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10 Foods That You Need to Cook Properly If You Care About Your Health

There’s no problem with eating certain foods raw, including broccoli and bell peppers. However, some foods can lead to undesirable side effects if they’re not cooked well enough before consumption.

5-Minute Crafts has created this guide with 10 foods that you should always cook before eating.

❗Important: This article has been created for informative purposes only and does not replace professional advice regarding food safety. Keep in mind that the following list does not include all the foods that could be threatening to one’s health when eaten raw.

1. Cassava

Cassava is a root vegetable found in South American cuisine. Although it’s a great source of nutrients, it can be harmful when eaten uncooked, as it contains cyanide, a compound that can cause stomach pain, vomiting, and diarrhea. Cassava is still safe to eat, but only if it’s been washed thoroughly, rinsed, peeled, and cooked well.

2. Eggs

Raw eggs can have salmonella, which can lead to food poisoning. Therefore, you should always cook eggs until they’re completely firm.

💡Once cooked, refrigerate the eggs or other foods that contain them. For recipes that include raw eggs, such as Caesar dressing, choose pasteurized eggs only.

3. Flour

Flour is usually an agricultural product that hasn’t gone through any process to kill germs. So, the next time you feel tempted to taste raw cookie dough or cake batter, remember that, just like raw eggs, raw flour can bring negative consequences to your health.

4. Kidney beans

Raw or undercooked kidney beans can be hazardous to your health, as these contain a type of lectin that can lead to nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and other issues.

5. Lima beans

When eaten raw, lima beans can release a dangerous compound called hydrogen cyanide. That’s why you should always cook lima beans thoroughly before consumption.

6. Meat and poultry

Eating raw or undercooked pork, beef, turkey, or chicken can be very risky, as these foods contain different harmful bacteria, including campylobacter, E.coli, and salmonella. Therefore, always cook meat and poultry thoroughly before consumption by following these guidelines.

🚫 Don’t wash raw meat or poultry before you cook it, even if the recipe indicates to do so, as this step can spread harmful bacteria to other ingredients, surfaces, and utensils. At the same time, washing these foods won’t prevent any health issues.

7. Mushrooms

Including mushrooms in your diet can be very beneficial since they’re full of vitamins, fiber, and minerals. Moreover, they have no fat or cholesterol and are low in sodium. But experts warn of the dangers of eating them uncooked, as they’re hard to digest, and some types may contain toxins that can be destroyed only through cooking.

8. Potatoes

Raw potatoes can lead to bloating and other gastrointestinal issues due to the starches found in them, which are very difficult to digest. Since these starches are broken down when you cook the potatoes, you should always do so before eating them.

Avoid consuming potatoes with green spots on them, as they may have developed solanine, a toxin that could cause symptoms similar to those of food poisoning.

9. Oysters

When eaten raw or not well-cooked, oysters can be a potential source of vibrio bacteria, which is the case of vibriosis, a type of infection that can make you very sick.

❗There are a number of myths that try to ensure the safety of eating raw oysters, including that you should avoid those caught in polluted waters, or dip them in hot sauce to kill anything that could make you sick. However, it’s not advisable to eat them raw under any circumstances.

10. Sprouts

Sprouts can be a great source of nutrients, including phosphorus, vitamin K, and magnesium. However, radish and alfalfa sprouts can develop dangerous bacteria, such as salmonella, listeria, and E.coli, due to the warm, moist environment in which these sprouts are grown.

Therefore, it’s advisable to always buy fresh sprouts from local vendors. At the same time, you should always wash your sprouts thoroughly and cook them well before eating them.

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