Food Safety in China

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Food safety is a major concern in China. How can people optimize their health? As a family medicine doctor in China for 5 years, I've often discussed food safety on my blog at http://myhealthbeijing.com. Here, I offer my insights and tips on how to live a healthy lifestyle.

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Food Safety in China

  1. 1. Food Safety In ChinaRichard Saint Cyr MDGroup Director of Clinical Marketing & Communications, UFHFamily Medicine Doctor – Beijing United Family HospitalBlog: myhealthbeijing.comWeibo: weibo.com/daniudaifu
  2. 2. About Me Family Medicine doctor From USA Here for 5 years My clinic: 北京和睦家医院
  3. 3. My Blog: Myhealthbeijing.com
  4. 4. Weibo.com/daniudaifu
  5. 5. Synopsis1. AT HOME2. AT THE MARKET3. AT A RESTAURANT
  6. 6. Food Safety: The Main Problems Bacteria • Infections • Food poisoning Chemicals & Pesticides • Cause cancer? • Endocrine problems • Allergic reactions
  7. 7. Your Goals Minimize your exposure to toxins Control what & where you eat Control what & where you buy Live SUPER-healthy • Antioxidant lifestyle • Don’t smoke • Exercise • Stay slim
  8. 8. DON’T SMOKE Smoking is China’s #1 public health problem – NOT food safety
  9. 9. Part 1: At Home
  10. 10. Water SafetyBig Water jugs? Maybe not• 50% counterfeit water• Bacteria in water• Cheap plastic leaches into it• Good brand? Beijing Kangtai Gaoke Co. 
  11. 11. Install A Water Filter Tap water – add a filter • Aquasana highly rated (many others)
  12. 12. Milk Scandal #1: Formula Melamine in infant formula • 300,000 sick, a dozen die  Kidney failures • MULTIPLE recurrences since then! What to do?
  13. 13. #1 Choice: Breastfeeding
  14. 14. Best Dairy Brands? Local: Green Yard Wondermilk Imported? $$
  15. 15. Make Your Own Soy Milk!
  16. 16. What About Seafood?
  17. 17. Fatty Fish = Great Health
  18. 18. Everyone should eat fatty fish at least twice a week!
  19. 19. I’m Nervous About Seafood… Most rivers polluted Farm-raised: chemicals, runoff Oceans: polluted Antibiotic use (my skin allergies!) What body of water (or fishery) in China is famously clean?
  20. 20. I Mostly Trust… Muslim/Dalian seafood restaurants Japanese sushi restaurants • The popular famous ones • Top: flown from Tokyo Imported frozen fish • @ hypermarkets Supplements (fish oil) – imported Sardines in a can -- imported
  21. 21. Where To Get Omega-3 in China? SAFE salmon, sardines, tuna… • @Hypermarkets Supplements • Iherb.com • Costco… • Imported @ hypermarket
  22. 22. Iherb.com: Good Source Of Health Goods (USA)
  23. 23. Food Handling Is A Major Issue!http://www.who.int/foodsafety/consumer/5keys/en/index.html
  24. 24. c
  25. 25. Wash Your Produce! Store brands Citrus Salt Vinegar Chlorine
  26. 26. Basic Tips If it can be peeled, peel it! • Less nutrients Leafy greens -- SOAK
  27. 27. Part 2: At The Market
  28. 28. Organics --Yes/No? Yes! • Traceability = accountability • Less pesticides/chemicals • More oversight by govt/NGO • NOT automatically more nutritious • Yes, many labels are not true organic…
  29. 29. Organics: Do You Know Your Labels?
  30. 30. iPhone App: “Dirty Dozen” & “Clean 15”http://www.ewg.org/foodnews/summary/
  31. 31. Where To Buy? Hypermarkets!
  32. 32. Why Hypermarkets? Experience Reputation International standards Cold-chain trucks/storage Supply chains Organic suppliers
  33. 33. My Favorite: Metro Frozen fish Organic produce Clean, quiet
  34. 34. Part 3: At A Restaurant
  35. 35. Don’t Share Chopsticks! Loaded with bacteria, viruses… Carry your own (metal) for lunch Wooden – poor washing
  36. 36. Buy Collapsible Chopsticks
  37. 37. Takeaway Boxes: BEWARE!
  38. 38. NEVER Store Food in Takeaway Boxes! Only use safe plastics
  39. 39. Cling Wrap: Beware Cling wrap: never microwave on food Only use PE brands
  40. 40. Glass Is Best
  41. 41. Gutter Oil 10% of all restaurants in China? • Smaller shops • Cafeterias • Street vendors • You get what you pay for…
  42. 42. Street Vendors: Buyer Beware Where is toilet with soap & water to wash hands? How is meat preserved cold? Where is oil from, and how new? Where is meat from? Fake lamb?
  43. 43. Great Website: www.cfs.gov.hk
  44. 44. The Bottom Line You have control over what you eat Minimize your toxins Live super-healthy Exercise Don’t smoke
  45. 45. Thank You www.myhealthbeijing.com Weibo.com/daniudaifu Richard.saintcyr@ufh.com.cnUnited Family HealthcareAddress: #2 Jiangtai Lu, Chaoyang District,Beijing 100015 P.R.C.Tel: +86 (10) 5927 7000 Fax: +86 (10) 5927 720024 Hour Emergency Hotline: (010) 5927 7120www.ufh.com.cn 46

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