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Is the E-coli bacteria, or the poo bacteria dangerous?

  1. People who go on holiday or work and / or live in African countries have to take into account all kinds of inconveniences. A vaccination is possible against many inconveniences, but sometimes new inconveniences are added. Intestines often play an important role in this as well. For example, Escherichaia coli, often abbreviated as E-coli bacteria, is regularly in the news. For example, the TV program ZEMBLA made a special broadcast about the E-coli bacteria in 2013. The Escherichaia coli is often called the poop bacteria popularly. According to ZEMBLA, the so-called poop bacteria is found in large quantities in the edible meat. The research results of a study by Wakker Dier in September 2014 showed again that a lot of meat, and especially barbecue meat, is contaminated with the so-called poop bacteria. It is a distasteful idea that you have a piece of meat on your plate that is contaminated with the poop bacteria, but is this E-coli bacteria really harmful to your health?

E-coli bacteria or poop bacteria

  1. The Escherichia coli is a group of rod-shaped bacteria that occurs naturally in the intestines of animals and humans. These bacteria aim to protect the body against other harmful bacteria. The E-coli bacteria is therefore in most cases a harmless and useful bacteria. However, there are hundreds of different types of bacteria that are descended from E-coli and come under the same name. Most of these so-called poop bacteria are also harmless, but a few types of E-coli bacteria can make the human body very ill. However, there are some types of E. coli that can cause foodborne infections. These E-coli types can occur in daily life for example on:

Harmful E-coli bacteria

  1. Although most E-coli bacteria are harmless, there are also about two hundred different E-coli species that produce the toxic substance shiga toxin. Shiga toxin is also called verocytotoxin. Most E-coli bacteria containing this substance can cause harmful effects in the human body. For example, a harmful E-coli bacteria can cause traveler's diarrhea, among other things. Travelers' diarrhea is a sudden deviation from the normal stool pattern. Travelers' diarrhea can mainly develop when traveling to subtropical areas.


  1. One type of harmful E. coli bacteria forms a group called the EHEC. When one has become infected with EHEC, one does not naturally have to get health problems. A large group of people who have become infected with the EHEC will not get any complaints and will therefore never find out that he or she is infected. Another group of people who have become infected with EHEC will have to deal with disease symptoms. The symptoms can be, for example:

Prevent E-coli contamination?

  1. Infection of a toxic E-coli bacteria or the EHEC bacteria is usually caused by:

Nutritional advice

  1. That is why the Dutch Nutrition Center gives some nutritional advice to prevent contamination with the EHEC bacteria.

Influence after infection with the E-coli on kidney function

  1. It depends on the type of E-coli that can lead to an infection and will result in more or less serious annoying and irritating symptoms. In many cases people do not notice that they are infected. Other infections become public due to complaints such as:

Disease symptoms

  1. Infection often results in a symptom of disease. The table shows the associated disease symptoms of different types of E-coli.

Little resistance

  1. Especially young children, the elderly, pregnant women, people with little resistance, because they are sensitive to contamination by an E-coli infection, belong to a risk group.

How long can the E-coli survive or survive?

  1. By staying in the soil for months and weeks in water, the bacteria can survive. In addition, the E-coli multiplies between 10 and 40 ° C and the E-coli only dies at 65 ° C.

Contamination by E-coli can therefore very easily take place via:

  1. Eating raw meat. Consider, for example, raw minced meat, raw or half-cooked burgers, filet americain and undercooked meat. These could very likely be contaminated with E. coli. Eating raw vegetables. Such as lettuce, and sprouts such as bean sprouts. Therefore, eat cooked vegetables because that is not a problem, because the bacteria die from heating. Drinking raw milk and eating raw milk cheese and consuming fruit juice unheated. unsanitary production conditions.

Restaurants and cruise ships

  1. Many people are not aware that eating meals in restaurants and on cruise ships, with careless hygiene, can also be the cause of E-coli contamination.

Contact with animals

  1. Although this is not or hardly indicated in zoos and children's farms, contact with animals, in particular cattle and young animals, is also a possibility of being infected with an E-coli.]


  1. The season with the greatest risk of infection is summer. That is why it is important to pay extra attention in the summer. Just think of contamination from swimming in contaminated surface water and the cozy barbecue evenings.

Risk of infection

  1. If one is infected then during the illness one as an E-coli patient is contagious to others through the feces. This period can last approximately 2 months. Further spread can also be prevented by washing your hands thoroughly after every visit to the toilet and especially during the preparation of food and cooking.

Advice to prevent contamination

  1. It is advisable to avoid contamination with E-coli. The following advice applies to prevent contamination:


  1. Also avoid cross contamination. This means that you should not prick raw meat with the same fork and then eat it cooked. Never use the same surface for raw meat and never put cooked food on the same and not cleaned surface.

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