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How can I prevent food poisoning from meat?

To prevent food poisoning from meat, follow these tips:
  • When shopping, select meat towards the end of the shopping trip to keep the meat temperature colder.
  • Place the meat in the plastic bags available in the meat department to keep raw meat juices off the rest of your food.
  • Keep a designated shopping bag for meat or a cooler in the car.
Once home, follow these safe food preparation tips:
  • Do not leave meat out at room temperature for longer than 2 hours; 1 hour if the temperature is above 90 degrees.
  • Do not put cooked meat back on the same platter that held the raw meat.
  • Never use the marinade you used prior to cooking to baste on cooking meats.
  • Use separate cutting boards for meats and vegetables.
  • Wash your hands often.
Lastly, you cannot determine the “doneness” of meat just by the color. Use an instant-read thermometer. Ground meats and pork should be at least 160 degrees, poultry at least 165 degrees and beef at least 145 degrees.

This content originally appeared on http://www.livehealthyaustin.com/
Bryce B. Wylde
Alternative & Complementary Medicine
Many North Americans will succumb to food poisoning this year from undercooked or improperly handled meat. If you take chances, bacteria like salmonella, campylobacter, listeria, and E. coli sure can put a damper on any meal. So right from the point of purchase, carefully choose selections that are cold and tightly wrapped for freshness, and be sure to check the 'best before' dates. Don't be shy to request smaller cuts at the meat counter as this may minimize your concern about how to store extra meat. If you don't plan to use your meat within one to three days, freeze it immediately.

Alternatively, it can be stored in the fridge for up to three days maximum, or in the freezer for up to six months; airtight packaging will prevent freezer burn. Defrost meat in the refrigerator overnight -- never at room temperature -- and be sure to examine your fridge for meat juices dripping onto other foods. It's highly recommended that you store meat at the bottom of the fridge. An important thing to note is that eggs are porous and if meat juices drip onto a carton of eggs, you should immediately wash them and re-refrigerate or discard the eggs in order to prevent contamination.

When preparing meat, be sure to wash your hands thoroughly before and after handling. Use two different cutting boards: one for raw meat and the other for vegetables and other foods in order to prevent cross-contamination. Refrigerate any leftovers within two hours. Lastly, invest in a meat thermometer, they're easy to use and can reassure you that meat has been safely and adequately cooked.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.