what causes e-coli

    what causes e-coli in vegetables or all foods

    0  Views: 439 Answers: 2 Posted: 8 years ago

    2 Answers

    By Mayo Clinic staff

    Among the many strains of E. coli, only a few trigger diarrhea. One group of E. coli — which includes O157:H7 — produces a powerful toxin that damages the lining of the small intestine, which can cause bloody diarrhea.

    You develop an E. coli infection when you accidentally ingest the bacteria. Potential sources of exposure include contaminated food or water, and person-to-person contact.

    Contaminated food

    * Ground beef. When cattle are slaughtered and processed, E. coli bacteria in their intestines can get on the meat. Ground beef combines meat from many different animals, increasing the risk of contamination. Contaminated ground beef often has bacteria spread throughout the mixture — not just on the surfaces (such as on a steak), where cooking is more likely to destroy bacteria.
    * Unpasteurized milk. E. coli bacteria on a cow's udder or on milking equipment can get into raw milk.
    * Fresh produce. Runoff from cattle farms can contaminate fields where fresh produce is grown. Vegetables such as spinach and lettuce are particularly vulnerable to this type of contamination.

    Contaminated water
    Human and animal feces may pollute ground and surface water, including streams, rivers, lakes and water used to irrigate crops. Drinking or inadvertently swallowing untreated water from lakes and streams can cause E. coli infection.

    Although public water systems use chlorine, ultraviolet light or ozone to kill E. coli, some outbreaks have been linked to contaminated municipal water supplies. Private wells are a greater cause for concern. Some people have been infected after swimming in pools or lakes contaminated with feces.

    Personal contact
    E. coli bacteria can easily travel from person to person, especially when infected adults and children don't wash their hands properly. Family members of young children with E. coli infection are especially likely to acquire it themselves.

    Restaurant workers who don't wash their hands after using the bathroom can transmit E. coli bacteria to food. Outbreaks have also occurred among children visiting petting zoos and in animal barns at county fairs.

    That a way Colleen, you got ALL the bases covered with that answer.

    A lot better then the answer by someone else that I deleted. I think it was, "bug in your poop". Not much by way of information with that, huh? <rolling eyes>
    colleen - that was a great answer. unfortunately, now i've developed a phobia ... "fear of eating"
    it's nothing new really. i had a hamburger last night and that was the first one in about six months.
    i stopped buying fresh vegetables and after reading i think i'll go back to frozen vegetables.

    Just make sure you wash your hands and thoroughly wash any of the above food you eat and cook all food properly.

    Top contributors in Biology category

    Answers: 78 / Questions: 0
    Karma: 4335
    country bumpkin
    Answers: 58 / Questions: 0
    Karma: 3945
    Answers: 89 / Questions: 0
    Karma: 3015
    Answers: 46 / Questions: 0
    Karma: 2520
    > Top contributors chart

    Unanswered Questions