Charles woke up that fateful day like every other day and went about his daily activity.
Work was hectic with lots of locomotion all around so much more that he forgot to eat anything.
At some minutes past four that day, He realised he was hungry. In bewilderment, he told his colleagues he didn’t understand why he was hungry again. He was told he hadn’t actually eaten all day and was advised to eat .
Charles began to think about two things. One was the fact that there was no good restaurant around after the closure of Leila’s Place, the exquisite restaurant around the area and the other was due to the time of the day, hence he had only one option, Baba Bright
Baba Bright happens to be the name of a Calabar Kitchen around the corner and has been saving lives since 1809. He is known for his great Afang soup and the delightsome edikaikong. As soon as he remembered, his taste buds came to life and he ordered for a plate of eba with egusi soup. The food arrived and in no time, Charles devoured it. The rest is history.
Few minutes after, he became weak and the restroom became his acquaintance. He was shocked and before the sun was fully set, he was almost half-gone. Alas, Charles had been poisoned!!
He spoke to a friend and he was told it was food poisoning.
What is Food Poisoning?
It is an illness caused by bacteria or other toxins in food, typically with vomiting and diarrhoea. It is sometimes called gastroenteritis.
People infected with food-borne organisms may be symptom-free or may have symptoms ranging from mild intestinal discomfort to severe dehydration and bloody diarrhea. Depending on the type of infection, people can even die as a result of food poisoning.
More than 250 different diseases can cause food poisoning. Some of the most common diseases are infections caused by bacteria, such as Campylobacter, Salmonella, Shigella, E. coli O157:H7, Listeria, botulism, and norovirus.
It is worthy to note that Food Poisoning doesn’t mean that someone has poisoned you but that some micro-organismic infections.
How To Prevent Food Poisoning
- Make sure that food from animal sources (meat, dairy, eggs) is cooked thoroughly or pasteurized. Use a thermometer to check the temperature of the food.
- Avoid eating raw or spoiled meats and eggs. Check expiration dates on meats and eggs before purchasing and again before preparing.
- Carefully select and prepare fish and shellfish to ensure quality and freshness.
- If you are served an undercooked meat or egg product in a restaurant, send it back for further cooking. You should also ask for a new plate.
- Be careful that you don’t let juices or drippings from raw meat, poultry, shellfish, or eggs contaminate other foods.
- Do not leave eggs, meats, poultry, seafood, or milk for extended periods of time at room temperature. Promptly refrigerate leftovers and food prepared in advance.
- Wash your hands, cutting boards, and knives with antibacterial soap and warm to hot water after handling raw meat, poultry, seafood, or eggs. Wooden cutting boards are not recommended, because they can be harder to clean.
- Avoid unpasteurized milk or foods made from unpasteurized milk.
- Do not thaw foods at room temperature. Thaw foods in the refrigerator and use them promptly. Do not refreeze foods once they have been completely thawed.
- Keep the refrigerator at 40 degrees Farenheit or lower, and the freezer at 0 degrees Farenheit or lower.
- Wash raw vegetables and fruits thoroughly before eating, especially those that will not be cooked. Avoid eating alfalfa sprouts until their safety can be assured. Methods to decontaminate alfalfa seeds and sprouts are being investigated.
- Drink only pasteurized juice or cider. Commercial juice with an extended shelf life that is sold at room temperature (juice in cardboard boxes, vacuum sealed juice in glass containers) has been pasteurized, although this is generally not indicated on the label. Juice concentrates are also heated sufficiently to kill bacteria.
- If you are ill with diarrhea or vomiting, do not prepare food for others, especially infants, the elderly, and those with weakened immune systems, because they are more vulnerable to infection.
- Wash hands with soap after handling reptiles, turtles, birds, or after contact with human or pet feces.
- Breastfeed your baby if possible. Mother’s milk is the safest food for young infants. Breastfeeding may prevent many food-borne illnesses and other health problems.
- Cook foods until they are steaming hot, especially leftover foods or ready-to-eat foods, such as hot dogs.
First Aid Treatment
1. Drink plenty of water
2. Prepare or buy ORS (Oral Rehydration Solution) : It involves drinking water with modest amounts of sugar and salt added, while continuing to eat.This would help arrest dehydration
3. Consult your doctor is symptoms persist