A parasite needs a
host that it can feed off. It causes illness by living and feeding off
a host organism. Most parasites are
transmited to humans through water contaminated with fecal matter;
animals that are fed an unsafe food supply and food handlers with poor
personal hygiene. Symptoms can range from mild stomach cramps,
diarrhea, nausea and vomiting
to ulcers, anemia, muscle pain with possible muscle damage.
Some parasites are very painful such as Trichinella
spiralis (Trichinosis) as it goes directly into muscle and forma a
spiral. Infection occurs commonly in certain wild carnivorous
(meat-eating) animals but may also occur in domestic pigs. In people Trichinellosis is caused by
eating raw or undercooked meat of animals infected with the larvae of a
species of Trichinella worm.
Some other examples of parasites are Giardia lamblia and Entamoeba
Giardia is most commonly transmited through contaminated surface water.
It can be transmited from person to person (or food) if hands are not
washed properly because it has
Food handlesrs with these parasites, with or without
symptoms, can contaminate food by not washing their hands after using
the washroom and handling food. Also, washing raw vegetables and fruits
with contaminated water can spread parasites.
Prevention of parasitic
- Use a safe
drinking water supply
- It is very
important to use only inspected meat products (use only government
- Cook hazardous
foods thoroughly (if meat is not cooked properly, humans can eat the
live parasite and become infected)
- Practice good
personal hygiene (proper handwashing)
meat (salting), drying, smoking, or microwaving meat does not
consistently kill parasites.
|Did You Know?
(especially E. coli) may be used to replicate DNA in the form of a
plasmid. This DNA is often chemically modified in vitro then inserted
into bacteria to select for the desired traits and isolate the desired
product from by-products of the reaction. After growing the bacteria
and thereby replicating the DNA, the DNA may be further modified and
inserted into other organisms. More...
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grow best in
the temperature range between 4ºC and 60ºC. Temperature below
4ºC, and temperature between 60ºC and 74ºC, will not
kill bacteria, but it will not allow them to multiply enough times to
cause an illness. In order to kill pathogenic bacteria you need
temperatures above 74ºC. Temperature is the easiest factor to
control in order to prevent bacterial growth.
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intoxication will typically have shorter incubation period than
infection (with sudden onset), which usually only lasts one day and
fever is rarely present. More...
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food and equipment, poorly washed dishes and multi-service articles
have potential to spread pathogenic bacteria and open the door for
dangerous foodborne diseases. More...