Is refreezing defrosted products bad for you?

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Is refreezing defrosted products bad for you?

The defrosted product can only be refrozen if previously cooked. IS it is possible to defrost, cook and refreeze a product; while it is absolutely not correct to defrost and refreeze without the product having been cooked.

The issue is delicate and opinions are often conflicting. Let's be clear: it is possible to defrost, cook and refreeze a product; while it is absolutely not correct to defrost and refreeze without the product having been cooked. The defrosted product must not be frozen again without being cooked, because there is a risk of increasing the risk of contamination by bacteria or viruses that were originally present in the raw food. Freezing food at -18 degrees causes an arrest of development microbial, but it does not eliminate bacteria or viruses. With thawing, the bacteria present can regain their vitality and, if time and temperature conditions allow it, they can multiply exponentially enough to reach quantities that are harmful to health . With cooking, most of the microorganisms that may be present are inactivated. A cooked food prepared with defrosted raw materials can then be frozen again. Frozen or industrially frozen foods should be defrosted following the instructions indicated on the label. At home, it is recommended to defrost food in the refrigerator, in the microwave (leave a space of about 5 cm between the food and the walls in order to allow the heat to circulate) or even in a water bath, changing the water every 30 minutes if you want a faster process. On the other hand, it is not advisable to defrost foods directly in water (due to the possible loss of nutrients), nor to leave them at room temperature outside the refrigerator, due to the risk of contamination and bacterial growth.
In conclusion, by following these few basic rules, we will be able to consume healthier and safer foods.

1. Orefice L, Di Candia M, Ciccaglioni G, Scalfaro C. Preventive behaviors towards foodborne diseases. Rome: Higher Institute of Health; 2000. (ISTISAN reports 00/19)

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