Food Poisoning in Italy

Traveler advisories and reported cases of food poisoning and foodborne illness in Italy.

Have you fallen ill from food or drink, had food poisoning in Italy, or know the details of another traveler who has? Please submit information about what was consumed, where, or what others should avoid consuming.

True food poisoning occurs when a person ingests a contaminating chemical or a natural toxin, while most cases of foodborne illness are caused by a variety of foodborne pathogenic bacteria, viruses, or parasites that contaminate food. Such contamination usually arises from improper handling, preparation, or food storage.

Symptoms typically begin several hours to several days after ingestion and can include one or more of the following: nausea, abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhea, fever, headache, or fatigue. In most cases the body is able to permanently recover after a short period of acute discomfort and illness. However, foodborne illness can result in permanent health problems or even death, especially in babies, young children, pregnant women (and their fetuses), elderly people, sick people and others with weak immune systems.

It's typically in the best interest of a business to keep their customers healthy, but is there a particular restaurant or market in Italy that you know of which consistently has problems with health and hygiene? Are there any food or drink items that travelers should exercise extreme caution with while visiting Italy?

Further reading about foodborne illness

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December 22nd, 2009

My husband and I arrived in Italy on December 21st. We went out, and ate at a nice looking Italian restaurant near the Savoy Hotel in the Business District. I ordered oxtail stew and my husband ordered steak. We had vegetables as a side dish. The restaurant's name is Tempio di Bacco Ristorante on 00187 Roma-Via Lombardia, 36/38. That night, both my husband and I experienced severe food poisoning. Right now, my husband's diarrhea is still going on after 16 hours. My vomitting and diarrhea has stopped after I emptied out everything in my system. We haven't eaten anything since last night. We both feel weak and dehydrated. I just want to go back home to the United States. My advice to you is that you need to watch out what you eat abroad. You can get food poisoning from an expensive restaurant as well. Being sick on a holiday is the last thing you want.

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