Salmonella Poisoning (Salmonellosis)

Salmonella Poisoning (Salmonellosis)
About 40,000 yearly reported cases of salmonella poisoning (salmonellosis) occur in the US. Chances are, if you have ever experienced the “24 hour stomach flu,” what you really had was a mild case of salmonella poisoning.

"What is salmonella?”
Salmonella, along with E. coli are harmful bacteria that live in the intestinal tract of humans and animals. Birds and reptiles are major carriers of the salmonella bacteria, and handling chicks, turtles and other reptilian pets do cause individual cases of salmonella poisoning. Because the animals feces gets on their feathers and skin, when they are handled, petted or kissed particularly by children, the salmonella can become ingested. Food can also be contaminated, either at home, in restaurants, farms or in processing plants.

"What are the symptoms of salmonellosis?"
  • Diarrhea or constipation
  • Stomach cramps
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Headache
  • Fever
  • Blood in the stool (possibly)

    "How does food become contaminated by salmonella?"
    There are several ways the salmonella bacteria can find its way into foods. Occasionally, meat packing plant workers can slice or nick the animal’s intestines and feces spills onto the meat. Chicken eggs exit through the same opening that the feces exits, so it gets on the eggshell. If commercial crop harvesters don’t wash their hands after using the restroom, they can contaminate peanuts, fruits or vegetables. If restaurant workers fail to wash their hands, it can be spread that way. At home, if raw meat that contains salmonella comes in contact with other foods, salmonella poisoning can occur. Serving undercooked meat, using an unwashed cutting board that has had contact with raw meat, or handling food with unwashed hands can all cause salmonellosis. Anyone who has salmonellosis and still has diarrhea can spread it by not washing their hands. Children, the elderly and those with weak immune systems are most likely to get infected.

    "How can I avoid getting salmonella poisoning?"
  • Always wash your hands after handling pets, particularly chicks and reptiles (children should never play with chicks and reptiles)
  • Always wash your hands after using the restroom
  • When cooking at home, never store or chop raw meat together with other foods
  • Cook meat thoroughly (like E.coli, thorough cooking kills salmonella bacteria)
  • Take probiotics daily (the “good” bacteria in probiotics boosts the immune system and balances out the ratio between the “good” and harmful bacteria, which lessons the chance of getting ill from exposure.)
  • Buy local or organic meat and produce

    *Please know that I am not a medical doctor or a health practitioner. I cannot diagnose your stomach problems nor can I guarantee a cure. I am here to share my knowledge, which applications have worked for me and to offer suggestions of where you may go physically, emotionally and spiritually for healing and self-empowerment. If you choose to explore alternative medicine, do not independently stop taking your prescribed medications. Always consult with your current doctor as well as your new practitioner when changing your medical program. Find a Naturopath near you.

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