Some foods that are pretty bad for you, but romaine lettuce never makes that list. However, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has linked an E. coli outbreak to romaine lettuce from Yuma, Arizona. And after one individual in California died from the outbreak, the CDC warns people to steer clear of this lettuce until further notice.
The E. coli outbreak first started in March, and since then there have been 121 cases reported. In fact, this is the largest E. coli outbreak since in over 10 years. But what makes this outbreak particularly bad is that this strain of E. Coli is said to be pretty severe, according to the CDC.
Normal E. coli symptoms include vomiting, diarrhea and cramps. These usually occur about three or four days after an individual has eaten the contaminated food. And after about a week, the person tends to recover.
This outbreak is different, however. Nearly half of the cases have required hospitalizations, and 14 individuals have been diagnosed with a form of kidney failure, known as hemolytic uremic syndrome.
The US Food and Drug Administration is still unsure where this particular strain comes from. However, they have identified a farm in Yuma, Arizona as one potential source, after eight inmates in Alaska were reported sick after eating romaine lettuce from this farm.
For now, the CDC has issued this statement to prevent further E. coli illness: “Do not serve or sell any romaine lettuce from Yuma, Arizona, growing region. This includes whole heads and hearts of romaine, chopped romaine, baby romaine, organic romaine, and salads and salad mixes containing romaine lettuce. Restaurants and retailers should ask their suppliers about the source of their romaine lettuce.”