Can wagyu beef cause diarrhea?
In this brief guide, we will answer the question, “can wagyu beef cause diarrhea,” and discuss if diarrhea after eating wagyu beef is a sign of food poisoning and what are other possible causes of diarrhea.
Can wagyu beef cause diarrhea?
Yes, wagyu beef can cause diarrhea. The presence of contamination by pathogenic microorganisms in wagyu beef is one of the possible causes of the diarrheal effect. However, diarrhea can be caused by other factors (1).
Food poisoning and other possible factors related to the consumption of wagyu beef that causes diarrhea will be discussed in the following sections of this article.
Is diarrhea after eating wagyu beef a possible sign of food poisoning?
Yes, diarrhea after eating wagyu beef is a possible sign of food poisoning (1,6).
Diarrhea is one of the possible symptoms of foodborne illnesses caused by the ingestion of contaminated foods. Pathogens originating from the animal can contaminate the carcass and spread to the cut or raw meat during slaughter or other stages of the processing (3,6).
Bacteria such as Salmonella spp. and Escherichia coli, E. Coli and Staphylococcus aureus, as well as viruses may be present in meat and cause diarrhea to consumers when meat is not cooked or safely handled during cooking and storing.
What are other possible causes of diarrhea after eating wagyu beef?
The other possible causes of diarrhea after ingesting wagyu beef besides food poisoning include malabsorption and inflammatory bowel disease.
Wagyu beef is characterized by a higher amount of lipids in its composition. The carcasses of Wagyu steers at 26 months of age comprise 47.7% muscle, 41.7% fat, and 10.6% bone, which is the highest level of fat compared with the carcasses of Belgian Blue cattle, Holstein and German Angus (4).
The possible diseases can cause a diarrhea after the ingestion of food containing fats, are the following (2,5):
- Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
- Celiac disease
- Carbohydrate malabsorption (e.g., lactose, fructose)
- Nonceliac gluten sensitivity
- Bile acid malabsorption
- Crohn disease
- Pancreatic exocrine insufficiency
- Colorectal cancer
- Parasitic infection
Is diarrhea after eating wagyu beef a possible sign of parasite infection?
Yes, diarrhea after eating wagyu beef is a possible sign of parasite infection. It is possible that diarrhea can be caused by the infection by parasites in the intestines, such as protozoa and worms.
In this case, the parasite was previously present in the individual’s intestines and was not ingested within the wagyu beef.
One example is the invasive parasitic infection caused by Entamoeba. Giardia is another example, which is a waterborne protozoa that causes infection and leads to malabsorptive diarrhea.
Helminth infections, such as Trichuris trichiura (i.e., whipworm) and Ascaris lumbricoides (i.e., roundworm), can also cause diarrhea (2,5).
How should you handle Wagyu Beef safely and prevent food poisoning?
Wagyu beef should be properly handled and cooked in order to prevent food poisoning. To ensure a safe consumption, you should (3):
- Refrigerate beef at 40 °F (4.4 °C) and use within 3 to 5 days, or freeze it (0°F or -18°C) for up to 9 months. Avoid temperature fluctuations
- If freezing longer than 2 months, overwrap these packages with airtight heavy-duty foil, plastic wrap, or freezer paper or place the package inside a plastic bag
- When preparing, wash hands, cutting boards, dishes, utensils, and countertops with soap and hot water before and after the preparation
- Do not use the same utensils to prepare meat and other food items
- Cook all raw beef steaks and roasts to a minimum internal temperature of 145 °F (62.8 °C) as measured with a food thermometer before removing meat from the heat source
- For safety and quality, allow meat to rest for at least three minutes before consuming the meat
- Never brown or partially cook beef to refrigerate and finish cooking later because any bacteria present wouldn’t have been destroyed
What to do if you have diarrhea after eating wagyu beef?
If you experience an episode of diarrhea after eating wagyu beef, you should look for medical assistance. As mentioned earlier in this article, there are several different causes for diarrhea and the treatment requires a precise diagnosis (2).
However, in all cases, the ingestion of liquids in large amounts is recommended to prevent dehydration.
Patients should be encouraged to drink diluted fruit juice, Pedialyte or Gatorade and to foods that are lower in fiber to make stool more firm. Foods that are recommended are bananas, toast, oatmeal, white rice, applesauce and soup/broth.
In this brief guide, we have addressed the question, “can wagyu beef cause diarrhea,” and discussed other questions related to the subject, such as is diarrhea after eating wagyu beef is a sign of food poisoning and how to safely prepare wagyu beef to reduce the risks of food poisoning.
- Semrad, Carol E. Approach to the patient with diarrhea and malabsorption. Goldman’s cecil medicine, 2012, 895.
- Nemeth, Valerie, and Nicholas Pfleghaar. Diarrhea. StatPearls [Internet]. StatPearls Publishing, 2021.
- Beef from farm to table. United States Department of Agriculture.
- Gotoh, Takafumi, et al. The Japanese Wagyu beef industry: Current situation and future prospects—A review. Asian-Australasian j anim sci, 2018, 31, 933.
- Burgers, Kristina, Briana Lindberg, and Zachary J. Bevis. Chronic diarrhea in adults: evaluation and differential diagnosis. Am Family Phys, 2020, 101, 472-480.
- Soepranianondo, Koesnoto, and Dhandy Koesoemo Wardhana. Analysis of bacterial contamination and antibiotic residue of beef meat from city slaughterhouses in East Java Province, Indonesia. Veter world, 2019, 12, 243.