Some people shouldn’t eat meat or cheese at deli counters due to an ongoing listeria outbreak in the United States that has killed one person, sickened more than a dozen others and caused a pregnancy lost, according to federal health officials.
“You are at higher risk of severe listeria disease if you are pregnant, age 65 or older, or have a weakened immune system due to certain medical conditions or treatments,” the Centers for Disease said Wednesday. United States Control and Prevention in a published alert. on the agency’s website.
“If you fall into one of these groups, do not eat meat or cheese from a deli counter unless it is reheated to an internal temperature of 165°F or until let it be smoking.”
The CDC said people who are not in these groups are unlikely to get seriously ill from the pathogen, although they can still get sick with mild symptoms of food poisoning, such as as diarrhea and fever. Most people recover without treatment, but the agency warned that the disease can lead to serious illness or even death in newborn babies, while pregnant women can experience pregnancy loss or premature birth.
Six states affected
Warning comes as CDC investigates listeria outbreak, in six states: California, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey and New York. “Deli meats and cheese purchased from deli counters in several states are the likely sources of this outbreak,” the CDC said.
Of seven people stricken in New York, five purchased sliced deli meats or cheese from at least one NetCost Market location, but investigators believe tainted food was sold at delis elsewhere.
NetCost Market temporarily closed its grocery store in Brooklyn for deep cleaning, but the epidemic strain was found there in September. Additional tests did not find the bacteria after additional cleaning, according to the agency.
About 1,600 Americans get listeriosis each year and about 260 die from it, with young people, the elderly, and women who are pregnant or have weakened immune systems most vulnerable to infection, according to the CDC.
An overwhelming majority of those cases come from deli meats, which accounts for more than 90% of listeriosis cases in the United States, according to recently released findings from the University of Minnesota’s School of Public Health.
The rest comes from ready-to-eat salads, cheeses and frozen vegetables, the researchers found.
Cases of life-threatening foodborne illnesses are likely to rise as Americans eat more processed foods, they predict in an analysis to be published in the December edition of the International Journal of Food. Microbiology.