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Risk Factors And Complications Of Trichinosis

Compromised Preparation Of Food

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The compromised preparation of food is one of the leading causes of trichinosis. To prepare food properly, experts recommend the use of a food thermometer when cooking meat. It is especially important to cook meat to the proper temperature; the cooking process kills the parasite that causes trichinosis. Poultry should be cooked to a minimum of 165 degrees Fahrenheit, and wild game and ground meat need to be cooked to a temperature of at least 160 degrees Fahrenheit. Whole cuts of meat should be cooked to at least 145 degrees Fahrenheit. In addition to cooking food to a safe temperature, it is important to clean all meat grinders properly after use. Patients should know freezing wild game may not be sufficient to kill Trichinella, and smoking, drying, salting, and microwaving meat does not kill the parasite.

In fact, homemade sausage and jerky has been the main cause of trichinosis in recent years. However, experts note freezing pork in sections less than six inches thick for a period of at least twenty days can effectively kill Trichinella; for this to work, the pork must be frozen at a temperature of no more than five degrees Fahrenheit. After preparing raw meat, patients should always wash their hands with warm, soapy water for at least twenty seconds, and any cutting boards or other kitchen areas that came into contact with the meat should be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected as well.

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Emily Fowler
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