Pouring on the gravy is easy to do. Everything tastes better slathered in this flavorful sauce. Thanksgiving dinner would cease to exist without gravy. However, at restaurants, you might be advised to order a meal that doesn’t come with gravy. Especially, this is true at the buffet counter.
If gravy sits out too long at an inadequate temperature, below 140 F, Clostridium perfringens, bacteria that cause food poisoning, grows. The foodborne illness is unpleasant, with cramps and diarrhea lasting about 24 hours, but it can be fatal. It’s fairly common and is responsible for about 1 million cases per year. Hold the gravy.
It’s tempting to go for the fried wontons. You arrive at the restaurant half-famished, and these sumptuous treats are less pricey and more tempting than other appetizer options. But wait! If you eat just a few, you’ve already consumed enough to constitute a dinner, and the requisite sweet and sour dipping sauce only makes them an even more unhealthy dish.
Stuffed with cream cheese and imitation crab or shrimp, in general, each is also packed with over one hundred calories and 19 grams of fat. Perhaps a fresh vegetable spring roll will better tide you over.
French fries are a no-brainer, right? Perhaps we should have left them off the list. Everyone knows they are crispy little trans fat sticks. On top of that, the fry metabolizes very quickly into carbs, ergo the dreaded sugars that spike insulin production flood your system. But, did you know french fries also contain a significant amount of acrylamide?
What’s acrylamide? The substance is formed by high-heat reactions while cooking starchy foods. The EPA says it is “likely to be carcinogenic to humans.”
Sandwiches are one type of food that can harbor Staphylococcus aureus, or a “staph” infection. If you contract the infection, you will know it right away. Severe symptoms of nausea, vomiting, cramps, and diarrhea can strike in 30 minutes.
It’s not uncommon for the symptoms, which last about one day, to hit you within six hours of consuming the tainted food. Sandwiches, as well as cheese products, salty foods like ham, eclairs, and pastries, and mixed salads like tuna, potato, and macaroni, are also common to staph. The reason is that the person preparing your food likely had an infection on their hand.
Always Look for Fully Cooked Chicken
A single drop from raw chicken can infect an unsuspecting diner. The Campylobacter bacteria lurks in uncooked chicken and other foods. The most common outbreaks, however, have occurred in poultry. According to the CDC, 24 percent of Campylobacter cases originate in chicken.
How do you know you’ve ingested the pathogen? Symptoms like bloody diarrhea, fever, cramps, and vomiting, last about a week and usually come on two to five days after consuming the meal. In cancer patients and those with AIDS, the infection can be deadly.