Foodborne illnesses kill thousands a year, study finds

Jan 27, 2011

It's important to make sure all food is cooked thoroughly

Ordering a steak cooked rare could prove to dangerous. Beef that is not thoroughly heated can carry dangerous foodborne diseases.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says every year 3,000 people die from a foodborne illness.

Food and Drug Administration commissioner Margaret Hamburg says no one should die from eating.

"Foodborne illnesses and deaths are preventable, and as such, are unacceptable," says Hamburg. "We must, and can, do better by intensifying our efforts to implement measures that are prevention-oriented and science-based."

One way people can decrease their chances of getting sick from food is ensuring all meat is thoroughly cooked. Chicken or beef that is pink has not been heated long enough to kill germs and bacteria. When cooking at home, all areas that come in contact with uncooked meat should be sanitized.

While 3,000 deaths from fooborne illnesses may seem small in comparison to the 48 million people that get sick, the chance of dying still exists. Taking proper precautions and ensuring one has adequate life insurance coverage should be done.  

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