If you think that buying quality food from big fancy stores is enough for good health, you might need to give it a second thought. Even though buying quality food is a big stride in the right direction towards better health, it is important to understand that if food is not cooked safely, it can put you and your family’s health at risk. Here are a few important things to consider before you cook food and serve it to your family.
Wash your hands
Our health is in our hands, so make sure you wash your hands with warm water before and after you handle raw food. This will reduce the risk of cross-contamination or the spread of bacteria, which is the main cause of food poisoning. Your cleaning job does not end here, as you also need to clean countertops, cutting boards, and of course utensils with soap and warm water before you start cooking in your kitchen. If utensils are already washed, rinse at least once before you use them. No matter how fresh and clean the vegetables look, it is always safer to wash them at least once before eating, cutting, or cooking.
Separate raw food from ready-to-eat food
While buying food in a grocery store, make sure you do not mix raw meat, seafood, poultry and juices with packaged food. In order to prevent the juices of food from spilling onto other food items, get your food products packed in individual plastic bags. At home, do not put those plastic bags directly in the refrigerator. Keep them in containers, on plates, or sealed bags to prevent their juices from dripping out onto other foods. It would be better if you use a separate cutting board for seafood, meat, and poultry.
Use food thermometers
A lot of people have started using food thermometers these days as a health precautionary measure. The device is basically used to measure the temperature of food items that take a long time to cook. It tells you whether or not the temperature of food has reached high enough to kill the germs and bacteria. If the food is not cooked at a temperature that is sufficient to kill bacteria, it might not be a safe choice to consume it, as it may cause food poisoning. You can easily afford this small device and ensure better health for your family.
Do not keep frozen foods outside of the refrigerator for too long
Many times, after grocery shopping people leave their shopping bags in hot cars, or they keep them on kitchen shelves for a long time. Such carelessness can spoil your food products, especially the frozen ones. So as soon as you buy poultry, dairy foods, salad ingredients, meat and so on, make it a point to put them in the refrigerator. Also, make sure the temperature of your refrigerator is at or below 5ºC. You can also use a fridge thermometer to keep a check on your refrigerator’s temperature. When you are in a doubt that a particular food product is stale or not so safe for consumption, throw it out.
The above-mentioned food safety tips will not only ensure better health but will also help you in maintaining cleanliness and hygiene in your kitchen.
Making slight modifications in your lifestyle can go a long way in improving your health. It is not just what you eat that makes a difference, but also how it is served and cooked brings about a huge change.