In 1839 someone shortened the word influenza to flu. According to the Merck Manual of Medical Information, “influenza (flu) is infection of the lungs and airways with one of the influenza viruses causing a fever, runny nose, sore throat, and a general feeling of illness (malaise).” What does this have to do with your stomach or any other part of the digestive track? Who makes this terminology up? It is important to get the language down correctly because stomach flu is what many people have named an actual condition called gastroenteritis. Gastroenteritis is inflammation of the lining of the stomach and intestinal tract, a condition usually resulting from food borne illness (food poisoning), which causes severe nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. Sounds scary and it certainly can be. What is even more frightening is the number of people who come down with this condition each year.
In the United States 1 out of 4 people, approximately 76 million individuals, acquire a food-related illness each year, according to Centers for Disease Control (CDC). To be more specific; 48 million get sick, 128,000 are hospitalized, and 3,000 die. The CDC’s 2011 estimates blame Norovirus and bacteria’s; Salmonella, Clostridium-perfringens, and Campylobacter for most of the infections and symptoms.
It is time to get serious about these pathogens and their transfer to our bodies, we need to call food poisoning what it really is, contagious and dangerous! Come on, “stomach flu”, “piles”, oh, and don’t forget about grandpa’s enlarged “prostrate”. Did someone mean; food poisoning, hemorrhoids, and prostate? Who knows? I personally like the term “piles” it sounds better than what it really is!
UFE (urine feces everywhere), will follow up with this food borne illness topic as we are presently in the middle of the holiday season. How to avoid food contamination and the spread of contagions will be following….