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FAQ Frequently asked questions
What is food-borne illness?
Food-borne illnesses are illnesses that can be contracted by eating contaminated food or drinking contaminated water.
What are the symptoms of food-borne illness?
The signs and symptoms of food-borne diseases can vary according to the disease in question. They typically (though not always) involve the digestive system and can include: diarrhea (usually explosive, urgent and watery) four to five (or more) …
What causes food-borne illnesses?
Microorganisms of all types can be found on and in food. Some of them can cause illness.
Who gets food-borne illnesses?
Anyone can get ill by eating contaminated food. The risk increases for children and older people, people with weak immune systems, and for travelers who may be particularly susceptible to foreign illnesses.
Will food-borne illness clear on its own?
Most cases of food-borne illness resolve themselves - although you are likely to have a few miserable days. Bed rest, drinking plenty of fluids and avoiding infecting others are the most common measures you can take. In more severe cases of …
How is food-borne illness spread?
Most types of food-borne illnesses spread via the oral-fecal route, meaning that infected human waste contaminates food in poor hygiene conditions.
Are there different types of food-borne illness?
A wide variety of pathogens (disease-producing organisms) can be caught from food and drink. The most common food-borne illnesses experienced by travelers include: Traveler's diarrhea (a very common complaint), giardasis, typhoid fever, …
What increases the chances of developing a food-borne illness while travelling?
Being in a high-risk group (such as children and older people), eating and using water from unsafe sources and individual health conditions all affect your chances of falling ill from food-borne illness.
About this article
Author: Dr Idan Ben-Barak PhD, MSc, BSc (Med)
First answered: 23 Nov 2014
Last reviewed: 14 May 2019
Rating: 4.5 out of 5
Votes: 723 (Click smiley face below left to rate)
Category: Food safety while travelling