Antibiotic Resistance

Antibiotic resistance is defined as when an organism that was once susceptible to antibiotic is no longer killed or its growth suspended by that antibiotic. Therefore, when an antibiotic is no longer effective at killing or slowing the growth of a bacteria, that bacteria is termed resistant to that antibiotic. Resistance varies from species to species, with some like Staphylococcal aureus developing resistance quite quickly to new antibiotics, while penicillin remains the drug of choice to treat Strep throat and Syphilus despite 60 years of use. Top scientists are still trying to figure out exactly how and why resistance develops, but we know that sometimes it is an accidental mutation and sometimes it is by transfer from one organism to another. What we do know, is that increased exposure to antibiotics increases risk of resistance developing.

When it comes to meat safety, meat from animals that have received or not received antibiotics are both equally safe to consumer, because animal antibiotics require a withdrawal from the antibiotic a certain amount of time prior to slaughter so the antibiotic may clear the animal’s system. But for those who are concerned, many meat companies offer a “raised without antibiotics” or an organic option in the meat case. Either way, any bacteria, whether antibiotic resistant or not, are killed through proper cooking of the meat. You should always check doneness with a meat thermometer to ensure it has been cooked to the proper temperature.

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