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Food Poisoning and Your Bub

Posted by Karen Faulkner on
baby food, food poisoning, gastroenteritis, diarrhoea, poop, rice
This topic presented itself in a chance conversation with a mum this week and I felt it needed a bit more looking at. I had a mum come in to see me and a chance remark from her doctor had uncovered the potential cause of her baby's gastroenteritis. It got me thinking. And so a blog on food poisoning and how to prevent it was born. What I uncovered was she was reheating rice over several days. Most of us know to be really careful with fish and chicken but rice is a biggie for causing food poisoning.

Matthew Fort, The Guardian 2009 shares his advice on this topic (
"A high number of food poisoning cases are indeed caused by reheated rice. Or perhaps I should say inadequately heated. It's not actually the reheating that's the problem - it's the way the rice has been stored before reheating. Uncooked rice can contain spores of Bacillus cereus, a bacteria that can cause food poisoning. Unless the rice is cooked properly, the spores can survive, and if you then leave it standing at room temperature for any length of time, the spores can germinate into bacteria. These will then multiply and may produce toxins that cause all manner of nasty side-effects. Reheating the rice won't get rid of these toxins, so the longer cooked rice is left at room temperature, the more likely it is that bacteria, or the toxins they produce, could stop the rice being safe to eat. Rice is best served when it has just been cooked, anyway, but if that's not possible, cool it as soon as you can (within an hour) and keep in the fridge for no more than a day. As when reheating any food, check it's steaming hot all the way through, and don't reheat more than once."

So hopefully I've got you thinking. Only make up as much rice as you need and reduce the risk of gastro.

If that doctor hadn't had that chance conversation we might have had a different outcome. Most people don't know how deadly rice can be. Cooked properly and eaten straight away it's a great food but kept and reheated it can be a different matter.

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