CDC Warns Romaine Lettuce Is Suspect Amidst E. Coli Outbreak

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a stern warning not to eat romaine lettuce—or any lettuce whatsoever, unless it’s clearly not from Arizona—as a serious E. coli outbreak has poisoned over 50 people.

According to NBC News, while nobody has died, 31 people were hospitalized with five people facing a serious E. Coli-related infection called hemolytic uremic syndrome. It was the recent spread of infection to Alaska that urged CDC officials to take note, with infections now being reported in 16 states.

“Based on new information from Alaska, CDC is expanding its warning to cover all types of romaine lettuce from the Yuma, Arizona growing region,” said the CDC. “This warning now includes whole heads and hearts of romaine lettuce, in addition to chopped romaine salads and salad mixes containing romaine.” 

The CDC says that it doesn't have the figures of affected Alaskans yet and also hasn't ascertained just where this contaminated lettuce is coming from. “No common grower, supplier, distributor, or brand has been identified at this time,” it said. Naturally, the easiest solution for everyone right now is simple: don’t risk it, and avoid any kind of lettuce for the time being.

“People who have store-bought romaine lettuce at home, including whole heads and hearts of romaine, chopped romaine, and salads and salad mixes containing romaine lettuce, should not eat it and should throw it away, even if some of it was eaten and no one has gotten sick,” said the CDC. “If you do not know if the lettuce is romaine, do not eat it and throw it away,” it said, simplifying the decision for everyone. The organization also urged consumers to ask businesses “about the source of their romaine lettuce,” and verify it doesn't hail “from the Yuma, Arizona growing region.” 

As for the CDC’s process of deducing the common salad denominator here, the organization logically arrived at its conclusion. “Most people reported eating a salad at a restaurant, and romaine lettuce was the only common ingredient identified among the salads eaten,” said the CDC. “The restaurants reported using bagged, chopped romaine lettuce to make salads.” 

Unfortunately, as NBC News reports, it can take several weeks to locate ground zero of a food poisoning epidemic. A lot of food is shipped to plants where it’s mixed, processed, and packaged together with other food from all kinds of farms, across the country. It’s then redistributed, with the actual source being extremely difficult to determine. As for the physical symptoms of E. coli, they include painful stomach cramps, bloody diarrhea, and vomiting. The bacterial disease is spread through water, animal droppings, or undercooked beef. Stay healthy, everyone—don’t eat lettuce for a bit.

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Thirty Children Have Died of the Flu This Season in the U.S., According to CDC

The Center for Disease Control estimates that at least 30 children died from the flu in the past few months.

In new data, the CDC shared that over 74,000 people have contracted the flu this season. Of course, this number is likely higher, since not everyone who gets the flu checks in with a doctor.

But Lynnette Brammer, the head of CDC's Domestic Flu Surveillance team, is anticipating a drop in numbers.

“Hopefully we're at the peak now, but until we see it go down for a couple of weeks we won't know that we have reached peak yet,” said Brammer to CNN. “Some areas of the country may have, but I think some areas are probably still going up.”

However, with the federal shutdown happening, the epidemic could still get worse since the CDC is a government organization. In the meantime, Brammer shared some ways to combat the spreading disease.

“We want to continue to emphasize that there's still a lot of flu activity to come, people that haven't been vaccinated should still get the vaccine,” she said. “Given that we're seeing so much flu activity, particularly people who are high risk, the elderly, children under 2, pregnant women, and people with chronic health problems should talk to their doctors about antiviral medications to treat the Illness.”

The CDC notes that flu season usually starts off in October with the peak of the season usually happening between December and February. However, the hostile season can sometimes last until May.

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Steve Aoki, The Chainsmokers & More Campaign For A World Without HIV/AIDS

image via lifebeat.org

I’m all about safety in raving and in life. I wasn’t a sheltered child by any means, but my house was always stocked with the necessary medical supplies like antiseptics and bandages.

Now that I’m older, I have to worry about a different kind of safety.

According to AIDS.gov, “CDC estimates that 1,201,100 persons aged 13 years and older are living with HIV infection, including 168,300 (14%) who are unaware of their infection. Over the past decade, the number of people living with HIV has increased, while the annual number of new HIV infections has remained relatively stable. Still, the pace of new infections continues at far too high a level— particularly among certain groups.”

It’s a growing issue that has flown relatively under the raider since the AIDS scares of the late-90s, but it’s still well above manageable levels. With a little support, the millennial generation could be the one to break the cycle, and DJs want to help.

Steve Aoki, The Chainsmokers, A-Trak, Fedde Le Grand, 3LAU and Dirty South have all teamed up with LifeBeat.org to raise awareness about HIV and help prevent the spread. It’s as simple as practicing safe sex with a condom.

This article was first published on Your EDM.
Source: Steve Aoki, The Chainsmokers & More Campaign For A World Without HIV/AIDS