As the old saying goes, you can’t take Avocado out from an American’s life. That is true. In fact, USA ranks second in the countries with highest avocado consumption, just falling short of its neighbour, Mexico.
While the fruit may offer several health benefits, studies have suggested something else. The new findings call to look deep into this issue.
According to a number of food tests done, avocados are found to be contaminated with harmful bacteria. This contamination can become a contributor towards health complications that you might not want to inflict yourself with.
So, be careful before stocking your kitchen shelf with your favourite food item.
Yet, with just a few easy steps you can overcome the problem to a great extent. They will be discussed later in this article.
Contamination of Avocados
The Food and Drug Administration Authority (FDA) inspects over thousands of food products on regular basis. Among the products are the ones that are imported from other countries and consumed locally.
The findings that were documented, it was revealed that about 40% of the total Avocado import had traces of bacterial contamination.
For now, inspectors are unsure why that is really the case. They are investigating the cause thoroughly yet believe the contamination results from unhygienic conditions in the exporting country.
FDA found the bacterium monocytogenes to be present on the skin of Avocados. About 1-2% of the imports were also tested positive for Listeria. This bacterium is responsible for causing the condition known as Listeriosis which primarily affects pregnant women. The side effects may be many and can lead to conditions like miscarriages, cognitive impairment and convulsions.
Some Avocados also showed the presence of Salmonella yet it was present on just a few of the samples. FDA team has warned the consumers about this alarming situation. They have put forward some guideline to consider before eating the fruit.
Keeping yourself safe
The above discussion should tell you to be utterly careful when deciding to eat avocado. Yet just with few easy-to-carry-out procedures, you can keep you and your family safe from any resulting illness(es).
The inspection team recommends scrubbing the outer skin thoroughly with either a brush or a clean towel. You can also use other hard skin fruits like melons to rub against avocado.
The bacteria may also be killed using bleach. All you have to do is pour a half tablespoon of bleach in a tub of water. Allow the solution to mix properly before inserting the avocados inside the tub. This should denature the bacterium microbes preventing contamination.
Consumers should also avoid cross-contamination of food items. That is to say, keeping the fruits and vegetables separately. It is highly likely that pathogens present on any poultry item may as well transfer to the avocado. Therefore try keeping both of the products at a considerable distance to each other. Also, make use of separate utensils when eating.
Lastly, keep the avocados refrigerated at all times. Keeping the fruit outside can make it vulnerable to further bacteria attack.