Food Poisoning: Toxins in our daily food?

Carmen Lobitz
Picture of a woman with digestive problems
© Goffkein/

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What is food poisoning? Food poisoning is caused by eating vegetables, fruits or animal products that have been spoiled by toxins or pathogens (bacteria, fungi or viruses). In most cases food poisoning resolves itself within a few days. However, some plants or mushrooms contain dangerous toxins.

Which bacteria causes food poisoning?


Salmonella poisoning is caused by raw or undercooked animal foods (especially by eating raw eggs). Symptoms of salmonellosis include diarrhea, nausea, stomach pain as well as chills and fever. A salmonellosis case is rarely asymptomatic.


Listeria can be found in animal products such as raw milk, soft cheese e.g. Roquefort and Brie, or raw meat. A listeria infection is often asymptomatic. If symptoms do occur, they often include joint and muscle pain, fever, vomiting and diarrhea. Listeria can also spread to other organs, and may even cause meningitis. It is also possible for listeria to cause sepsis, endocarditis or peritonitis. Infants, elderly people, pregnant women and people with weakened immune systems are particularly s…

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