Thanksgiving cooking safety - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

Thanksgiving cooking safety

According to the Centers for Disease Control, one in six Americans are affected by food borne illnesses every year. Statistics show that almost 128,000 are hospitalized, and 3,000 people will die. Simply from undercooked, improperly refrigerated, or unsafe preparation of meals.

Food safety is especially important as you prepare the Thanksgiving turkey and all the trimmings for friends and family. Following a few simple guidelines can help you cook a safe holiday meal that everyone will enjoy.

  • Thawing turkeys must be kept at a safe temperature. Bacteria multiply rapidly between 40 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit. Remember there are three safe ways to thaw food: in the refrigerator, in cold water and in a microwave.
  • To prevent the spread of bacteria, always wash your hands, utensils and work surfaces after working with raw poultry. For optimal safety, cook stuffing outside of the turkey in a casserole dish.
  • When going to the fridge to nibble on leftover favorites, heat them thoroughly. Also keep in mind that refrigerated leftovers should be eaten within four days or to reduce the risk of food poisoning. If you don't anticipate eating leftovers within four days, freeze them immediately.

For more information about how to protect yourself from food borne illness this holiday season, visit the CDC's website at:

From the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, I'm Dr. Tedd Mitchell, and this is the President's Prescription.

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