We enjoy eating steak, and a lot of people feel the same way. Steak is a delectable food because of its juiciness, taste, and softness. However, everyone has a different preference for their ideal steak. This comprises the flavor, appearance, and firmness of the object.
You can cook a steak either rare, medium, or well-done. While all three of these are delicious, we found that opinions on the health benefits of medium steak, particularly concerning food poisoning, have varied. Can a medium-rare steak make you sick?
No, a medium steak will most likely not give you food poisoning. This is because medium steak is cooked at a temperature that eliminates the different bacteria that cause food poisoning.
When Food Poisoning Occurs
Food poisoning occurs when the food an individual consumes is contaminated. Food poisoning is caused by pathogens such as bacteria, parasites, and toxins. Bacteria are the most common cause of food poisoning.
These pathogens are often found in animal products such as raw meat, eggs, cheese, seafood, and vegetables contaminated by manure, etc. To get rid of these bacteria in your food, it is required that the food be exposed to high heat via cooking.
The vicinity where the food is cooked should also be properly cleaned and sanitized. This way, the pathogens will be off and will not spread to other food items and equipment. Prominent among the bacteria causing food poisoning are salmonella, E. coli, Listeria, etc.
These bacteria have different food sources where they have a high chance of survival and others where they do not.
Raw Meat And Food Poisoning
Since raw meat is a common animal product, there is a great risk that it will become infected by these bacteria. This is why it is important to properly cook raw meat to remove harmful bacteria and make it safe for consumption. The topic of the ideal, healthy steak has been debated for a very long time.
While there have been discussions about the healthiest and tastiest ways to cook steak, it has been determined that this decision is solely based on personal preference.
However, a more recent study has shown that a certain level of cooking steak can be regarded as the best and healthiest way to cook and consume steak. To fully understand this, we will be discussing the different levels of cooking steak.
Rare steak is the most similar to raw meat. It is the least cooked among the three levels of steak doneness, as it is cooked at a temperature of 125 degrees F. It is incredibly tender, almost as tender as raw meat, and commonly has a faint char on the exterior.
Since the rare steak is undercooked, it is normal to see some color and traces of blood. This blood present in rare steak gives it an intense red color on the interior.
Consuming Medium Steak Safely
A medium steak requires a temperature of 145 F. It is not well done even though it is cooked longer than a rare steak. It provides you with the ideal flavor because it is soft and supple. The light tint of pink on the interior and the burnt brown exterior of the medium steak help to identify it. It has the proper flavor and is easy to chew.
The well-done steak is properly cooked and is sometimes referred to as the “most-cooked”. It is free of any red or light pink color on the inside, instead, it is identified by its toughness.
Amongst the three levels of preparing steak, it has been identified that medium steak is the best level of preparing steak. Rare meat, because it is not cooked on too much heat, tends to still contain pathogens that may lead to food poisoning.
The Benefits Of Cooking And Eating Medium Steak
A well-done steak, on the other hand, can be tough and overcooked. However, medium steak has a lot of benefits. They are stated below:
Steak prepared at a medium temperature provides the ideal level of tenderness that you need. A steak can become tough and chewy if it is overcooked or excessively soft if it is undercooked, which is practically the same as eating raw meat.
Long-term cooking of your steak does not make it mushy; rather, it causes the collagen found in the muscle fibers to compress, giving it a rubber-like texture. Steak gets the ideal tenderness when cooked at medium heat.
Cooking steak at a medium temperature preserves the nutrients in meat. It has been found that medium steak has a high level of vitamins A and B6, and it also contains some minerals such as iron. All of these are beneficial to health as they help in building muscles and skin.
Unlike an undercooked steak, steak cooked at a medium temperature of about 145 degrees is free of pathogens causing food poisoning. Cooking at this high temperature will get rid of the harmful pathogens that are present in raw meat. This makes medium steak safe for consumption.
4. It’s Delicious
Cooking your steak at a medium temperature helps in preserving and retain its juiciness. The flavor of a steak begins to reduce when it is left to cook for a long time. This is why medium steak seems to be more delicious than all other levels of prepared steak.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Long After Eating Rare Meat Can I Get Sick?
Between 12 and 72 hours. The bacteria commonly found in raw meat are salmonella and E. coli, among others. However, these two will require an incubation period of between 12 to 72 hours before you begin to notice their symptoms in your body.
Can A Cooked Steak Give You Food Poisoning?
No, you can’t get food poisoning from eating cooked steak. The process of cooking the steak exposes the bacteria to heat, which will eliminate them. If you experience food poisoning symptoms after eating cooked steak, you may have eaten a rare steak or bad meat.
Can Rare Steak Upset Your Stomach?
Yes, a rare steak can upset your stomach. Rare steak is not properly exposed to enough heat, hence the bacteria present can still cause food poisoning and give you stomach upset.
Medium-rare steak is the ideal and healthy level of enjoyment for steak. Eating rare steak increases your tendency to get food poisoning.
While eating well-done steak can be tough and chewy, you also do not get to enjoy the taste.
However, medium steak gives you the right taste and tenderness and is free from a pathogen that can cause food poisoning. It is advised that you ensure your steak is cooked at 145 degrees F before it is eaten.