and vegetables carefully, even if they are organic or purchased from a farm market.

Tip #4 - be careful about drinking water in outdoor picnic shelters or other facilities where the quality of the water is unknown. It is best to bring your own drinking water to avoid bacterial contamination from water that has not been treated.

Tip #5 - be especially careful about alcohol use. Use moderation in drinking and never ever drink and drive, or let a friend drink and drive. Serving alcoholic beverages at summer parties is common but brings with it a serious responsibility for yourself and your guests.

During summer, millions of people will be having their own backyard parties and attending get-togethers at the homes of others. Recognize the signs of food poisoning. If you or anyone at a party begins to have the following symptoms within 2-6 hours after eating, they should be taken to the doctor of emergency room immediately as they may have food poisoning.

•Abdominal cramps
•Diarrhea (may be bloody)
•Fever and chills
•Nausea and vomiting
•Weakness (may be serious)
DISCLAIMER: The content or opinions expressed on this web site are not to be interpreted as medical advice. Please consult with your doctor or medical practictioner before utilizing any suggestions on this web site.