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Food Preparation Safety for Vegetable Dishes

Incorporating vegetables into your diet provides health benefits, especially when you select and prepare them in a safe manner. It is extremely important to add vegetables in your diet because it provides you with nutrients that help you avoid heart disease, stroke, and cancer. To some, eating vegetables help them lose weight.

However, some raw vegetables may have dangerous microorganisms. If food safety procedures are not followed, it can cause food poisoning or worse, viral infections.

Buy fresh and washed vegetables

Contaminated food produce causes foodborne diseases to 50 percent of the citizens in the United States alone. Keep it safe by buying only fresh vegetables that are washed. These are usually salads and cooked vegetables. Fresh, but unwashed vegetables, including lettuce and salads are the usual suspects for foodborne diseases.

Consume cooked vegetables

Vegetables are versatile and can be eaten either raw or cooked. Raw vegetables can be coupled with dips or made into salads while vegetables can be cooked with basically any method. However, as I mentioned earlier consuming raw vegetables may expose you to contamination. Cooking may be a necessary part for safety purposes.

Observe proper storage of vegetables

Vegetables that are grown in either soil or water are exposed to bacteria. While risks may be low, proper steps should still be taken to avoid consuming huge amounts of bacteria that are in the vegetables.

When storing vegetables, make sure they are separated from other raw food and away from frozen meat where juices may drip. Although vegetables do not necessarily have to be stored in refrigerators, cold temperature can help preserve their nutritional value.

Wash vegetables before eating

While washing vegetables cannot guarantee protection against pesticide residues, it helps washing off soil that may have been exposed to bacteria. Washing your raw food before eating is generally good practice to help prevent consuming bacteria-covered produce.

Clean any tool used for preparing vegetables

Your chopping board and knives have to be thoroughly washed before you use them to prepare your vegetables, as they can be a source of bacteria. Even the sponge that you use for washing it should be thoroughly cleaned.

Decontaminating your sponge is especially important because it can potentially be the grossest thing you have in the kitchen. To clean it, put your sponge inside the microwave and set it at 165 degrees. Any microorganism would die at that temperature and your newly cleaned sponge can now wash your ceramic cookware and other kitchen tools.

Cook sprouts thoroughly

Sprouts thrive in an environment that is ideal for germs to multiply so you can only imagine how contaminated they are. With that being said, make sure you cook your sprouts as thoroughly as possible. This way you avoid risking yourself to various illnesses.

Some people are more prone to catching these diseases when eating sprouts due to a weakened immune system. These include pregnant women, children, and the elderlies. If you are any of the above, make sure you do not eat raw and half-cooked sprouts.

Refrigerate cut up, peeled, and cooked vegetables

You do not always get to finish your vegetables whether they are raw or cooked. For those that you have already cut up, peeled, or even cooked, you have to refrigerate them as soon as possible or at most within two hours. Remember to put them in a clean container and store it properly, as mentioned earlier.

Also, since about half of U.S. citizens suffer from foodborne illnesses regularly. The chances are high that you can be one of them, if you are not extra careful about buying, storing, and cooking your vegetables. While you have another 50 percent chance of avoiding it, you might as well be safe than sorry.

Sarah is the author of Simmer and Zest. She loves to cook and she’s not about to let anyone eat anything that does not taste good or is bad for the body.

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I bought milk and groceries from there 3/9/23 and it's out of date n I've been throwing up n crapping all day n night and feeling terrible I hadn't looked at the date till after we ate cereal and got sick. So I checked the date on milk n it's out of date. | Symptoms: Nausea, Diarrhea, Vomiting See Less

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Carl Wilhelm Clasen GmbH is recalling Alesto Roasted Pistachios due to a too-high content of ochratoxin A. These products were sold by Lidl stores in Belgium.

The recalled products are:
- "Pistazienkerne gerostet" (Roasted pistachios), 70gr, Use-by dates and sales periods:
25/03/2023: from 5/07/2022 to 10/11/2022 inclusive... See More
12/08/2023 and 15/10/2023: from 20/12/2022 to 24/02/2023 inclusive
28/10/2023 : from 13/02/2023 to 01/03/2023 included
- "Pistazienkerne gerostet & gesalzen" (Roasted and salted pistachios)70gr, Use-by dates and sales periods:
23/03/2023: from 5/07/2022 to 10/11/2022 inclusive
09/09/2023 and 16/10/2023: from 20/12/2022 to 24/02/2023 inclusive

Lidl Belgium urges its customers not to consume these products and to return them to the point of sale where they were purchased. You will be reimbursed even without presenting the receipt.

In case you experience harm from these products, it is important to report it. It can help to detect & resolve issues and prevent others from being harmed, and it enables better surveillance. If symptoms persist, seek medical care.

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My child experienced stomach distress after eating Lucky Charms cereal in 2022. We discontinued eating the product until the issues could be resolved by the manufacturer. She has not eaten the product until today (3/29/2023) and it appears the product issues have not been resolved as our... See More daughter experienced severe stomach cramping and pain within hours after eating Lucky Charms cereal again. | Symptoms: Nausea, Cramps, Stomach Pain See Less

I ate a bowl of Honey Nut Cheerios with lactose free milk about an hour before bed on march 6, 2023 and woke up around 3:00 AM with extremely painful stomach cramps and diarrhea that has persisted throughout the day today (3/7/23) | Symptoms: Diarrhea, Cramps See Less

You call this a short story?
Reply 4 days ago
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Trader Joe's is recalling Trader Joe’s Organic Tropical Fruit Blend because the supplier informed them that the product may have the potential to be contaminated with Hepatitis A. The product was sold in Trader Joe's stores. No illnesses have been reported to date, and all potentially affected... See More product has been removed from sale and destroyed.

The recalled product is:
- Trader Joe’s Organic Tropical Fruit Blend, SKU# 51191, BEST BY dates of 04/25/24, 05/12/24, 05/23/24, 05/30/24, and 06/07/24.

If you have the recalled product in your home, please do not eat it, throw it away or return it to any Trader Joe’s for a full refund.

In case you experienced Hepatitis A symptoms such as fever, nausea, abdominal cramps, diarrhea, dark-colored urine, and jaundice (a yellowing of the skin), it is important to report it. It can help to detect & resolve issues and prevent others from being harmed, and it enables better surveillance.

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