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HHS HealthBeat (January 3, 2014)

Microwaving bacteria

From the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, I’m Ira Dreyfuss with HHS HealthBeat.

Nuking doesn’t necessarily make food safe to eat. Microwaving is like other forms of cooking – if the internal food temperature is not hot enough for long enough, bacteria that can cause foodborne illness don’t die. At the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, researcher Leslie Hausman talks about foods with at least some raw ingredients – which are different than foods that were fully cooked when you bought them:

“To make sure these products are safe to eat, it’s important you carefully read and follow the cooking directions printed on the packaging. This includes both microwaving and allowing the product to sit for the recommended period of time prior to eating.”

An article on an outbreak of salmonella illness traced to undercooked frozen food is in CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

Learn more at healthfinder.gov.

HHS HealthBeat is a production of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. I’m Ira Dreyfuss.

Last revised: January 3, 2014