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Health Tip: Don't Fall for Food Safety Myths

(HealthDay News) -- Believing a myth about food safety can leave you with a nasty case of food poisoning.

Foodsafety.gov sets the record straight:

  • Food poisoning actually is a serious illness and could cause long-term complications, even death.
  • It's never safe to thaw food on the counter, as bacteria can grow rapidly at room temperature.
  • Acidic marinades will not kill bacteria.
  • Cleaning kitchen surfaces with a moderate bleach solution (1 teaspoon of bleach per quart of water) will kill bacteria. A stronger solution is not needed.
  • All fruits and vegetables, even those to be peeled, should be thoroughly rinsed with water, never soap.
  • Meat, poultry and seafood should never be rinsed, as this can cause bacteria to splash onto kitchen surfaces.
  • When cooking instructions call for letting microwaved food stand for a few minutes, it's not to avoid burning, but to allow food to finish cooking.
  • Food can spoil before it smells bad.
  • Cooked food needs to be maintained at a warm temperature to prevent bacterial growth.
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