Dole Recalls Spinach Over Salmonella Concerns
By Julia Ries
This might not be the best week to load up on your leafy greens.
Dole Fresh Vegetables Inc. has issued a recall for several packages of baby spinach due to a possible Salmonella contamination.
The recall was issued after a random sample of the spinach tested positive for Salmonella, Dole stated in an announcement shared by the Food and Drug AdministrationTrusted Source (FDA) last week.
No illnesses have been linked to the affected products so far, but health officials are urging consumers to throw away the products immediately as Salmonella Trusted Source can cause severe health issues in some people — especially infants, older adults, and those with compromised immune systems.
"Salmonella is concerning to consumers because it can contaminate food and lead to foodborne illness. Though most cases of Salmonella are not severe and consist of diarrhea, abdominal pain, and fever, in certain individuals it can lead to bloodstream infections, hospitalization, and death," Dr. Amesh Adalja, an infectious diseases physician and senior scholar at the Johns Hopkins University Center for Health Security, told Healthline.
Here’s What’s Been Recalled
The contaminated spinach products were sold in Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Tennessee, Virginia and Wisconsin.
They affected products, which have a use-by date of August 5, 2019, include:
- 6 ounce Dole Baby Spinach bag, Lot code W20308A (UPC code 0-71430-00964-2)
- 10 ounce Dole Baby Spinach clamshell, Lot code W203010 (UPC code 0-71430-00016-8)
According to Dole, the packages were expired and should no longer be on the shelves.
However, seeing as people may still have the spinach stored in their fridge, it's crucial to check your food and throw it away if it's from the affected lots.
Salmonella Comes on Quick and Usually Clears Up On Its Own
Most people who become infected with Salmonella will experience symptoms, like diarrhea and abdominal pain, for about four to seven days before it clears up on its own.
In general, the incubation period is fairly short, with symptoms popping up between eight hours to three days after you've eaten any affected foods.
"It tends to happen relatively quickly. If you ate it last week and you're feeling fine, you don't need to fret," said Dr. Robert S. Brown, the clinical chief of the division of gastroenterology and hepatology at NewYork-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center.
In certain patients, like the immunosuppressed, the infection can spread from the intestines to the bloodstream. When this happens, Salmonella can be life threatening unless it's promptly treated with antibiotics.
Contaminated Fresh Veggies Can Cause Massive Outbreaks
This isn't the first time fresh spinach has carried dangerous bacteria into the homes of thousands of consumers.
You may recall the 2006 spinach recall Trusted Source that sent more than 200 people to the hospital and caused three deaths, due to a widespread E. coli contamination.
Fresh veggies become contaminated with bacteria when infected fecal matter — usually from the gastrointestinal tracts of animals — makes its way into the growing, harvesting, or food preparation processes.
Contaminated vegetables can cause an outbreak when people don't wash their vegetables, let alone cook them, Brown explained.
That said, it looks like this recall won't be causing a massive outbreak anywhere close to the 2006 spinach fiasco.
There've been no reported illnesses thus far, and the number of affected lots is fairly limited in size.
In addition, Salmonella tends to cause a much milder illness than the type of E. coli that circulated back in 2006, according to Adalja.
Still, the multi-state outbreak in 2006 shed light on the possible public health risks of eating contaminated veggies and the importance of paying attention to urgent recall notices.
"Foodborne outbreaks have the potential to become very large and impact large swaths of the country," Adalja said. "Because of this, it is very important that people be aware of the risk of these illnesses and adhere to good food preparation practices."
The Bottom Line
Dole Fresh Vegetables Inc. issued a recall for several packages of fresh baby spinach due to a possible Salmonella contamination.
While there have been no reported illnesses linked to the contamination yet, health officials are urging consumers to throw away the affected products as Salmonella can cause severe health issues in infants, the elderly, and those with weakened immune systems.
While the infection usually clears up on its own in most people, at-risk patients may experience blood stream infections, hospitalization, and even death.
Reposted with permission from our media associate Healthline.
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Since even moderate-intensity workouts offer a slew of benefits, walking is a good choice for people looking to stay healthy.
