Health Watch - July Fourth: Grilling Safety

Health Watch is a Public Service of the Office of News and Publications and is intended to provide general information only and should not replace the advice of a medical professional. You should contact your physician if you have questions about any of these topics.


This week on Health Watch, we’re talking about enjoying the Fourth of July safely. A cookout is a popular way to celebrate the holiday, whether in the backyard, at the lake or before the fireworks display. But remember that cooking outdoors doesn’t mean you can forget about food safety procedures.

Food spoils more quickly in warm weather, so you need to be extra careful when cooking outdoors. Keep foods chilled in the refrigerator or in coolers until it’s time to cook or serve them, and don’t leave foods like cold cuts, dairy products or raw meats out for more than an hour.

Lona Sandon, a registered dietitian at UT Southwestern Medical Center, says you should put raw meat on the grill as soon as possible after removing it from the fridge or cooler. Eating outside is no excuse for not washing your hands before eating, especially after handling raw mat. If soap and water aren’t available, use a hand sanitizer gel or wipe.

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June 2010


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