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Oklahomans can avoid food-borne Thanksgiving disease by tipping

As families gather around the table to eat this Thanksgiving, a food safety expert has pondered how to keep stomachs happy during the holiday season. Leaving food out for too long or consuming undercooked meals can lead to foodborne illnesses, which can be potentially dangerous. “You really don’t want to bring foodborne illnesses to your Thanksgiving gathering,” said Meredith Carothers of the US Department of Agriculture. It’s important to thaw Thanksgiving turkey in the refrigerator—not on the counter at room temperature. “These bacteria that are on the turkey can multiply to dangerous levels and ultimately just create a bad situation for your turkey,” Carothers said. “We don’t want that to happen.” When it’s time to cook the turkey, use a food thermometer to make sure the meat is at a safe internal temperature. Carothers said it’s important to check the thickest part of the turkey breast, the innermost part of the wing and the innermost part of the thigh to make sure they’ve all reached 165 degrees. Food should not be stored at room temperature for more than two hours. When sticking food in the fridge, it’s important to break it up into smaller portions, as large foods take longer to cool. Leftovers should be consumed within four days or frozen. “If you’re eating on actual Thanksgiving Thursday, you should set a timer or a calendar reminder or something for Monday,” Carothers said. When transferring food, the food should be well insulated and not left for more than two hours.

As families gather around the table to eat this Thanksgiving, a food safety expert has pondered how to keep stomachs happy during the holiday season.

Leaving food out for too long or consuming undercooked meals can lead to foodborne illnesses, which can be potentially dangerous.

“You really don’t want to bring foodborne illnesses to your Thanksgiving gathering,” said Meredith Carothers of the US Department of Agriculture.

It’s important to thaw Thanksgiving turkey in the refrigerator—not on the counter at room temperature.

“These bacteria that are on the turkey can multiply to dangerous levels and ultimately just create a bad situation for your turkey,” Carothers said. “We don’t want that to happen.”

When it’s time to cook the turkey, use a food thermometer to make sure the meat is at a safe internal temperature.

Carothers said it’s important to check the thickest part of the turkey breast, the innermost part of the wing and the innermost part of the thigh to make sure they’ve all reached 165 degrees.

Food should not be stored at room temperature for more than two hours. When sticking food in the fridge, it’s important to break it up into smaller portions, as large foods take longer to cool.

Leftovers should be consumed within four days or frozen.

“If you’re eating on Thanksgiving Thursday, you should set a timer or a calendar reminder or something for Monday,” Carothers said.

When transferring food, the food should be well insulated and not left for more than two hours.

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