Dirty kitchen towels can aid the growth of pathogens and cause food poisoning, according to a new research done by the University of Mauritius. The study also showed that factors such as family size, type of diet and multi-usage of towels, among other factors, impact the growth of pathogens on kitchen towels, potentially causing food poisoning.
“Our study demonstrates that the family composition and hygienic practices in the kitchen affect the microbial load of kitchen towels,” said Susheela D Biranjia-Hurdoyal, senior lecturer, Department of Health Sciences, University of Mauritius, and lead author on the study. “We also found that diet, type of use and moist kitchen towels could be very important in promoting the growth of potential pathogens responsible for food poisoning,” she said.
49% of the kitchen towels collected in the study had bacterial growth which increased in number with extended family, presence on children and increasing family size. The towels for multipurpose usage (wiping utensils, drying hands, holding hot utensils, wiping/cleaning surfaces) had a higher bacterial count than single-use towels and humid towels showed higher bacterial count than the dry ones.
Out of the 49 samples which were positive for bacterial growth, 36.7% grew coliforms, 36.7% Enterococcus spp, and 14.3% S. aureus. A total of 100 kitchen towels were collected after one month of use. The researchers cultured the bacteria and identified them by standard biochemical tests. They also determined the bacterial load on the towels.
S. aureus was isolated at a higher rate from families of lower socio-economic status and those with children. The risk of having coliforms (Escherichia coli) was higher from humid towels than the dried ones, from multipurpose towels than single-use ones and from families on non-vegetarian diets. Coliform and S. aureus were detected at significantly higher prevalence from families with non-vegetarian diets. Escherichia coli is a normal flora of human intestine and is released in large numbers in human faeces. The presence of Escherichia coli indicates possible faecal contamination and lack of hygiene practices. “The data indicated that unhygienic practices while handling non-vegetarian food could be common in the kitchen,” said Biranjia-Hurdoyal.
The presence of potential pathogens from the kitchen towels indicates that they could be responsible for cross-contamination in the kitchen and could lead to food poisoning. “Humid towels and multipurpose usage of kitchen towels should be discouraged. Bigger families with children and elderly members should be especially vigilant to hygiene in the kitchen,” she said. The study was presented at the meeting, ASM Microbe 2018.
How to Keep Stroke at Bay
Stroke can affect everyone regardless of their age and sex. You might think that you’re healthy one minute then the next you’ve been hit by this cardio problem. Although those who often smoke, drink, and eat unhealthy meals are highly likely to suffer from stroke, you can never be too sure unless you learn how to keep this disease at bay.
If you want to avoid triggering stroke, these tips can help you out.
Pay attention to your emotions. Depression is a silent killer and one that can increase your risk of stroke. When you feel depressed, your body won’t function properly thus putting you at risk of suffering from various health issues with stroke being on top. If you are aware of your feelings, you will be able to get help from your family and even professionals to address this issue immediately.
Exercise more. Exercise has always been recommended by doctors to those who want to stay healthy because keeping your heart pumping and your blood flowing prevent buildup of plaque in your arterial wall. This also promotes more oxygen being delivered to different parts of your body which can boost their functions.
Sleep. If you think that late nights are good for your health, you should think again. Sleep plays an important role in your health as it is at this moment of rest does your body regenerate itself. Without proper sleep, you’re putting yourself at risk of suffering from high blood pressure which can trigger stroke when you are not careful.
Drink in moderation. If you often go out with friends or party all night, you’re probably drinking several bottles of booze every night. Although you’ll look cool in the presence of your friends, you are not actually helping yourself in terms of health. Too much alcoholic beverage can wreak havoc in your liver which can increase your cholesterol level and putting you at risk of suffering from stroke. Following the recommendation of one glass of wine for women and two glasses for men should be beneficial to you rather than drinking several bottles of beer.
Use olive oil. Cooking with palm oil, canola oil, and the like can increase your risk of stroke. A better option would be to switch to olive oil when cooking as it has low melting point and it contains plenty of nutrients that your body needs to combat various diseases including stroke. Using olive oil regularly will reduce your risk of stroke up to 40%.
Keep an eye on your weight. Another tip to keeping stroke at bay is to learn how to manage your weight. Going beyond the weight suitable for your age, height, and sex will already put you at risk of suffering from various cardiovascular diseases like stroke, heart attack, and high blood pressure just to name a few. If you keep your weight down by eating healthy foods and exercising regularly, you will be able to successfully keep stroke at bay.
Eating junk food can raise risk of bipolar disorder, depression
Feeling depressed? It’s time to cut out the unhealthy junk food from your diet as it increases the risk of psychological disorders including bipolar disorder and depression, said researchers.
Junk food is not only harmful for metabolism but also increases the risk of psychological problems such as bipolar disorder and depression, irrespective of personal characteristics such as age, gender, education and marital status, according to the study, published in the International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition, indiatvnews.com wrote.
High-sugar consumption was found to be linked with bipolar disorder, while fried foods or processed grains were associated with depression.
“Perhaps the time has come for us to take a closer look at the role of diet in mental health because it could be that healthy diet choices contribute to mental health,” said lead author Jim E Banta, Associate Professor at Loma Linda University, California.
“More research is needed before we can answer definitively, but the evidence seems to be pointing in that direction,” Banta added.
The findings provide “additional evidence that public policy and clinical practice should more explicitly aim to improve diet quality among those struggling with mental health”.
It also pointed out that “dietary interventions for people with mental illness should especially target young adults, those with less than 12 years of education, and obese individuals.”
For the study, the team of researchers reviewed data from over 2,40,000 telephone surveys conducted between 2005 and 2015.
Drinking carbonated beverages during and after exercise can cause kidney injury’
After an intense workout session, it is common for people to drink either water or soft drinks. But according to the latest study, while drinking water is safe and causes no harm to the body, carbonated beverages may lead to kidney damage.
According to the study, published in the American Journal of Physiology-Regulatory, Integrative and Comparative Physiology, it has been found that drinking soda after exercise is a big No-No — “The purpose of this study was to test the hypothesis that consuming a soft drink (i.e., a high fructose, caffeinated beverage) during and following exercise in the heat elevates biomarkers of acute kidney injury (AKI) in humans.”
The researchers recruited twelve healthy adults who were made to drink 2 litres of an assigned beverage during 4 hours of exercise in the heat. While half of the people were given a popular soft drink, the other half were given water to drink. They also had to drink 1 litre of the same beverages after leaving the laboratory. Stage 1 AKI was detected at post-exercise in 75 per cent of the participants in the soft drink trial compared to 8 per cent in water drinking trial.
Furthermore, according to the findings, “urinary neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin (NGAL), a biomarker of AKI, was higher during an overnight collection period after the soft drink trial compared to water.”
The study further added, “Changes in serum uric acid from pre-exercise were greater in the soft drink trial than water at post-exercise. There were greater increases from pre-exercise in serum copeptin, a stable marker of vasopressin, at post-exercise in the soft drink trial than water. These findings indicate that consuming a soft drink during and following exercise in the heat induces AKI, likely via vasopressin mediated mechanisms.”