Throw Out These Expired Foods!
By Sara Butler
If you think you can protect you and your family from food poisoning with the sniff test, think again. There are certain foods that truly are expired when the date on the package says so. Don’t play Russian roulette with your health; instead, go through your kitchen today and throw away these foods if they’re past their expiration date.
Is it Really an Expiration Date?
First things first -- identify if the date on the package really means it’s time to throw it out. Some dates aren’t expiration dates, rather they might be:
- Best if used by – This date indicates when a food should be eaten in order to ensure quality and flavor
- Sell-by – This date indicates how long the product can be displayed in the store
- Use-by – This date indicates the peak quality of the product according to the manufacturer
These dates don’t tell you if a food is safe to eat or not. That information can only be deduced from the expiration date on the food's packaging.
Foods to Throw Out
You can’t always tell if something is safe to eat just by its look or its smell. That’s why it’s important to follow the expiration dates on foods to help keep you and your family healthy. When you see these foods expired, make sure to toss them out immediately:
- Egg substitutes – Regular eggs can be kept in the refrigerator quite safely for up to five weeks, but egg substitutes are a different story. After opening, you only have three to five days to use them. Unopened cartons can last for about 10 days.
- Soft cheese – Hard cheeses have an extraordinary shelf life of up to six months simply because bacteria have a harder time setting up shop in them. But soft cheeses such as goat cheese, cream cheese, and ricotta do not have this luxury. Toss them once they reach their expiration date or one week after opening.
- Condiments – While it may seem like some sauces and spreads could survive a nuclear blast, they’re susceptible to bacteria once opened. If you notice discoloration, strange smells, or water floating on the top of your condiments, then throw them out no matter if their expiration date has been reached.
Don’t take chances with your health. If you’re unsure about the expiration date of something, it’s best to throw it out!
To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Knightdale, N.C.