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The FDA has identified three types of bacteria that cause severe illness and are highly contagious. These 3 types are Salmonella, Shigella, and E.coli.

Salmonella Typhi lives only in humans. People with typhoid fever carry the bacteria in their bloodstream and intestinal tract. Eating only a small amount of these bacteria can make a person sick. The severity of symptoms depends on the health of the person and the amount of bacteria eaten. The bacteria are often in a person’s feces for weeks after symptoms have ended. 

Shigella is found in the feces of humans with the illness. Most illnesses occur when people eat or drink contaminated food or water. Flies can also transfer the bacteria from feces to food. Eating only a small amount of these bacteria can make a person sick. High levels of the bacteria are often in a person’s feces for weeks after symptoms have ended. 

E. coli can be found in the intestines of cattle. It is also found in infected people. The bacteria can contaminate meat during slaughtering. Eating only a small amount of the bacteria can make a person sick. Once eaten, it produces toxins in the intestines, which cause the illness. The bacteria are often in a person’s feces for weeks after symptoms have ended.

The 3 Major Bacteria

  1. Salmonella

  2. Shigella

  3. E. coli