Food Poisoning and Prevention
Food poisoning is caused by the ingestion of food or drink, contaminated with bac-teria or toxins. The term ‘food borne dis-ease’ is defined as a disease usually either infectious or toxic in nature, caused by agents that enter the body through the ingestion of food.
Food poisoning may be of two types
a. Non- bacterial: Caused by chemicals such as arsenic, certain plant and sea foods. Lathyrism and endemic ascitis are some diseases caused due to toxins in foods. In recent years there has been a growing concern about contamina-tion of food by chemicals (eg) fertiliz-ers and pesticides.
b. Bacterial: Caused by the ingestion of food contaminated by living bacteria or other toxins.
Certain bacteria present in food produce toxins that are injurious to health. The four types of food poisoning are:
I. Salmonella food poisoning
II. Staphylococcal poisoning
IV. Clostridium perfringens food poisoning
Table 8.1 shows the major food poisoning of bacterial origin.