Steps to Eating Safer During the Crisis…No One is Immune, So Take Care by Donna Rosenbaum, MS

While we’ve received assurances to date that our food supply is safe and that COVID-19 is not transmitted through foods, we still need to protect ourselves from potentially ill food handlers.

At Home

·        Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds before and after preparing foods.

·        Don’t share dishes, drinking glasses, cups, eating utensils—educate even your young children on this.

·        Use your dishwasher on hot cycle whenever possible.

Dining Out

·        Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds before and after eating.

·        Use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol content if no soap and water available.

·        If you need to travel, bring sealed prepared food with you whenever possible.

·        Avoid all salad bars and buffets if they are still available in your area.

Supporting Local Restaurants with Takeout

·        Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds before eating delivered food or food brought in.

·        Don’t eat cold prepared foods such as salads and sandwiches that you don’t prepare yourself — they don’t have heat kill steps. This is especially recommended for high-risk populations.

·        Choose HOT FOODS to better ensure safety. Re-heat them in an oven or microwave. The recommended 

temperature is 145.4 Fahrenheit or 63 Celsius for 4 minutes.

·        For more guidance, refer to this Article from ANSES, the French Agency for Food, Environmental and Occupational Health & Safety.

Controversy on What to Take if You Have a Fever…Be Careful with Ibuprofen

·        A Tweet last weekend from the French Health Minister went viral. He ignited a long-standing debate in the medical community about the use of anti-inflammatory medicines (such as Advil, etc.) when treating fevers.  Please consult your doctor for advice specific to your health and situation.

·        Great Background Article on medicines and COVID-19, from The Atlantic magazine.

Elbow Bump Greetings??… Maybe Not

·        With people sneezing into the crook of their arms, re-think elbow bumps when greeting each other.  When a nod or hand wave will do, stay safer and don’t elbow bump!

Resources

·        CDC Guidance for anyone in households with those either COVID-19 positive OR under investigation.

This is a guest post by Donna Emanuel Rosenbaum of Food Safety Partners

Donna Rosenbaum is the CEO and lead consultant for Food Safety Partners, Ltd. of Northbrook, Illinois. Food Safety Partners is a national food safety consulting firm that specializes in consumer-based projects. She became devoted to food safety in 1992 when E. coli disease claimed the life of her daughter’s best friend as the first victim in the Jack in the Box outbreak.  

Email her at donna.foodsafety@gmail.com.

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