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What Are the Common Causes of Food Poisoning in Illinois?

Posted on in Personal Injury Attorney

Arlington Heights food poisoning injury attorney

Many people suffer from foodborne illnesses, also referred to as food poisoning, each year. Whether it is caused by food purchased at the grocery store or meals prepared at a restaurant, foodborne illnesses can have health consequences that are more serious than just an upset stomach. Common symptoms include vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, fever, and chills. These symptoms can be easily managed by those with strong immune systems, but children, pregnant women, elderly individuals, and those with other diseases can have difficulty fighting these types of illnesses. According to the CDC, 48 million people get sick, 128,000 are hospitalized, and 3,000 individuals die from foodborne illnesses each year.

Three Common Causes of Foodborne Illnesses

  1. Viruses: Foodborne illnesses caused by viruses can be directly attributed to those who are already infected. If proper hygiene is not used by those preparing food, viruses can be spread through the food. “Employees must wash hands” signs in restaurant bathrooms are present to remind employees that waste residue can give customers foodborne illnesses. Contaminated water used during the preparation process is another common cause of such illnesses.

  2. Parasites: Similar to viruses, parasites can get attached to food through inadequate hygiene practices. Both animal and human waste residue can cause these parasites to spread through the water used in the preparation process.

  3. Chemicals: Toxins found in fish can cause illnesses for consumers. Fish that feed on algae that produce toxins, and those that are not properly refrigerated can create toxic chemicals that are then consumed. Unwashed fruits and vegetables can have high traces of pesticides, which is another common way to accidentally ingest toxic chemicals.

Steps That Should Be Taken to Prevent Foodborne Illnesses

Foodborne illnesses are easy to avoid if proper care is given to hygiene and food preparation before cooking. Washing hands with warm water and soap before cooking is the first step that should be taken, especially after handling raw meat or using the bathroom. Fruits and vegetables should also be rinsed before cooking to ensure that all chemicals are removed. It is crucial to make sure that refrigerators and freezers are at the proper temperature. Refrigerators should store food at 40 degrees F, and freezers should not be above 0 degrees F. It is also important to check the temperature of food while cooking meat. Inserting a thermometer into the meat is a good way to ensure that food is fully cooked before serving. If these procedures are not followed by restaurant personnel, customers can experience serious injuries from food poisoning.

Contact a Rolling Meadows Food Poisoning Injury Attorney

While avoiding contracting a foodborne illness can be easy at home, it is hard to know if the same preparation measures are being taken when going out to eat. Restaurants and grocery stores have a responsibility to provide their customers with safe food to eat. At Newland & Newland, LLP, we have a network of toxicologists, microbiologists, and other food experts who can help prove that your illness was due to the negligence of others. If you believe that you have contracted a foodborne illness, contact our Schaumburg, IL personal injury attorneys immediately at 847-797-8000 for a free consultation.

Sources:

https://stopfoodborneillness.org/awareness/what-is-foodborne-illness/

https://www.cdc.gov/foodsafety/foodborne-germs.html

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