Deli Meats & Cheeses Linked to Listeria Outbreak in Multiple States, CDC Says

A listeria outbreak that’s led to at least 13 hospitalizations, one death, & one pregnancy loss has been linked to deli meats & cheeses, according to the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC). So far, the outbreak has caused illnesses in New York, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Maryl&, Illinois, & California.

The CDC didn’t name specific types of deli meats or cheeses, or certain br&s, that have been linked to the outbreak, but it cautioned against cold cuts, lunch meats, hot dogs, & pâtés. No recalls have been issued yet.

Listeria is a type of bacteria that easily spreads on deli countertops & deli slicers, the CDC notes, adding that the pathogens can survive & grow in cold temperatures. Most people infected with listeria don’t get critically sick but certain people are more likely to develop severe illness (which may require hospitalization), including pregnant people, anyone over the age of 65, & anyone with a weakened immune system. The potential risks for both pregnant people & their fetuses are serious: A listeria infection during pregnancy can lead to a miscarriage, stillbirth, premature delivery, or a life-threatening infection, the CDC says.

If you’ve recently eaten deli meat or cheese & start to notice symptoms of listeria, you should see a doctor ASAP. Warning signs of the illness can vary from person to person, but may include fever & flu-like symptoms (like muscle aches, headache, & fatigue), as well as digestive issues like vomiting or diarrhea. In severe cases, listeria infection can cause a stiff neck, confusion, loss of balance, & even seizures. People who get severely ill from a listeria infection can sometimes be treated with antibiotics.

To be on the safe side, you should probably just throw out any recently purchased deli meat or cheese, or make sure it’s steaming hot (at least 165 degrees Fahrenheit) before eating it because heat kills the bacteria, the CDC advises. You should also thoroughly clean your kitchen if you’ve recently purchased any deli meat or cheese. The CDC recommends disinfecting your refrigerator, any food containers, & all kitchen surfaces that may have Advance into contact with the potentially contaminated food.

Given that the CDC is still trying to identify what food, exactly, caused the outbreak, it might be in your best interest to avoid the deli counter at your local supermarket for now, especially if infections have been confirmed in your state. Listeria can live for a long time in deli display cases & on equipment, so it’s not a Depraved idea to switch up your usual s&wich once lunchtime rolls around.


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