5 Ways to avoid getting sick from the supermarket
Reusable bags are better than plastic, but according to the University of Arizona, 97% of people never clean their bags.
You might think that, because we get the food the goes inside our bodies from the supermarket, it is one of the most sterile places. But supermarkets carry serious pathogens that can cause health issues when we get in contact with them.
Avoid transmitting these dangerous germs and bacteria that you can find in supermarkets by following these steps, as offered by Men’s Health.
1. Double-bag your meat
According to a Tennessee State University study, 50 percent of poultry packages contain bacteria—including diarrhea-causing coliform and E. coli—on the outside. If you carelessly place them on your shopping cart, chances are you will contaminate your other groceries.
What you should do instead is stick your hand in a plastic produce bag, then pick up the meat, and drop it in another empty produce bag. “When you use a bag, the risk of cross-contamination goes down to zero,” says study author Sandria Godwin, Ph.D., R.D., L.D.M.
2. Wipe and wait
Researchers from the University of Arizona found that at least 72% of shopping carts harbor illness-inducing bacteria like E. coli.
To prevent them from contaminating you and your groceries, take an antibacterial wipe at the front of the supermarket wipe it over the cart’s handle. Then wait 20 seconds for it to dry completely.
3. Pick this produce
According to a study by the Journal of Agriculture and Food Chemistry, spinach at the front of the produce display is exposed to more fluorescent light. Spinach that’s exposed to artificial lighting stays fresher longer and produces up to 100 percent higher levels of nutrients including vitamins A, C, E, K, and folate.
4. Clean reusable bags
Reusable bags are better than plastic in that they’re more durable and last longer. But they can also harbor bacteria that can lead to diarrhea and vomiting. The University of Arizona researchers also found that 97 percent of people never clean their bags.
So make sure that before your trip to the supermarket, you clean your bags thoroughly.
5. Skip the cold cuts
According to researchers at Purdue University, 1 in 10 samples taken from deli foods and surfaces contain the bacteria Listeria monocytogenes.
Listeria causes flu-like symptoms such as headache, stiff neck, fever, and meningitis. In pregnant women, listeria infections may lead to miscarriages, stillbirths, and premature births.
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