As college students, we scramble to set aside time to even eat, so much so that sometimes we don’t even think about how we are preparing or storing our foods. Simple tasks such as separating frozen meats in your freezer from other products could make the difference in your health and prevent you from getting sick or getting food poisoning. Here are some other things to keep in mind to help maintain your health:
- Shop at grocery stores that are clean and have high product turnover. The more popular a store is, the more they have to restock their shelves with fresh products. Other than just looking at how many people go to a certain store, also look at expiration dates to see how often they change out their items.
- Don’t buy more perishables than you can use. I’ve made this mistake more times than I can remember. You see a sale on produce, so you stock up thinking you’ll make tons of nutritious meals. You end up not having time and realizing the items are starting to go bad but don’t want to throw it out so you use them anyways. You can also keep perishables in the refrigerator to make them last longer.
- Wash all produce BEFORE you pick up a knife. If the fruit or vegetable’s surface has infectious organisms, like bacteria or pesticides, they can actually spread to the fruit when you cut inside.
- If you can’t avoid washing your meat in the sink, at least bleach it afterwards. This will help kill any bacteria that you washed off the meat. This can prevent cross-contamination with other food.
- Wash your kitchen sponges in the dishwasher. Sponges tend to harbor a lot of bacteria. Throwing them in the dishwasher when you wash your dishes helps sanitize them. If you don’t have a dishwasher, you can also throw your sponge in the microwave to kill the bacteria in a similar way.
- Don’t use your dish sponges to wipe the floors or counters. You don’t want to pick up other dirt and bacteria from around the house. Getting another sponge could make a huge difference to your health.
Being healthy is not as time-consuming as you may think. It takes a lot less time to be just a bit more cautious than it would if you acquire food poisoning and have to stay house-bound, unable to go to class, or out with friends. Little things make the biggest difference, and after a couple of weeks, they’ll become habits!
Article by Rana Mehdizadeh
Feature Image Source: HGTV