Hand Washing is Paramont To Food Safety

Wash Your Hands Often – How Much?

Wash your hands continually regardless of the situation. It’s better to wash your hands then to leave them dirty and nasty. The more you wash your hands the easier it will become to repeat. Washing your hands is one of the best steps you can take in order to stay healthy and avoid contagious diseases. It is a good habit to get into, and there are specific times when it is especially important to wash your hands. Here are some of the circumstances in which you should wash them thoroughly.

After Coughing or Blowing Your Nose

First of all, you should cough and sneeze into the inside of your elbow instead of your hand. But it is a good idea to wash your hands after coughing or blowing your nose either way. There are always tiny amounts of nasal mucus that stay on your hands after using a Kleenex that need to be washed off. If you don’t wash them off, this germ-filled fluid will transfer onto everything you touch, and will then expose everyone else to it.

Before Eating or Cooking

You should always wash your hands before eating. With all the germs that accumulate on your hands throughout the day, it is important that they be removed. Otherwise they will pass onto your fork and food, and into your mouth where they can begin to wreak havoc on your body.

After Using the Bathroom

Always wash your hands completely after using the bathroom. Whether you are at home or in a public restroom, it is important to do this without fail. When you do not wash your hands after using the toilet, you are spreading germs from bodily waste that needs to stay contained.

After Touching Garbage

Taking out the trash? Be sure to stop at the bathroom to wash your hands on the way back indoors. Even the outside of the trash bag contains enough germs to pass a variety of illnesses on to you.

After Riding Public Transit and Being in Public

Whether you are seated and resting your arms and hands on the seat, or standing and holding onto a rail, public transit is loaded with germs and viruses. When you exit public transit, wipe your hands with a wet wipe or hand sanitizer. When you get home, do a thorough cleaning with warm water and soap.

Before and After Cleaning Wounds

Cleaning and treating wounds is essential and unavoidable. However, always remember to clean your hands before and after. Cleaning before prevents complications in the wound, and cleaning after prevents any blood-borne illness from reaching others.

After Touching Animals and Related Items

Animals are best friends to many humans, but they carry many germs that can make humans ill. After touching animals or cleaning up after them, give your hands a good wash. This is in the best interest of you and anyone else that is around.

The Correct Way to Wash Your Hands

It is not enough to haphazardly rinse your hands and wipe them dry. When you wash your hands, it needs to be done thoroughly and carefully. Use soap and water that is as warm as you can tolerate. Wash and scrub for at least 20 seconds and then wipe them on a clean towel.

Many diseases and conditions could be eliminated or at least avoided if everyone washed their hands regularly. Listed above are certain times where it is especially important to do so. Do your part to cut down on illness by washing your hands every time you should.

Do’s and Don’ts When Handling Meat

Meat is a part of many individuals’ meals and diet. There is a proper way to handle it in order to prevent food-borne illness. Here are some rules to follow when you are cooking with meat.

Wash Your Hands Thoroughly before Handling

Before handling the meat, or any food, be sure to wash your hands thoroughly with warm water and soap. Even if you don’t feel that you have been exposed to many germs since your last hand washing, wash them directly before preparing the food anyway. Anything on your hands can make it into your food, and because germs and bacteria are too small to be seen, there is always a risk when your hands go unwashed.

Wash Your Hands Thoroughly after Handling Raw Meat

Raw meat contains harmful bacteria that is only made safe by cooking it to the proper temperature. Every time you touch raw meat, your hands become a vehicle by which this bacteria can spread. Wash them a few times with warm water and soap, and be sure to clean under your fingernails or anywhere else the bacteria may be hiding.

Be Careful When Pets Are Around

Think your pet is too well-mannered to get into the food when you are not around? Think again. Animals are tempted by food, and leaving meat unattended in the kitchen is just asking for trouble. Cats have been known to walk across the counter when their owner has slipped out for even a few minutes, and dogs that are high enough to reach the counter can make contact with the food as well.

Don’t Allow Cross-Contamination

Always be vigilant not to allow cross-contamination in your kitchen. When handling meat, and especially raw meat, keep it separate from safer foods. Try to prepare fruits, raw vegetables and other ready-to-serve items before handling the raw meat, in order to cut down the risk of this type of cross-contamination.

Use completely separate parts of the kitchen to prepare meat, since the raw juices of meat can easily splash other food items that are nearby.

Wash Everything Thoroughly That the Raw Meat Touches

When you cut or otherwise prepare raw meat, be sure to clean any utensils and surfaces that come in contact with it. It is not enough to wipe it down, even when used along with soap. Cutting boards and plates should go into the dishwasher so as to be heated and washed intensely. You can also spritz them with vinegar, then 3% hydrogen peroxide and then rinse them well.

Utensils and other items should be stashed in the dishwasher immediately so they are not accidentally used for any other food preparation. Wash the sink thoroughly as well with soap and hot water, and then either the vinegar and hydrogen peroxide mix or a bit of bleach.

Cooking meat requires knowledge of basic food safety. It is important not to experiment when it comes to the safe handling of these particular foods. Follow these guidelines and you will be able to enjoy a great meal and keep everyone healthy at the same time.