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How to properly process products so as not to become infected with coronavirus

There is no evidence or documented case of COVID-19 suggesting that the virus can be transmitted through food. But experts are inclined to believe that there is a chance of getting sick if you take an item that someone infected was coughing for. Writes about this USA Today.

Photo: Shutterstock

And although most people take the right action, one wrong step can increase the risk of infection.

In Pennsylvania, a woman walked through a grocery store coughing for food. Felicia Gulet-Miller, a professor of microbiology at the University of Florida on the Gulf of Mexico, said food, including fresh foods, can spread the disease.

“If the product was infected by a sick person and you touched this product and then your face, then there is a chance of getting infected,” Gulet-Miller said, noting that this is another reason not to touch your face in public places and wash them whenever they touch objects touched by other people.

Don Schaffner, a professor of food science at Rutgers University in New Jersey, said that information and recommendations are constantly changing, but the virus does not like to be outside the body. In a couple of days, the virus will die on a hypothetical apple that a person sneezed on with COVID-19.

“We think it’s impossible to get coronavirus from an apple, but we don’t know for sure,” says Schaffner.

Soap and detergent will not kill COVID-19

Do not bleach vegetables and do not use chlorine on fruits. No disinfectant wipes or isopropyl alcohol.

“They are unsafe for human consumption,” recalls Gulet-Miller.

And if you eat a lot of soap, it can be toxic, Schaffner warns.

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“Soaps and detergents are for washing hands or washing dishes, but not for washing food,” he said. “If you eat them, it will upset your stomach.”

As for chlorine, its improper use is also fraught with dangers.

“Using chlorine in this way is worse than the risk of regular foodborne pathogens,” says Francisco Dies-Gonzalez, director of the Center for Food Safety at the University of Georgia.

How to protect yourself

The main recommendation that experts give, along with the leadership of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), is to rinse the products under running water before using them.

The CDC also emphasized the importance of thoroughly washing your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds before preparing or eating food.

“The recommendation is still to soak the products in water or place them under running water to wash away any potential contaminants,” Diez-González said.

Detergents remove about 90% of all impurities, but not everyone finds time to rinse before eating.

“Probably, many people didn’t wash their products before this outbreak,” suggested Diez-González, who estimated that before the pandemic, less than 20% washed their hands before eating.

Gulet-Miller also recommends washing fruits, say the same bananas.

“Even if the fetus has a peel, you must first wash it, because touching it will contaminate your hands, and then you can infect yourself,” Gulet-Miller explains.

Do not share food

Felicia Wu, a professor of food and nutrition science at the University of Michigan, said that sharing foods and drinks of any kind should be prohibited.

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“It is very important, even in families, to ensure that you don’t share food that someone has already bitten or drank,” Wu insists, noting that the saliva of the infected person may contain the virus.

“That's why getting infected with this virus and coughing or sneezing near you increases your risk of getting infected,” Wu summed up.

Schaffner also believes that if a patient appears in your home, he “should eat separately”.

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