Food poisoning is one of the most
common causes of nausea and vomiting in adults. To prevent food poisoning:
- Follow the 2-40-140 rule. Don't eat meats, dressing, salads, or
other foods that have been kept between
40°F (4.4°C) and
140°F (60°C) for more than 2
- Be especially careful with large cooked meats, such as your
holiday turkey, which require a long time to cool. Thick parts of the meat may
stay over 40°F (4.4°C) long
enough to allow bacteria to grow.
- Use a thermometer to check your
refrigerator. It should be between
34°F (1.1°C) and
- Defrost meats in the refrigerator or the microwave,
not on the kitchen counter.
- Wash your hands, cutting boards, and
countertops often. After handling raw meats, especially chicken, wash your
hands and utensils before preparing other foods.
- The U.S.
Department of Agriculture (USDA) recommends that you reheat meats to over
140°F (60°C) for at least 10
minutes to destroy bacteria. Even then the bacteria may not be destroyed.
- Cook all meats to the recommended
temperature. See how to
cook foods to prevent food poisoning.
- Cook hamburger well done.
Cook chicken until the juices run clear.
- Cover meats and poultry
during microwave cooking to heat the surface of the meat.
- Do not eat raw eggs or uncooked sauces made with
- Keep party foods on ice.
- When you eat out, avoid
rare and uncooked meats or seafood. Eat salad bar and deli items before they
- Discard any cans or jars with bulging lids or
- Follow home canning and freezing instructions carefully.
Contact your county agricultural extension office for advice.
you think that food may have been stored in your refrigerator for too long,
don't take the chance. Throw it out.
For more information, see the topic
Food Poisoning and Safe Food Handling.
Increase your chance of staying healthy
- Washing your hands often, especially
during winter months when
viral illnesses are most common.
- Keeping your
hands away from your nose, eyes, and mouth. Viruses are most likely to enter
your body through these areas.
- Eating a healthy and
- Getting regular
- Not smoking. Smoking irritates the lining of your nose,
sinuses, and lungs, which may increase your risk for problems from a viral
You can help prevent influenza by getting
immunized with an influenza vaccine each year, as soon as it's available. The "flu shot" is given by injection. This form of the
vaccine prevents most cases of the flu.
Even if a flu shot does not
prevent the flu, the vaccine can make your flu symptoms milder and decrease the
risk of problems from the flu.