Health officials in Iowa and Nebraska have finally gotten to the bottom of the “mysterious bug” that has sickened hundreds of people across 15 states. They determined the source as being “bagged lettuce” and the culprit is known as “Cycospora” – a pathogen transmitted by feces or feces-contaminated fresh produce and water (nasty!). This rare (thank goodness) parasite causes a miserable and lengthy gastrointestinal illness.
I couldn’t resist posting this definition of “Cyclospora” provided by the Mayo Clinic:
Cyclospora infection causes watery, and sometimes explosive, diarrhea. The one-celled parasite that causes cyclospora infection can enter your body when you ingest contaminated food or water. Fresh produce is the culprit in many cases of cyclospora infection.
Because diarrhea can be caused by many things, it can be difficult to diagnose cyclospora infection. A specialized test is required to identify the cyclospora parasite in stool samples. Treatment for cyclospora infection is antibiotics. Food safety precautions may help to prevent the disease
There is a whole lot wrong with this picture. First of all, prepackaged convenience foods are never a good idea…green or not. Let this be a reminder for you to buy fresh and local whenever possible.
Second, it isn’t wise to judge the book by its cover. Just because this lettuce is packaged in a fresh, clean bag, never assume that it is either.
Lastly, remember it is always better to be safe than sorry. Never trust the source of your food so much that you neglect to adequately clean it! Just ask the hundreds of victims that are probably still hugging the toilet because of contaminated lettuce. They are all now part of the “wish I had” club.
If I were you, I would get in the habit of rinsing ALL of my fruits and veggies with 2.5 pH water. There isn’t a “bug” in the world that can survive that!
CHANGING THE WAY THE WORLD LOOKS AT WATER…
ONE DROP AT A TIME!