How to Rock Your Walk<p>Walking isn't just fun and healthy. It's accessible.</p><p>"Walking is cheap," says Dr. John Paul H. Rue, a sports medicine doctor at <a href="https://mdmercy.com/" target="_blank">Mercy Medical Center in Baltimore</a>. "You can do it anywhere at any time; [it] requires little to no special equipment and has many of the same cardio benefits as running or other more intense workouts."</p><p>Want to up your walking game? Try the tips below.</p>
Use Hand Weights<p>Cardio and strength training can go hand-in-hand when you add weights to your walk.</p><p>A <a href="https://journals.lww.com/acsm-msse/Fulltext/2019/03000/Associations_of_Resistance_Exercise_with.14.aspx" target="_blank">2019 study</a> found that weight training is good for your heart, and <a href="https://www.mayoclinicproceedings.org/article/S0025-6196(17)30167-2/abstract" target="_blank">research</a> shows it reduces the risk of developing a <a href="https://www.healthline.com/health/nutrition-metabolism-disorders" target="_blank">metabolic disorder</a> by 17 percent. People with metabolic disorders have a higher chance of being diagnosed with high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and diabetes.</p><p>Rue suggests not carrying weights for your entire walk.</p><p>"Hand weights can give you an added level of energy burning, but you have to be careful with these because carrying [them] over a long period of time or while walking could actually lead to some overuse injuries," he says.</p>
Make It a Circuit<p>As another option, consider doing a circuit. First, put a pair of dumbbells on your lawn or somewhere in your home. Walk around the block once, then stop and do some bicep curls and tricep lifts before walking around the block again.</p><p>Rue recommends <a href="https://www.healthline.com/health/exercise-fitness/running-with-weights" target="_blank">avoiding ankle weights</a> during cardio workouts, as they force you to use your quadriceps rather than hamstrings. They can also cause muscle imbalance, according to the <a href="https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/wearable-weights-how-they-can-help-or-hurt" target="_blank">Harvard Health Letter</a>.</p>
Find a Fitness Trail<p>Strength training isn't limited to weights. You can get stronger by <a href="https://www.healthline.com/health/bodyweight-workout" target="_blank">simply using your body</a>.</p><p>Often found at parks, fitness trails are obstacle courses with equipment for pullups, pushups, rowing, and stretches to build upper and lower body strength.</p><p>Try searching "fitness trails near me" online, checking out your local parks and recreation website, or calling the municipal office to <a href="https://calisthenics-parks.com/" target="_blank">find one</a>.</p>
Recruit a Friend<p>People who workout together stay healthy together.</p><p><a href="https://bmcgeriatr.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12877-017-0584-3" target="_blank">One study</a> showed that older adults who exercised with a group improved or maintained their functional health and enjoyed their lives more.</p><p>Enlist the help of a walking buddy with a regimen you aspire to have. If you don't know anyone in your area, apps like <a href="https://www.strava.com/" target="_blank">Strava</a> have social networking features so you can get support from fellow exercisers.</p>
Try Meditation<p>According to the <a href="https://www.nccih.nih.gov/research/statistics/nhis/2017" target="_blank">2017 National Health Interview Survey</a>, published by the National Institutes of Health, meditation is on the rise, and for good reason.</p><p>Researchers <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29616846/" target="_blank">found</a> that mind-body relaxation practices can regulate inflammation, <a href="https://www.healthline.com/health/biological-rhythms" target="_blank">circadian rhythms</a>, and <a href="https://www.healthline.com/health/glucose" target="_blank">glucose</a> metabolism, as well as lower <a href="https://www.healthline.com/health/high-blood-pressure-hypertension" target="_blank">blood pressure</a>.</p><p>"Any form of exercise can be turned into a meditation of some type, either by the surroundings you are walking in, like a park or trail, or by blocking out the outside world with music on your headphones," Rue says.</p><p>You can also play a podcast or download an app like <a href="https://www.headspace.com/headspace-meditation-app" target="_blank">Headspace</a> that has a library of guided meditations to practice while you walk.</p>
Do Fartlek Walks<p>Typically used in running, fartlek intervals alternate periods of increased and decreased speed. These are <a href="https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/benefits-of-hiit" target="_blank">high-intensity interval training (HIIT)</a> workouts, which allow exercisers to accomplish more in less time.</p><p><a href="https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0154075" target="_blank">One study</a> showed that 10-minute interval training improved <a href="https://www.healthline.com/health/metabolic-syndrome" target="_blank">cardiometabolic</a> health, or lowered the risk of heart disease, stroke, and diabetes, just as well as working out at a continuous pace for 50 minutes.</p><p><a href="https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0111489" target="_blank">Research</a> also shows that HIIT workouts increase muscle <a href="https://www.healthline.com/health/fast-twitch-muscles" target="_blank">oxidative</a> capacity, or the ability to use oxygen. To do a fartlek walk, try walking at an increased pace for 3 minutes, slow down for 2 minutes, and repeat.</p>
Gradually Increase Pace<p>A faster walking pace is associated with a lower risk of <a href="https://www.healthline.com/health/copd" target="_blank">chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)</a> and respiratory diseases, according to a <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30303933/" target="_blank">2019 study</a>.</p><p>Still, it's best not to go from a stroll to an Olympic-worthy power walk in a day. Instead, increase your pace gradually to prevent injury.</p><p>"Start by walking at a brisk pace for about 10 minutes per day, 3 to 5 days per week," Rue says. "Once you've done this for a few weeks, increase your time by 5 to 10 minutes per day until you get to 30 minutes."</p>
Add Stairs<p>You've likely heard that taking the stairs instead of an elevator is a way to add more movement into your daily routine. It's also a way to step up your walking. Stair climbing has been shown to <a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2211335519301123?via%3Dihub" target="_blank">decrease the risk of mortality</a> and can easily add a bit more challenge to your walk.</p><p>If you don't have stairs in your home, you can often find them outside a local municipal building, train station, or at a high school stadium.</p>
Is Your Walk a True Cardio Workout?<p>Not all walks are equal. A walk that's too leisurely may not provide enough burn to qualify as cardio. To see if you're getting a good workout, try to <a href="https://www.healthline.com/health/how-to-check-heart-rate" target="_blank">measure your heart rate</a> using a monitor.</p><p>"A target goal for a good walking workout heart rate is about 50 to 70 percent of your maximum heart rate," Rue says, adding that maximum heart rate is <a href="https://www.healthline.com/health/fitness-exercise/fat-burning-heart-rate" target="_blank">typically calculated</a> by 220 beats per minute minus your age.</p><p>You can also monitor how easily you can carry on a conversation while you walk to gauge your heart rate.</p><p>"If you can walk and carry on a normal conversation, that's probably a lower intensity walk," says Rue. "If you are slightly breathless but can still have a conversation, that's probably a moderate workout. If you are out of breath and can't talk normally, that's a vigorous workout."</p>
Takeaway<p>By shaking up your routine, you can add excitement to your workout and reap even more rewards than a basic walk provides. Increasing the pace and intensity of a workout will make it more effective.</p><p>Simply pick your favorite variation to add some spice to your next walk.</p>
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