Recently there has been a lot of talk about BIRD FLU in the newspapers and on the TV, so what exactly is Bird Flu and how does it affect us?
In the simplest terms, bird flu is much like the common flu that we are all familiar with, although it has specifically adapted itself to bird hosts. Despite this, bird flu can affect other animals that feed off birds: Avian Influenza has killed millions of birds across the globe in the last five years, and 243 people have died from it (out of the 385 known cases of infection) when caught from birds. Ducks and chickens also catch this Avian Influenza which is problematic for humans as these are the two most commonly consumed poultry meats in the food market. Researchers have reported that a new strain of Bird Flu has broken out near Nigeria, and that this could prove detrimental to human health statistics if not treated properly. If you are interested in further reading on the Nigerian strain of bird flu then you should have a look at the original article found at the following URL: http://www.iol.co.za/index.php?set_id=1&click_id=3014&art_id=nw20080812064910327C576990
Bird flu is not to be taken lightly, but there are a few easy ways to take precautions for you and your family members.
1. find out whether your local food market has their poultry checked often for signs of bird flu. These birds seldom make their way into the food market but it doesn't help to make 'double sure'.
2. choose organic bird products that have been carefully tended to and checked before leaving the farm and checked again before entering the supplier's store.
3. if an area has been demarcated as 'infected' you should be duly notified. When traveling through this area, such as certain areas in Asia during the last flu outbreak, it is recommended that you be careful to avoid contact with birds and poultry and only eat very carefully and thoroughly cooked poultry.
4. don't fall into the bird flu hype: while it pays to be cautious you should be careful to avoid falling prey to unnecessary hysteria. Officials will always do all that they can to prevent an outbreak of bird flu.