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Master the active vocabulary

sorely –болезненно, мучительно, тягостно, жёстко, чрезвычайно

vigorously –решительно, сильно, энергично

wrist –запястье

rinsing –полоскание

to ingest –глотать, проглатывать

thaw –оттепель, таяние, потепление

to thrive –благоденствовать; преуспевать; процветать; буйно, пышно расти

eyeballing –визуальный контроль

utensil –посуда, утварь, принадлежность

leftover –остатки, объедки; оставшийся, сохранившийся

shallow –мелкий, неглубокий; поверхностный, пустой.

1. One of the simplest measures that any person can take to prevent the spread of food borne illness is to properly wash his or her hands before preparing or eating any meal. Many people who believe they are adequately washing their hands are sorely mistaken. According to a study conducted by the American Society of Microbiology, 97% of females and 92% of males said they washed their hands, but those numbers turned out to be 75% of females and 58% of males upon observation. A proper hand-washing technique suggested by the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services includes using soap and warm water; washing vigorously for 10–20 seconds, making sure to reach all surfaces of the hands including the wrists, between the fingers, and under the finger nails; rinsing well; drying hands with a paper towel; and using a paper towel to turn off the water. It is certainly important to wash your hands before preparing a meal and eating, but hands should also be washed after using the restroom, coughing/sneezing, touching cuts or skin infections, handling raw meat, and touching pets or other animals. Almost half the cases of food borne illnesses could be prevented by better hand-washing by food handlers. In addition, hand sanitizer is a helpful follow-up to hand-washing, but it should never be used to replace this valuable technique.

2. Some foods should simply never be ingested in the first place because they have such a high risk of containing harmful bacteria that can make people ill. These foods include raw milk, unpasteurized dairy products, unpasteurized juices (such as fresh apple cider), raw meat, and raw cookie dough.

3. In cases of suspected food spoilage, food should never simply be tasted, smelled, or eye-balled in order to determine its safety. It is true that in some cases, the presence of mold or other growths may indicate that a food has reached its expiration date and should not be consumed. However, some foods may look and smell fine, but if they have been stored at room temperature for over 2 hours, microscopic bacteria may have been allowed to grow. The safe temperature for foods in refrigerators is between 2°C (35°F) and 7°C (45°F), and freezers should be kept at -18°C (0°F) or below.

4. It is not safe to let meats thaw on the counter all day, because this allows any germs present on the food to thrive. Safer alternatives to this practice include thawing the food under running water (21°C (70°F) or below) for less than 2 hours, placing the food in the refrigerator to thaw, or thawing the food in the microwave as part of the cooking process.

5. It is also important to make sure that raw meats are cooked to the appropriate internal temperature before they are consumed. Safe internal temperatures for various meats include 74°C (165°F) for poultry, 68°C (155°F) for ground meat, and 63°C (145°F) for fish and pork. It is not sufficient to judge the doneness of meat by its internal color. According to a study performed by the USDA, “25% of hamburgers with a brown internal color were not cooked to the proper temperature.” Instead of simply eyeballing the meat, it is essential to use a meat thermometer to judge the safety of consuming the food.

6. The cooking process is often the time that food borne pathogens are allowed to enter the food we eat because of the prevalence of cross contamination. Cross contamination occurs when a person handling raw meats, eggs, fish, or other foods containing harmful pathogens touches cooking utensils, cutting boards, or cooking surfaces and spreads the pathogens to ready-to-eat foods in the process. This mode of transmission can be interrupted by washing hands after handling raw foods, washing utensils and cutting boards that have come in contact with raw foods, and disinfecting counter surfaces frequently.

7. Leftovers are ideally stored in the refrigerator in shallow containers (2 inches tall or less) so that the cooling process can be accelerated and the buildup of harmful bacteria can be prevented. Storing foods in larger containers may keep foods warm and allow harmful bacteria to grow.

In 2003, the WHO and FAO published the Codex Alimentarius which serves as a guideline to food safety.

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