15 Tips To Avoid Food Poisoning While Traveling

Guest Post – Thanks Teena!

There’s a great deal of variance between the food safety and sanitation practices followed in different countries, and the same is true amongst different regions of the same country. This makes it imperative that you, the traveler, take every possible precaution to guard against food poisoning.

Read Restaurant Reviews

You can tell a great deal about the quality of the food by reading previous complaints of food poisoning. Even if the restaurant in question has improved its offerings, it’s best to stay away.

Avoid Tap Water

No matter where you travel, avoid tap water. Either carry bottled mineral water with you at all times, or ask your hotel to boil water for ten minutes and fill up a few bottles for you.

Research Native Diseases And Food-Borne Illnesses

If you are visiting a different country, it’s best to know everything that you can about native diseases and food-borne illnesses. Look up the Center for Disease Control’s website for a list of food-borne diseases in different countries.

Exert Caution

Always remember that native people have been exposed to the native microorganisms, parasites and germs in their environment since childhood. So don’t be brave and try out local food that’s not prepared using strict hygiene standards, even if you’re tempted.

Watch The Cooking Process

If you must eat outside on road stalls, watch the cook in action. Does the cook wear gloves while handling the food? Does the cook wash his or her hands often? What is the condition of the cook’s nails? How clean are the cook’s clothes? Be sure to check the water that’s used to cook the food as well.

Evaluate The Locals That Eat At A Road Stall

Before you decide to eat at a road stall, evaluate the stall’s patrons. If well-dressed, educated people are eating there, it’s a good bet that the stall is fairly hygienic.

Eat Smaller Portions

Eating small portions limits your exposure to potential contamination from pathogens in the food. Depending on your resistance to these pathogens, your body may not react negatively to small portions, but will react if you eat large portions of the food.

Avoid Beverages Containing Ice

Restaurants use tap water to make ice in their freezers. Freezing does not kill several strains of bacteria, and a freezer that’s not been cleaned for ages will become home to multiple strains of bacteria. Avoid drinking any beverages that come with ice cubes. Read these guidelines put up by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) on how to drink safe water.

Avoid Raw Veggies And Fruits

Raw vegetables and fruits are likely to contain more bacteria if they’re not washed thoroughly. Don’t order a salad at a restaurant unless you’re sure of the restaurant’s reputation. Buy fresh fruit from farmer’s markets to avoid pesticides. Eat only those fruits that have a thick, protective peel on them such as bananas and oranges.

Drink Milk With Care

Milk is not pasteurized as per standards in all countries. No matter what kind of milk you buy, boil it in a clean vessel and let it simmer for a couple of minutes. This will destroy the bacteria. Don’t buy cheese, yoghurt or butter unless they’ve been recently manufactured and stored under the recommended temperatures.

Shop At Large Supermarkets

When you’re traveling abroad, it’s best to shop at large supermarkets as these will ensure their reputation by stocking the right stuff. Check product labels and expiry dates. Always check with the shop assistants if you’re not sure about a label.

Exert Care While Eating Eggs And Seafood

It’s best to avoid eating egg dishes, meat dishes or seafood dishes unless the restaurant comes very highly recommended. Remember to speak to the chef and find out if the dish was kept covered after cooking. Don’t eat any seafood unless it’s completely cooked.

Don’t Order From The Menu

Some restaurants make standard menu dishes in advance and keep them refrigerated. This gives rise to additional contamination even if the food is cooked properly. Avoid ordering standard dishes and ask the chef to cook you basic stuff like boiled eggs or steamed veggies.

Be Aware Of Ingredients

Before ordering your dish, be aware of what goes into it. Raw eggs are used in some sauces and foods. Partially cooked meat and partially cooked shrimp are used in some exotic dishes. Anything that is not fully cooked should create suspicion in you and you should avoid them.

Wash Your Hands Often

Sometimes the food you eat might be clean but might get contaminated because of your dirty hands. Always carry hand sanitizers and pocket sized anti-bacterial soaps and wipes with you. Make sure you clean the inside of your nails as well before touching food.

Author Bio:
Teena Celis is a freelance writer working for gift ideas company Adrenaline that offers a large range of father’s day gifts for fathers all across Australia.

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