E Coli Bacteria Essay Research Paper For

E Coli Bacteria Essay, Research Paper

For those who follow the rules of good nutrition by eating healthy foods, the

rewards can be substantial. But it’s also important that you clean and cook your

food properly. Because if you don’t, certain microorganisms that hitchhike into

your stomach can make you feel miserable. E. coli is a bacteria that normally

live in the intestines of humans and animals. Although, most strains of this

bacteria are harmless, several are known to produce toxins that can cause

diarrhea. One particular E. coli strain can cause severe diarrhea and kidney

damage E. coli made a notorious appearance at a fast-food restaurant chain about

three years ago, sickening hundreds and killing four children who ate

undercooked hamburgers. Experts estimate that E. coli causes as many as 20,000

infections and 250 deaths per year. The incidence of food-borne illness is

staggering. Physicians in the United States deal with 8.2 million cases

annually, a quarter of a million of which require hospitalization. The bacteria

is acquired by eating food containing the bacteria. The bacteria live in the

intestines of some healthy cattle, and contamination of the meat may occur in

the slaughtering process. Eating meat that is rare or inadequately cooked is the

most common way of getting the infection. Person-to-person transmission can

occur if infected people do not wash their hands after using the toilet. People

infected by E. coli can develop a range of symptoms. Some infected people may

have mild diarrhea or no symptoms at all. Most identified cases develop severe

diarrhea and abdominal cramps. Blood is often seen in the stool. Usually little

or no fever is present. Most people recover without antibiotics or other

specific treatment in five to 10 days. The best course of action is to drink

plenty of liquids, rest, and avoid anti-diarrheal medication, which may actually

retard your ability to eliminate the bacteria. In children under five years of

age, the infection can cause a complication called hemolytic uremic syndrome.

This is a serious disease in which red blood cells are destroyed and the kidneys

fail. Blood clotting factors as well as kidney dialysis may be necessary. Most

people recover completely, but it can be fatal. The best way to avoid illness

from beef at home is to cook the meat to an internal temperature of 160 degrees

Fahrenheit, which will kill the organism. Though it may put a crimp in your

culinary style when you eat out, it’s probably advisable to go for

"rare" and "medium rare." If your steak or burger still

looks too pink inside, send it back to the grill. Drink only pasteurized milk

and milk products. Make sure infected people, especially children, wash their

hands carefully with soap after using the toilet to reduce the risk of spreading

the disease.


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