We love in perilous times. Coronavirus, the new sheriff in town, has everyone running scared. Within a twinkle of an eye, a disease that started in one country has become a pandemic. Today, nations stand still because of this one disease. Of course, you don’t need an international passport or a visa to get infected. Contact with an infected person or a contaminated surface is enough to bring you down. But how do you know an infected person or a contaminated surface? The answer is, you don’t. This infamous strain of coronavirus, known as COVID-19, no dey show for face.
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Now, if you’re wondering how this affects you and your kitchen, calm down, I’ll tell you. Nigeria is starting to tow the path of other countries by closing down schools and discouraging public gatherings. By necessary implication, if COVID-19 is not brought under control soon, we all might face partial or total confinement. So here is how you and your kitchen are involved. The kitchen is the heart of the home. What comes out of it affects every member of the family. Thus your family’s safety should be your top priority this period. I’m sure you’d find the following tips helpful:
Wipe down high touch surfaces
High touch surfaces refer to things used often by multiple people. As has already been mentioned, coronavirus is passed through contact with contaminated surfaces. So leave nothing to chance. Wipe down and disinfect kitchen chairs, work surfaces, fridge and freezer handles, microwave, drawers, sink, door knobs. Do this more often if a family member is sick.
Cook your own food
At the risk of having my head bitten off by restaurant owners, I think this is not a good time to eat out. This is so because more than half the population in Nigeria are not as conscious of this disease as they ought to be. So, chances of contamination are higher in such social places as restaurants; this is especially so if children are involved. So, take control of your kitchen and prepare healthy meals there. They will help to boost your family’s immune system.
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Moreover, with kids at home, you should make provision for light food and, beverages that they can snack on. As much as you’d want to be, you’re not omnipresent and touching without washing is risky business these days. So, make provision for light food and drink for the kids. It will reduce the temptation of going out to buy biscuits and invariably touching things and putting them into their mouth.
Maintain proper hand hygiene practices in the kitchen
Proper hand hygiene involves regular hand washing. So, wash your hand with soap and running water before and after cooking. Wash your hands after coughing, sneezing or blowing your nose. Wash them after touching raw food or disposing waste. Likewise, after using the toilet, cleaning work surfaces, and touching money, wash your hands!
Stock up on food
As has earlier been mentioned, if this disease is not brought under control soon, we might face a certain level of confinement. How prepared are you for this? Nigerian business men and women find every reason to hike prices of commodities. Start early to stock your store with needed supplies. If you have rice, beans and yams, how about crayfish, stock cubes, vegetable oil, and salt? If you have constant power supply, stock up on perishable items and get possible substitutes as well.
In conclusion, take charge of your kitchen and your family’s wellbeing. Stay safe.
Community and Public Health Nutrition
Food Safety Authority of Ireland
Featured image source: Think For Home
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