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Don't eat undercooked chicken

When chicken is not fully cooked - even only slightly pink -  you run the risk of a condition known as salmonellosis. If you suspect you have eaten undercooked chicken and are suffering from adverse effects, contact your local GP immediately.

Raw and undercooked chicken might be contaminated with a bacteria called Salmonella, which is only killed if chicken is cooked to the proper minimum internal temperature. Use a meat thermometer to check your cooked chicken reaches 74 degrees Celsius.

When handling raw chicken there are several precautions that help prevent salmonellosis:

Cross-contamination is a major factor in spreading Salmonella bacteria. When storing raw chicken (especially when defrosting frozen chicken) always place it at the bottom of your refrigerator so that juices from it don't drip onto other foods.

When chicken is raw or undercooked, any surfaces the chicken comes into contact with can become contaminated with Salmonella. For example, if you prepare chicken at home and then use the same cutting board to chop vegetables - without thoroughly sanitizing it first - the vegetables will also become contaminated. This means that someone who consumes the cut veggies can get sick, even if they don't eat undercooked chicken.

Always check your cooked chicken with a thermometer to ensure it reaches 74 degrees Celsius. Test the chicken in several areas and put the thermometer in as deeply as possible, without hitting the bone.

When dining out you cannot control how the chicken is handled, but you can check that chicken is fully cooked and not pink.

Symptoms of Salmonellosis

Salmonella bacteria leads to a condition called salmonellosis. If infected, you'll probably experience symptoms within 6 to 72 hours after consuming the contaminated food. Symptoms are typically related to your gastrointestinal tract and includes severe diarrhea, abdominal cramps, nausea and possibly vomiting. Headaches, chills, fatigue and fever are also often associated with salmonellosis.

While symptoms should resolve on their own within four to seven days, your body will lose a large amount of fluids if you suffer from diarrhea and vomiting. Staying well-hydrated is essential. If you cannot hold down solid foods or liquids, chew on ice chips to get some fluid into your system. Consume clear liquid foods, such as gelatin, lemon-lime soda, broth and sports drinks, as long as you can tolerate them.

 

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