So you think you might have the coronavirus in your home? The best bet is to automatically assume that you do and then take all of the necessary precautions for eliminating it as best you can. While you’re doing that, you should also practice smart and sensible actions for keeping your hands from your face and washing them for at least twenty seconds when you touch any public surfaces like door knobs, kitchen cabinets, and counter-tops.
We’re all doing our best to comply with government guidelines for staying home and practicing social distancing when we leave the house. Even the reasons for leaving your house should be restricted to only the most basic necessities. Grocery shopping, picking up medications, visiting a doctor or veterinarian when a medical urgency arises.
Since we’re all home more often, that means a majority of us are probably cooking at home more often. Many of you are probably using the kitchen more routinely than ever before, which is great! But spending more time in the kitchen naturally means there is the potential for contamination and you need to be even more careful about disinfecting and sanitizing the work space where you prep and cook food, not to mention where you sit down to eat.
The last part is particularly important for homes where more than one family member resides and even more critical for those members who are at higher risk for infection due to weakened immunity. We’re all in this together, we each must do our part to prevent the spread of this virus. Stay at home and quarantine yourself should you be exposed to anyone else who has tested positive for COVID-19.
When it comes to your food, keep these very important kitchen habits in mind. These can all do you a whole lot of good to prevent you from getting yourself and others sick.
Wash Your Hands
Yes, we mentioned this above but it bears repeating over and over again. The CDC strongly recommends that you wash your hands before prepping or consuming any meal. The way a pandemic begins is when we allow the virus to spread without doing everything within our power to stop it. Washing our hands is our number one defense against spreading this virus.
This is something you should already be doing but now it’s even more critical for keeping you and others safe. Don’t worry about what kind of soap you may be using; regular hand soap is sufficient. Just be sure that your water is hot without scalding yourself.
Above all, you must wash your hands for at least twenty seconds. Don’t put all of your focus on the palms of your hands either, concentrate on your fingers. At the fingertips and in between the fingers. You should pay attention to under the fingernails as well, bacteria and germs can hide under there easily.
Sanitize Your Kitchen Surfaces
Many of us confuse cleaning and sanitizing and that can be putting your health in danger. When you clean, you are eliminating dirt, bacteria, and other grime with soap and water or some other alternative cleanser. When you sanitize, you are killing germs and reducing their numbers greatly by wiping them out with much stronger solutions, such as bleach.
This distinction can come in handy when you are faced with a kitchen surface that has not been attended to after you or other members of your family might have touched something that has been infected with coronavirus.
So be choosy about how you sanitize your kitchen and the workspaces where you prepare and cook your meals. It may be just what you need for ensuring that your kitchen is entirely healthy.
Clean Your Raw Produce
Buying fresh produce, from cucumbers to mushrooms to strawberries, means you will need to take some precautions when it comes to cleaning it properly. Any produce that you intend to consume without first cooking it should always wash fully. This way you can be sure you are disrupting the spread of the virus and removing it from your produce.
Now you can’t really get the coronavirus from food (the virus needs a host like a person or an animal in order to survive), but the germs can remain on the surface of your produce when touched by someone else who is carrying the virus. Heat will kill the germs but if you are not planning on cooking the produce before you eat it, it’s best to wash it under running water.