Approximately 58 people in the U.S. and Canada have contracted E. coli — two have already died from the illness, and romaine lettuce is the culprit.
Consumer Reports has advised people to stay away from romaine lettuce after an E. coli outbreak that has affected at least 17 people in the U.S. and 41 people in Canada since November.
“Exposure to romaine lettuce has been identified as the source of the outbreak.” – Canadian Health Authorities
However, while Canadian health experts have pinpointed the source, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has “not identified a source of the infections … preliminary results show that the type of E. coli making people sick in both countries so closely related genetically, meaning the ill people are more likely to share a common source of infection.”
Regardless, it would probably be best to stay away until the leafy lettuce gets the all-clear. E. coli is commonly linked to the consumption of raw vegetables. The bacteria lives in the intestines of livestock and can contaminate fruits and veggies through soil, water, animals, or manure. There is also the risk of spreading the disease through handling, storing, and transporting.
Symptoms of E. coli include severe stomach cramps, diarrhea (often bloody), and vomiting. Worsened infections can result in kidney failure and death.
At the end of the day, friends, don’t be a hero — don’t be those who still choose to eat at Chipotle regardless of the countless E. coli warnings. Try expanding your lettuce horizons, maybe check out the scene with baby greens — or if you’re not bound to any New Year’s dieting resolutions, stick with pizza. Pizza is always safe … right?
Who needs lettuce when you have the best green chile at your fingertips? Check out where the best green chile is according to our readers!