Eating and drinking
- Always wash hands after going to the toilet, before handling food and before eating
- Avoid cross contamination between uncooked and cooked foods
- Dishcloths should be avoided but if used washed thoroughly or wrung out in disinfectant after use
- Disposable paper towels are preferable to cloth tea towels
- Take similar precautions with face cloths and towels
- Meat eaten out, e.g. grills and roasts, should be freshly and thoroughly cooked. Avoid “rare” cooked meats especially pork
- Avoid “street food”. Ask yourself about the vendor’s hygiene facilities.
- When travelling to developing countries you should avoid raw food other than fruits or vegetable that you peel yourself, this includes salads.
Take advice from the local health department before using a local piped supply for drinking, food preparation, cleaning your teeth, ice in drinks, or dish washing (unless boiled). Water from rivers or streams should never be used for any of these purposes.
Always ensure that it is from a reputable supplier and that the security seal is intact.
Foods to be avoided unless safety is assured:
⦁ Ice cream.
⦁ Fermented milk unless pasteurised, sterilised, ultra heat treated or boiled.
⦁ Soft and semi-hard cheese particularly goat’s milk cheese. If prepared from pasteurised or boiled milk will be safe. In the Middle and Far East, cheese is usually prepared from raw or inadequately heated milk and is therefore not safe.
⦁ Cooked or semi-preserved cold meats, sausages and meat sandwiches (with the exception of those products known to have high salt content) these may be subject to much handling and poor storage in warm countries.
⦁ Be wary of ready-to-eat snacks from street vendors and market stalls.
⦁ Meatballs or curried foods may be cooked ahead of requirement and contaminated prior to consumption.
⦁ Shellfish and other sea foods particularly bivalves such as cockles and mussels. Uncooked shellfish such as oysters are hazardous
unless properly purified. Some fish contain toxins in their flesh.
⦁ Bar snacks particularly prawns and sea foods.
⦁ Unless freshly cooked in a reputable shop, avoid cooked chickens, kebabs, hamburgers, hot dogs etc.
⦁ Salads and dessert fruits unless carefully washed in water containing hypochlorite. Peel all fruit including tomatoes.
⦁ Excess alcohol as it may aggravate heat exhaustion.
⦁ Food exposed to flies and insects.
⦁ Street food cooked on the roadside. Where do they wash their hands after going to the toilet?
⦁ Any food stuff where others may have handled it, e.g. bar top peanuts