Unhygienic Food and The Rise of Typhoid


Drug Resistant Typhoid is on the rise and unhygienic food and water is to blame for it. And though basic hygiene practices are being encouraged by doctors, little is being done to govern the kind of food that is being prepared in restaurants and by food vendors.

Most food vendors who sell their products out on the streets of Pakistan pay absolutely no attention to the quality of ingredients. Therefore it isn’t hard to believe that they use contaminated water for preparing the food and washing their fruits, vegetables and dishes.

Death Tolls and Hospital Cases

The rate at which Typhoid is spreading in Pakistan, mainly Sindh is alarming to say the least. Regular anti-biotics do not work against them anymore. The drug resistant typhoid has left many dead, doctors estimate the death toll to be more than a dozen. Countless others have been hospitalized. All in all 8000 cases of Typhoid have been reported in Sindh alone.

“In most cases, the patients do not respond to third-generation cephalosporins, which were the drugs of choice before the outbreak of XDR typhoid in Sindh.” said a doctor practicing in a leading hospital in Karachi. He said that majority of the XDR typhoid patients are children who contracted the disease from their schools, where unchlorinated water is supplied by the institutions’ administrations, or by eating contaminated unhygienic food sold by pushcart vendors, who use sewage-mixed tap water to prepare their products.

Consumption of unhygienic food is a big problem, especially for the working class who have no other option during the workday but to buy food from dhabbas and stalls on the street. Food authorities, though somewhat active in sealing high end restaurants, pay no attention to the disgusting conditions of these small food vendors and roadside eateries. Sewage water, sub-par ingredients and filthy food preparation is nothing but a recipe for disaster, or rather typhoid and other infections of the gut.

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