Seniors are being urged to be careful when preparing eggs after a recent Queensland salmonella outbreak was associated with food prepared using eggs that were not cooked long enough.
Queensland Health says the symptoms of salmonella food poisoning include headache, fever, stomach cramps, diarrhoea, nausea and vomiting, which can last days or weeks.
Older people are at greater risk for severe illness.
Tips to avoid illness include:
- Never use cracked or dirty eggs when preparing food, as cracks can allow salmonella bacteria on the shell to grow inside the egg.
- Don't wash eggs, as this makes it easier for bacteria from dirt or feathers on the shell to get inside.
- Store eggs in the fridge to minimise the risk of bacteria growing.
- Store eggs in their original carton that is labelled with a 'best before' date.
- For picnics and barbecues, pack foods containing raw eggs in an insulated cooler with enough ice or freezer bricks to keep them cold.
- Only make food containing raw eggs on the day you plan to eat it.
- Never leave foods containing raw egg out of the fridge for more than two hours.
- Throw out cartons containing cracked eggs to avoid cross-contamination.
- Don't use the shell to separate egg white from the yolk, as bacteria on the shell can be transferred in this way.
- Clean kitchen utensils and equipment with hot, soapy water after handling egg and egg products.
- You should always wash and dry your hands before and after handling eggs.
- If you develop symptoms of salmonella, call your local doctor or nearest public health clinic.