Why washing raw chicken before cooking can be dangerous to your health

Washing chickens inside the kitchen risks spreading deadly bacteria.

Chicken in general contains Salmonella and Campylobacter that cause serious illness.

Everyone washes the chicken well before cooking and rinses the meat with water to remove blood and fat from the meat. But did you know that washing chicken before cooking can be fatal? There has been a report in The Conversation stating that chicken should never be washed before cooking.

Previously, when chickens were bought in the market, traces of feathers, slime or dirt would be seen on them, and they needed to be washed. But according to a new study, today's birds come pre-washed and ready to cook when we buy them. But still, some people seem to think that one should wash the chicken again to remove dangerous microorganisms from the raw meat.

Recent research suggests that while chicken contains harmful microorganisms, washing it before cooking does not eliminate them. Chicken in general contains Salmonella and Campylobacter. These can cause very serious illness, with infections causing symptoms such as fever, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and possibly even sepsis (blood infection). Children, older people, pregnant women, and those with other health conditions or weak immune systems are at greater risk of contracting illness from these bacteria.

Salmonella and Campylobacter infections can cause hospitalizations and deaths even in healthy people. However, washing chicken before cooking does not eliminate all the germs it contains. It only removes bacteria from the surface. This procedure greatly increases the risk of infection from raw chicken, as it could allow bacteria cleaned from the chicken skin to travel throughout the kitchen.

Safe handling of raw chicken

Raw poultry often arrives in packaging or containers infected with bacteria. After opening the container and removing the chicken, discard the container immediately and place it in a clean plastic bag to prevent spills on the kitchen floor.

Then, place the raw bird on a sanitized cutting board so you can prepare it.

Since washing creates an unnecessary risk, if there is dirt or slime on the surface of the chicken, simply wipe it with a paper towel and discard immediately.

After preparing the chicken, you should immediately wash your hands with soap and warm water.

Then you have to wash the cutting board and utensils well.

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