The Department of Health (DOH) has reminded parents of school children to teach their children on how to detect poorly prepared foods that they can buy inside or outside their school to protect them from diseases and other ailments.
At the weekly health forum of the Philippine College of Physicians, Rolando Santiago, DOH supervising health program officer, shared tips on what students and parents should watch out for in food retailers to keep them safe and protected.
“Looking for a sanitary permit is a must in entering a food establishment whether in or out of schools,” Santiago said.
He added that current regulations on food safety, especially in and around schools, are already in place to ensure students are always protected from potential harm of hepatitis A, typhoid and cholera.
“Safe and wholesome foods are those that have been passed as fit for human consumption and do not contain residue in excess of set limits and are free of obvious contamination,” according to Santiago.
He explained that these foods are “free of defects that are generally recognized as objectionable to consumers and have been produced under adequate hygiene control” and have not been treated with illegal substances.
Santiago warned against food poisoning, “an acute illness [that is caused by]ingestion of foods contaminated by bacteria, bacterial toxins, natural poisons or harmful chemical substances.”
Results of eating contaminated food, he said, range from an upset stomach to more serious symptoms including diarrhea, fever, vomiting, abdominal cramps and dehydration.
Factors behind food poisoning, Santiago added, are poor sanitation, improper preparation, inadequate temperature control and “sometimes” unhygienic food handlers.