Saturday, July 10, 2010

Safe from Sprouts?

Q: Safe from Sprouts?
I have heard that raw bean sprouts contain salmonella. Is this true and do you have any suggestions for alternatives or ways to clean them?
A: In 2002 the FDA issued a health advisory warning consumers of the risks associated with eating raw sprouts due to an outbreak of E. coli associated with alfalfa sprouts. The advisory also included raw and undercooked mung bean sprouts.

I have long advised against eating bean sprouts raw because of toxins they contain that are only broken down by thorough cooking. (The toxin in alfalfa sprouts is canavanine, which can harm the immune system.) The problem for which the FDA issued its warning concerns outbreaks of foodborne illnesses stemming from the bacteria Salmonella or E. Coli. Read more...

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