Food Poisoning Incubation Period
Our gut is a great breeding ground for bacteria and viruses. Our gut has bacteria that aid in digestion. It is also where most food and nutrients are broken down for absorption. When invasive microorganisms enter the gut in small amounts, they don’t immediately cause harm. They incubate and grow before they cause signs and symptoms of food poisoning.
Following this, food poisoning incubation periods greatly vary. Different bacteria and viruses can cause an onset of symptoms hours after ingestion while some can even take days and weeks. Symptoms and severity of food poisoning may also vary depending on what microorganism contaminated the food. Other bacteria and viruses may cause fever and stomach cramps while others cause diarrhea and vomiting.
Common Foodborne Illnesses and Their Food Poisoning Incubation Periods
It takes 12 hrs or a few days before the onset of symptoms. This is usually found in saltwater fish and can cause coughing and abdominal pain.
Bacillus cereus food poisoning
The food poisoning incubation period is around 10-16 hrs before the onset of symptoms. This is usually found in many foods including meat, soups, sauces, and other meals that have sat out too long. It cause diarrhea and vomiting for 1-2 days.
It takes 2 to 5 days before the onset of symptoms. Usually found in meat contaminated with animal feces, unpasteurized milk, contaminated water and raw or undercooked meat and poultry. Can cause fever and diarrhea for 2-10 days
It takes 3-30 days in infants and 18-36 hrs in children and adults before the onset of symptoms. This can be found in honey, improperly canned food, potato baked in aluminum foil, fermented fish. Botulism is a medical emergency. It can cause respiratory failure and death if not treated.
Perfringens food poisoning
It takes 8-16 hrs before the onset of symptoms. This is usually found in beef, poultry, and meat-based sauces left for a long time in steam tables or room temperature. It can cause diarrhea and stomach cramps.