Tips For Safe Dining
3 Key Rules To Follow When Eating At Restaurants
Getting food poisoning is no fun, but there are some ways to avoid it. Bill Marler is an attorney who specializes in foodborne illness cases, and has spent nearly three decades representing people who have experienced illnesses caused by ingesting E. coli, salmonella, and listeria, among other pathogens. He says in general, it’s best to eat at home to minimize your risk of consuming undercooked or contaminated food. He says, “A lot of it has to do with being able to control your own environment: washing fruits and vegetables thoroughly, cooking the ones that need to be cooked.” He adds that the majority of outbreaks he’s litigated on in recent decades stemmed from foods that were technically prewashed. He explains, “Even in the best restaurants, it’s usually pretty packaged salads that they use. They may or may not cut them up themselves and wash them themselves.” He says for this reason, he usually orders cooked vegetables to play it safe in a restaurant. Also, he is sure to order his meat well done when dining out, as raw meat can contain bacteria such as salmonella or campylobacter—the most common culprits of food poisoning. He also says you should avoid ordering raw seafood like oysters or sashimi in restaurants. Since they’re not cooked they have no defense against harmful viruses and bacteria. He adds he’s seen an uptick in foodborne illnesses linked to shellfish in the past decade, in part due to warming waters.