Nothing can disturb your business or holiday trip more than a possible food poisoning. If you go for eating or drinking the wrong things you might have to trap in your hotel room. Food poisoning not only makes you absolutely miserable, but also spoil the entire enthusiasm of your entire travel.
Food poisoning is the sickness caused due to intake of contaminated food. The most common reasons for food poisoning include Bacteria, Viruses, Parasites or their toxins. These microorganisms easily contaminate the food during food manufacturing or processing.
Nausea, vomiting or diarrhea is the most obvious symptoms of food poisoning. It can initiate within a few hours of eating contaminated food.
If you have caught food poisoning during the travel, then you are not the first one to extract it. Diarrhea affects about 30-70% of travellers, according to the Centers for Disease Control. Some of the destinations are exposed to more risks, food poisoning can strike you anywhere due to poor hygienic conditions in the restaurants.
Unfortunately, you can never prevent food poisoning, if you are not careful while choosing the food at your destination. There are a few foods that are exposed to more risks, like raw meats and seafood.
Make sure to avoid food poisoning, so that the joy of your trip is not spoiled. You must consider the below red flags:
You must avoid all types of buffets – because the dishes that are warmed expose to a greater risk of getting contaminated. Always opt for the food that is freshly cooked and served right away.
Avoid taking food from street vendors as there is a strong chance that those foods might be contaminated during the manufacturing and handling process. Avoid using unpasteurized dairy products, like milk and ice-cream.
Opt for the fruits that you have to peel yourself like Avocados, Bananas, and Oranges. Un- peelable fruits like Grapes and Berries, are exposed to lots of risks, hence you must avoid taking it while travelling.
While talking about the beverages, you must try to drink bottled water. You must avoid water from the tap or well to minimize the risk of food poisoning. I would recommend using bottled water even for brushing your teeth. If you have to consume local water, make sure to boil it for three minutes.
It is okay to drink alcohol during travelling, but avoid adding ice cubes in it. This is so you might not use the ice cubes made from local contaminated water. Try to avoid mixed fruit juices as they might contain some quantity of local water too. You can drink canned or bottled drinks without any hesitation unless you break the container seal yourself. While ordering the hot beverages like tea or coffee, keep a note that they are being served steaming hot to ensure that water used in them has been boiled properly.
Sometimes you are the one responsible for your food contamination too! Make sure to wash your hands before eating, either with a hand-sanitizer, soap or water. There must be 60% alcohol in your hand sanitizer.
Some of the doctors recommend passengers to pack Bismuth Subsalicylate (BSS), an active Pepto-Bismol ingredient. According to certain studies, taking two tablets four times a day can considerably help the passengers to reduce the risk of catching diarrhea from 40% to just 14%.
While eating local foods at the destination, you must understand that food standards will not be similar to your country. It is quite possible that your food is touched with the bare hands by the local chef. You actually cannot avoid such things while travelling and have to compromise a few times while eating out in your travelling place. But there are a few signs that you can look for while choosing your food to minimize the risk of getting sick:
- Check out the tongs and utensils used for handling food
- Food covers and protectors like wrap, lids or spinning fans
- Dishes are freshly prepared
- The food is hot/steaming hot
- Hair covers and gloves are being used while preparing the food
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