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12 Bad Kitchen Habits That Could Affect Your Health If Not Stopped

Image credit: delish.com

Many of the things we do in the kitchen come with different consequences. Some have positive effects whereas some come with negative ones. 

We often think those small bad habits in the kitchen are no big deal. But, it’s those little things that can cause food contamination, food poisoning, and spread of infection.

In this article, I will be sharing with you, some of these unhealthy habits that could impact your health negatively.

1) Tasting food to check freshness

Image credit: wikihow.com

Using smell or sight to check if a food is good is usually enough. However, some people go the extra length to give it a taste. If the food isn’t good, then you could be ingesting harmful microorganisms which can make you sick.

2) Washing chicken and other raw meatsImage credit: delish.com

You may think you’re decreasing bacteria on meat by rinsing it before cooking. However, rinsing raw beef, chicken or turkey, will splash bacteria all over your kitchen, sink, cloths and utensils, and contaminate everything. It’s best never to rinse meat. Instead, cook them to the proper minimum temperature to ensure that any harmful bacteria are destroyed.

3) Reusing the same plate

Any plate or utensil that has contact with anything other than water, should be washed after use. This will minimize the chances for pathogens to grow and make you sick.

4) Using only one chopping boardImage credit: dailymail.com

Using the same chopping board for cutting raw meat, chicken or fish, and slicing fresh fruits or vegetables can increase the chance of you transferring disease-causing microorganisms from the raw meats to the fresh produce. You can separate chopping boards, or wash your chopping board with hot water and soap in-between different usage for raw meat and fruit or vegetables.

5) Using contaminated spongesImage credit: timesofindia.com

The cleanliness of sponges is often overlooked by most people. Sponges can act as a vehicle for transferring bacteria from one surface to the other, which is why you should change your sponges regularly, so they don’t pick up bacteria and spread it all around your kitchen.

6) Leaving leftovers outImage credit: dailymeal.com

Saving your leftovers for later is a great habit that can save you time, money and food wastage. However, when food sits out at room temperature for over 2 hours, illness-causing bacteria can grow rapidly and the food will no longer be safe to eat and should be disposed of. So, try to put leftovers in the fridge as soon as they’re cool to avoid this.

7) Cooking over a high flame

We usually think that cooking on high flame will reduce the cooking time. However, this habit can make a lot of flavours vanish from our food and may also burn delicate ingredients. So, the proper way to cook tasty food is to stick to low or medium flame settings.

8) Reusing unwashed grocery bags

Reusing polythene and nylon bags used to purchase raw foods, including beef, chicken and eggs, without washing them is unhealthy. This is because those raw food items usually leave potentially harmful bacteria inside the polythene and nylon bags, which can be transferred to produce if the same bag is reused without being cleaned.

9) Using old and expired spices and seasoningImage credit: solocook.com

We all have an array of spices and seasoning that don’t always see the light of day, which means when they do come out, they’re not always in good condition. If you notice that the spice you want to use for cooking has a solid lump, kindly throw it out and use fresh spices and seasoning.

10) Licking the spoon you're using to cookImage credit: delish.com

It might be okay if you're just cooking for yourself. But if you're cooking for others, licking the spoon while cooking is simply unhygienic. The same goes for dipping your fingers in to taste food. If you want to try the food you're cooking, simply use a teaspoon, and wash it as soon as it's been in your mouth.

11) Picking up food items from the floorImage credit: quora.com

Most people feel it is okay to pick dropped food items from the floor, as long as you do it quickly. This may not be true at times because you don’t know how dirty the floor could be. No matter how fast you are, you will surely pick some bacteria with your dropped food. So, it is better to dispose the food item after it has made contact with the floor.

12) Not wiping surfaces after cooking or washing utensils after mealImage credit: timesofindia.com

It's important to keep kitchen surfaces, knives, spoons, forks, plates, and other utensils clean to help stop bacteria spreading to food. It's especially important to wash them thoroughly after using them with raw food, because they could spread bacteria to other food.

Hope you learnt one or two things from this article? You can leave a comment, share with others, and also follow up for more.

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