My advice to anyone traveling to the United States is not eat anything at all. If you must eat, bring a picnic lunch with you from your own country. I know that is a little harsh but hey, it is a whole lot better than experiencing what I am going through right now which is: nausea, abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhea, fever and headache.
These are the classic symptoms of Salmonella infection. Not fun stuff at all. Symptoms last from three to seven days. How did I get it? Look at the picture to the left.
I love good peanut butter. I discovered early on that it is possible to live for weeks, maybe even months, on nothing but crackers, peanut butter and water. It is quick and easy. If you don’t get the “Natural” kind, it doesn’t require refrigeration so it can be carried around in a backpack. NOTE: I’m not saying this is nutritionally balanced. I’m saying you won’t starve and you can keep functioning.
When I was a kid and we were really, really poor – way before there was such a thing as food stamps – the government used to give out “commodities” to “poor” people. One of the things that was always included in the handout was peanut butter. Most of the time we didn’t get commodities because my dad didn’t believe in handouts. He was kind of a “What! Me take a handout? I’d sooner let my kids starve” kind of a guy. But when we did get some, I remember that peanut butter! It was loaded with saturated fats and oils but it sure was good. Anyway, that is how my addiction to peanut butter began. It was the government’s fault.
Now that I am a bit older, my tastes and diet have changed somewhat. I read labels before I buy and I steer away from products that contain ingredients I can’t pronounce. I go for the more “natural” products.
Which brings us back to the picture above. What is the biggest word on that label? “NATURAL”! The ingredients list says it contains peanuts and 1% or less of salt. That’s it. No where does it mention SALMONELLA. And, really, I guess if you got right down to it, salmonella is natural, right? It’s just not natural for human consumption.
Be that as it may, it turns out that my jar of peanut butter is “suspected” of containing salmonella and it was recalled two days ago – about ten days after I bought it and about three days after I opened it and ate a good huge peanut butter and banana sandwich.
Oh, hey wait a minute – the banana! That’s it. Bananas come from one of those unclean Central American countries. Yeah, it must have been the banana.