only is food necessary for life, itís one of the greatest joys of being alive.
Thatís why food-borne illness, and even death, is so devastatingly tragic. So
to avoid being poisoned by your favorite food, keep an eye out for these ten
meals that are most likely to harbor dangerous bacteria.
to a study by the U.S. Centers for Disease Prevention, contaminated chicken takes the cake for most
food-related deaths. Make sure you wash your hands for 20 seconds before and
after handling raw meat, use separate cutting boards, and maintain temperature
by using thermometers and storing at 40 degrees F and below.
it or not, rice is also a possible infector, if you
donít be cool about it. Meaning you should store your leftover cooked rice in
the fridge, lest Bacillus cereus start growing and make you
containing mayonnaise can make you sick after
sitting out for too long, although food safety scientist Doug Powell feels that
most commercial mayo is safe, since
they use pasteurized eggs and lots of bacteria-controlling vinegar. But
homemade mayo still has its risks.
This melonís rough skin is
uniquely conducive to trapping bacteria, as when the Listeria outbreak occurred
in 2011, killing up to 16 people an sickening even more. Even salmonella can hide in the cracks, so
it just goes to confirm my stance that honeydew is the superior melon.
and Leafy Greens
to the same CDC study that determined chicken is
deadliest, ďAbout 1 in 5 illnesses were linked to leafy green vegetables.Ē The dangerous bacteria
found on these veggies and poultry is the norovirus, often spread by cooks and
food handlers. So always make sure to rinse off your produce first.
raw shellfish is a common harborer of
bacteria, since these guys can be exposed to raw waste underwater. The Vibrio
bacteria found in oysters can produce a toxin that attacks vulnerable livers.
some tout the benefits of drinking unpasteurized milk, it can
also contain bacteria like salmonella,
listeria, campylobacter and brucella. Young, old, and people with weak immune
systems are most at risk, but even if youíre healthy, youíre risking an
all-nighter in the can.
surprise to me, sprouts are also a breeding ground for bacteria. Thatís because
seeds and beans need warm, humid conditions to sprout, which are the
same conditions that bacteria like salmonella, listeria and E. coli need to
grow. So may want to avoid these threadlike veggies next time youíre having Pad
Salmonella can live
both on the outside of eggs, or get inside as the egg is forming. Lots of
regulations have made it harder for salmonella to spread, but still take
precautions by throwing out cracked or dirty eggs, and keeping them at safe
Lunch meats left sitting out can grow
bacteria in a few hours, so make sure to throw your picnic sandwiches back in
the cooler to preserve them safely.
Supermarkets and smaller purveyors of foodstuffs are designed to get you
in and out in two ways: One is the outer ring where you will find produce,
dairy, meats and fish, and frozen foods -- and with the exception of the
latter, if you stay to that outer ring, you will not see a lot of the things
you donít need to buy. Start spelunking those dastardly aisles on the
inner-ring that is the realm of expensive processed foods, however, and the
retail-twitchy among us are doomed. Unless you really do need Lucky Charms and
Flowers of Hawaii-scented teaÖ. (You do not.)
The Beer Bottle Cap Hat
This is a catch-all for the ridiculously silly or useless things that we
occasionally buy while we are out and about, especially with acquisitive
children who think cute or novel items are the fruit that grows on the
proverbial money tree.
Certain Types of Clothing (You Know What Iím Talking
Whether you are shopping online or in a store that sells
clothing, you should be on high alert. How many pairs of whatever just hit you
with the Stun Gun of Extreme Want do you really need? Take a deep breath, and
walk away from the re-issued 1950s jeans. Are they really worth $300? Shoes are
also a good example of this. Marilyn Monroe once said, ďGive a girl the right
shoes, and she can conquer the world.Ē This may be true, but if you are crippled by debt,
expensive shoes are not so much a good buy, as a good-bye to fiscal well-being.
How much extra does it cost to supersize something? Letís say you do that
four times a week: maybe itís $1 today, but if you do that once a week itís a
full $52 a year you could be saving, not to mention the extra trip (or two) to
The gaming industry increasingly allows gamers to download new video
games for free, but youíre going to pay dearly if you want to get cool stuff
that makes the game actually fun to play.
Not much to say here that you donít already know: It adds up. This
financial death by a thousand cuts will not only leave you an angry bird, but
the pigs will happily grunt all the way to the bank. Save the money, and the
time you spent on being ďless productiveĒ (i.e., completely useless).
Theme Parks & Midway Games of Chance
While thereís a vague sense of accomplishment to have guided a claw to
the perfect spot for it to drop and seize the fluffy blue bunny for the love of
your life, itís also really a lot more expensive than simply buying one. The
theme park rides arenít anywhere near the scariest part of the trip. Itís $100
per person for starters, then thereís parking, food and anything and everything
else you buy at the theme park. Camping, anyone?
You stand a better chance of being picked by Adam, Shakira, Usher or
Blake to be on The Voice than winning these things. ĎNuff said.
Latte & Lunch
Consider brown-bagging it and drinking the coffee at work
-- or bring a Thermos with you! The average American spends more than $3,000 a
year on lunch and coffee, according
to a recent study.
While saving money might be less fun in the short run, it
gets easier and more rewarding once you decide to do it and see the fruits of
your self-control as your bank balances start to lift. Furthermore, if your
love of impulse buying is leading you to spend more than you earn, the
interest you pay from carrying debt will eat away at your future efforts to
save. If youíre maxing out your credit cards, too, your credit scores will feel
the pain, which will lead to higher
interest rates Ė and probably less savings Ė for you in the long run.
If you are rigorous, you can have a six-month cushion in
the bank in no time -- but you have to take the first step, which in many cases
is a non-step. Leave the items on the shelf (virtual or otherwise) and keep
your wallet in your pocket.
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