MAINTAINING A HEALTHY HOME - THE KITCHEN

2017-10-26 | 146 Views

Good preventive medicine – the practical steps one should take to avoid disease and injury – starts with maintaining a safe and healthy home for you and your family. Humans interact with the environment constantly; so, maintaining a healthy environment is central to maintaining and improving the quality of life.

Your home should be a haven of comfort and safety. However, there are unseen dangers that may threaten your family's wellbeing. Chemicals, germs, viruses, and other pests can do you harm if left unchecked. In this edition, we'll share a few tips on what you can do to create or improve a healthy environment in your kitchen. Everyone drifts in and out of the kitchen at various times of the day; it is one of the central areas in a home. It's also a major target area; practically every surface is a magnet for bacteria, viruses, germs, roaches, and other pests.

Sponges/Dish Towels
The sponge can hold mold, as well as thousands of germs and food-borne pathogens if not cleaned or stored properly. Cloth dish towels can also harbor unhealthy microorganisms, even if they are only used for drying clean dishes.
Health Tips: Place the sponge in the dishwasher with the drying cycle on or get it wet and put it in the microwave to sanitize. Wash dish towels often, using the hot cycle of your washing machine.

Cutting Board
Never cut vegetables or fruit on the same cutting board that you use to slice raw meat, unless you thoroughly clean it between chops. Keeping veggies and raw meat separated will avoid cross contamination and the possible spread of salmonella, E. coli, and other bacteria.
Health Tip: For added safety and peace of mind, have two cutting boards – one for raw meat and one for fruits, vegetables, and everything else.

Countertops
Keep all surfaces cleaned and sanitized after you cook. This extra step will help eliminate food bacteria such as campylobacter (a common cause of diarrhea) and will discourage roaches from feasting on the leftovers. These household pests carry a number of germs and can also trigger asthma and allergies.
Health Tip: Sanitize the counter after wiping down with soap and water; one teaspoon of chlorine bleach for every 4 cups of water will do the trick. This extra step will help kill any remaining germs.

Extra Tips:
1) Keep a lid on possible roach infestation by washing dishes immediately after meals
2) Store food in tightly sealed containers
3) Keep trash in a container with a top on it