You've long blamed your sex life for those painful urinary tract infections, but you also might need to blame your chicken.
It turns out, eating E. coli-contaminated chicken can cause UTIs, according to a study published this week in the journal Emerging Infectious Diseases.
In the study, scientists tested 320 samples of beef, pork, and chicken for the nasty strain of E. coli bacteria that's usually responsible for UTIs (from transfer from the anal region to the urethra). They discovered that the E. coli strains from chicken are genetically similar to those that cause human UTIs. Uh oh.
Reduce Your Risk The studyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s researchers blame improper food handling for food-borne UTIs, so you can minimize your chances of developing an E. coli infection by following these food-safety guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:
Other ways to prevent UTIs:
- Wash your hands. Clean your hands thoroughly (at least 25 seconds!) after using the bathroom and before food preparation.
- Cook meats thoroughly. Use a meat thermometer to ensure chicken is cooked to an internal temperature of at least 165 degrees
- Prevent cross contamination. Be sure to thoroughly wash your hands, counters, cutting boards, and utensils after they come in contact with raw meat.
- Avoid douching or using feminine hygiene sprays
- Clean your delicate areas frequently, especially before and after sex
- Urinate before and after sex
- Wipe from front to back after using the bathroom