Listeria 101: Symptoms, Origin, and Prevention

listeria 101

Food poisoning is one of the biggest issues that plagues the food handler industry. Some of the most common food poisoning cases come from cross contamination and improper storage of poultry and other similarly delicate products.

While salmonella is a contaminate that many are aware of, another food poisoning situation to keep on one’s radar is listeria, or listeriosis. This is a food poisoning that is the direct result of eating foods that have been contaminated with the L. monocytogenes bacteria. Much like other types of food poisoning, listeria is very serious and is something that all food handlers in Texas need to know about.

At Certified On The Fly, giving people the opportunity to learn how to handle food properly is our business, so here are some of our top facts about listeriosis and how it can be living in your improperly stored frozen foods.

What are the Symptoms of Listeriosis?

Listeriosis is an illness that is prevalent among pregnant women, newborns, adults with weaker immune systems, and the elderly.

The symptoms of listeriosis include:

  • Muscle Aches
  • Fever

Sometimes there can be symptoms of nausea and diarrhea as well. If the disease spreads to the nervous system, even more serious symptoms can pop up that can range between a headache to convulsions.

In order to know if you are suffering from listeria, you need to visit a physician and be properly diagnosed. This can be done through a blood or spinal fluid test.

How is Listeriosis Caused?

The bacteria that causes listeria is commonly found in soil and water. This explains why vegetables can easily become contaminated. If they are grown in soil that is contaminated, then they can in fact carry the bacteria.

This can also be spread to animals carrying the bacteria and contaminating meat and dairy products, even after processing.

Some products that can cause listeriosis after processing include:

  • Raw Milks
  • Soft Cheeses
  • Cold Cuts

Can Listeriosis Be Prevented?

While listeria is a very serious problem in the food handler industry, there are several ways to prevent this problem, and most of them are all about how you handle and store your susceptible products.

Always keep raw meats and poultry separate from, and below, other food items.

Also remember to prepare your foods to a safe temperature and determine the doneness of meats with a clean meat thermometer. Listeria, like other forms of food poisoning, is easily avoided if you take the right steps to become certified and knowledgeable about food safety.

Know the Food Dangers Involved with Listeria by Becoming Texas Food Handler Certified!

If you’re looking for a successful career in food service, then you need a Texas Food Handlers certification. With Certified On The Fly, becoming properly certified is painless and can be done online. Enroll today to find out how our online, test-free course can have you certified fast.

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