Food Poisoning: Causes, Symptoms and Prevention
Bacteria and viruses are the most common cause of food poisoning. The various symptoms, high-risk foods and prevention methods for different types of bacteria or viruses are shown below.
|Name of Bacteria or Virus||Description||High-risk Foods||Main Symptoms||Incubation Period||Prevention|
|Salmonella||The bacteria live in the intestinal tracts of infected animals and humans. In extremely rare cases, eggs may be contaminated. It can be eliminated with heat.||Meat, poultry and eggs etc.||Fever
|Usually 12 to 48 hours||Thoroughly cook animal products.Eat food prompty after cooking.|
|Vibrio parahaemolyticus infection||Vibrio parahaemolyticus is found in seawater.The bacteria increases rapidly during summer in higher water temperatures.Does not spread in fresh water or colder waters.||Raw or undercooked fish or shellfish, etc.||Intense stomach cramps
|Usually 10 to 48 hours||Wash with fresh (i.e. non-salt) water.Thoroughly cook fish or shellfish.Do not leave raw fish in room temperature.|
|Pathogenic E. coli bacteria(e.g. Escherichia coli O157)||The bacteria live in the intestinal tracts of animals and humans. It is a particularly potent bacterium. It can be eliminated with heat.||Raw, uncooked meat etc.||Fever
|3 to 5 days||Wash hands before and after preparing food.Thoroughly cook animal products.Disinfect kitchenware and utensilsEat food prompty after cooking.|
|Staphylococcus aureus||A common bacterium that lives on the skin or in wounds.The toxin it produces can be eliminated by heating or drying.||Onigiri (rice balls), sandwiches, obento packed lunches and other handmade meals etc.||Nausea
|1 to 3 hours||Avoid touching or preparing food if your hand has an infected wound.Eat food prompty after cooking.|
|Campylobacter infection||The bacteria live in the intestinal tracts of animals. It is a particularly potent bacterium. It can be eliminated with heat.||Meat, poultry etc.||Diarrhoea
Stomach cramps, etc.
|2 to 7 days||Thoroughly cook animal products.Wash hands after touching or preparing food.|
|Clostridium perfringens||The bacteria live in water, soil and in the intestinal tracts of animals.It spreads in environments low in oxygen.||Curries, stews etc.||Stomach cramps
|6 to 18 hours||Food prepared in advance should be stored at low temperatures.Thoroughly reheat food before eating.|
|Norovirus||Infections are most common in winter. Highly infectious. The bacteria can be eliminated with heat.||Food contaminated with norovirus, clams, oysters etc.||Diarrhoea
|24 to 48 hours||Thoroughly cook food.Wash hands before and after preparing food or eating.Especially when experiencing diaheorra, caution is necessary in dealing with food.|
|Naturally occuring poisons||Poisonous puffer fish, shellfish, mushrooms etc.||Puffer fish, shellfish, mushrooms etc.||Symptoms vary according to the type of poisoning.Puffer fish poisoning may cause paralysis or death.||Puffer fish poisoning:From 20 minutes to 3 hours after eating||Only eat puffer fish prepared by a chef qualified to prepare puffer fish.Mushrooms or shellfish gathered (and not obtained at a market or store) must not be eaten carelessly.|
If you think you have food poisoning…
Do not take antidiaherreal or digestive medicine and seek medical attention immediately.
How to Wash Hands Correctly
Washing Hands is crucial in preventing infections.
It is important to wash your hands especially before cooking, eating and after going to the toilet.