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Risks of Food Borne Illness
(NC)—According to a Health Canada survey, you could be at higher risk for severe foodborne illness and not even know it.
Experts at Health Canada have identified four groups of people whose age, health status and other factors put them at an increased risk of serious complications from foodborne illness: children aged five and under, adults aged 60 and over, pregnant women, and people with weakened immune systems.
If you or a member of your family fall into one of the four groups listed above, talk to your primary care provider about your increased risk and ways to stay healthy.
And remember, anybody can get sick from improperly cooked or handled food. Following the four basic principles of safe food handling is still the best way to protect yourself and your family from foodborne illness:
• Cook: Be sure to cook food to a safe internal temperature. Check this by using a digital food thermometer.
• Clean: Wash your hands and surfaces often with warm, soapy water.
• Chill: Refrigerate food and leftovers promptly at 4°C or below.
• Separate: Always separate your raw foods, such as meat and eggs, from cooked foods and vegetables.
Relevant information and support targeted to each of the four at-risk groups is available at www.healthycanadians.gc.ca/foodsafety, as well as general tips on food safety. Be sure to check out the downloadable brochures and interactive guides for safe food handling at home and at the grocery store.
All of the guides found on the website are also available by calling toll-free, 1-800-O-Canada.