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Pregnancy & Parenting



Food Safety: Keep Your Kids Safe From Food Poisoning

Food storage, preparation and hygiene tips for moms.
The home environment can sometimes be a bit of a minefield for a child. In addition to common household accidents, one of the most common reasons for children's hospitalisation is usually parents' negligence of food safety. Because young children have a much weaker immune system compared to adults, parents must be especially vigilant when handling your child's food.

If you buy frozen foods or ingredients, refrigerate them as soon as you get home in order to prevent bacterial growth. These foods should also be consumed sooner rather than later because refrigerating them for a long time reduces the freshness. Putting a stop to bacterial growth is the key to preventing food poisoning!

As for the cleaning process, it really varies according to the type of food. For example, vegetables must be washed with water before cooking, and the stem area should be chopped off because pesticides tend to accumulate there. If possible, soak the vegetables in salt water for a while before cooking. As for fruits, it is actually better to peel away a small amount of flesh along with the outer skin because some pesticides might have seeped through.

When cleaning fish, make sure the slippery and bloody parts are all cleaned thoroughly. Saltwater fish can be cleaned using salt water. As for meats, it is safer to remove the fats because most residual feed and pesticides accumulate there. You can also cut the meat into small pieces and boil them for about half a minute before cooking. This will help remove residual drugs in the meat.

Since the purpose of cleaning is to kill bacteria and germs, it defeats the purpose if the handler does not maintain personal hygiene. Therefore, parents must always wash your hands before cooking, and remove accessories such as rings or watches so that bacteria collected in the small gaps do not contaminate the food. Also remember to wash your hands after changing the diapers for your little one before coming into contact with food again.

When it comes to the actual cooking procedure, ensure all foods are cooked thoroughly. Generally speaking, heating foods up to 75C for more than a minute is adequate to eliminate most bacteria. When heating up soup, make sure it's reboiled before serving it to your little one.

Credit: Growing Up Together -- brought to you by


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