FoodRising concerns over common chicken preparation practices that risk public health

Rising concerns over common chicken preparation practices that risk public health

Images source: © Adobe Stock | bzyxx
2:44 PM EST, February 13, 2024

Because it's lean, delicious, and easy to cook, chicken is a popular choice. It can be used in a multitude of dishes, showcasing its incredible versatility and satisfying taste each time. Regrettably, many of us commit errors in meat preparation that could have harmful consequences to our health.

Are you making this serious chicken preparation mistake?

The average American eats about 66 lbs of chicken annually — and it's easy to see why. Chicken is both a great source of easily digestible protein and potassium and low in fat. Athletes and those on a low-calorie diet often opt for chicken, as roughly 100g of chicken (about 3.5 ounces) contains just about 138 kcal. Please note that the preparation method does influence its caloric contents. For instance, fried chicken has more calories than chicken that has been baked or boiled.

There's a multitude of ways to prepare meat without needing extensive preparation. Just season it lightly and within minutes, you have a delicious and nutritious dinner ready to serve. Unfortunately, many of us aren't aware that one common practice during meat preparation can risk food poisoning.

This refers to washing chicken before cooking. Meat is a fertile ground for bacteria, and water only hastens their bacteria's growth. Additionally, washing can result in water droplets splashing around the sink and on other kitchen tools, potentially leading to cross-contamination.

Another common mistake is leaving the meat out on the countertop for several hours before cooking. Raw meat contains numerous harmful bacteria that can multiply rapidly in warm air. Therefore, store raw meat in the fridge and cook it immediately after removing it.

Marinating chicken and potential health risks

Marinated chicken boasts an impressive taste. The chicken is kept in foil filled with a flavorful marinade. After grilling or baking, the chicken turns out to be juicy and bursting with flavors. However, this practice is not entirely risk-free as long marinating periods can foster the growth of dangerous germs. To avoid this, consider using disposable bags and cooking the meat no later than two hours post-marination.

When discussing bacteria, it's important to note kitchen hygiene. It's a common practice to clean cutting boards and knives used for preparing raw meat with boiling water. Unfortunately, this rule is often neglected, potentially leading to severe poisoning.

Furthermore, the cutting board used for meat should never come into contact with other foods — even post-scalding. Ensure to use at least two different cutting boards. Always wash your hands during meal preparation, especially after touching raw meat. In this way, you can prevent bacteria from spreading across your kitchen and avoid potential infections caused by Salmonella, Listeria, or E.Coli.

Related content