HOLIDAYMAKERS heading to Turkey this summer have been warned of a surge in cases of food poisoning.
Hundreds of salmonella infections in Britain since the start of 2023 have been linked to travel in the country, health officials have said.
A total of five clusters, which occurred as recently as July 19, involving 241 cases have been confirmed.
The UK Health Security Agency (UKSHA) said the majority of sufferers had come from all-inclusive resorts in the Antalya region, known for its yacht-dotted coastline and crystal blue waters.
“While salmonella infections usually resolve with self-care at home, they can be more serious in young children, the elderly and immunocompromised individuals,” the health body warned.
It offered health advice to Brits heading to the region, including only eating recently prepared and thoroughly cooked food that is served piping hot.
It also warned travellers to only eat fruit they had peeled themselves, and pasteurised dairy produce such as yoghurts, milk and cheese.
It said it is important that people thoroughly wash their hands before eating and after using the toilet to avoid spread.
UKHSA is liaising with the travel industry body, ABTA, Turkish public health authorities and other international public health partners to inform investigations of these clusters.
Officials are racing to find the source of the infection which has not yet been discovered, it added.
Prof Paul Wigley of animal microbial ecosystems from the University of Liverpool told the Sun it’s likely the bug is coming from eggs.
“The type of Salmonella involved is salmonella enteritidis, which is often associated with eggs.
“It is possible that hotels are sourcing eggs from a single supplier or buying in pre-made food that may contain raw or lightly cooked eggs such as deserts, sauces or savoury baked goods.”
However, “many other sources are possible,” he added.
In April, the Sun reported more than 25 tourists were left bedbound with suspected food poisoning at a five star Tui hotel in Antalya.
Sufferers ranged from a 22-month-old baby to a woman in her 60s.
What are the symptoms of food poisoining?
The first symptoms of food poisoning normally come on about one or two hours after eating contaminated food
The main symptoms include:
- Tummy cramps
- Loss of appetite
- Nausea/feeling sick
- Diarrhoea (which may contain blood or mucus)
- Lack of energy/weakness
- High temperature
- Aching muscles
How long does food poisoning last?
Food poisoning can be a nasty illness, but the good news is most cases will pass without treatment.
It may take a few days for you to recover, and the NHS recommends resting up at home and drinking plenty of water.
When you do feel up to eating, it’s best to stick to bland foods like toast, crackers, bananas and rice until you recover.
Vulnerable people, i.e. those who are elderly or have another health condition, are advised to take rehydration solutions.
You should see your GP if your symptoms are so severe that you can’t keep down water.