I spent some time playing around on google trends recently, and in addition to the disturbing upward trend of people googling the term diahhrea (it has doubled since Google started keeping track - doesn’t that say something about our eating habits?), I discovered that the graph for “food poisoning” is actually quite interesting:
Notice that every year, the number of people searching for “food poisoning” in the United States is low in the summer and early fall, and consistently peaks from December through March. What is going on? I have two theories:
- There are more issues with food poisoning during the school year - hundreds and thousands of children are all eating food from the same source
- Our food comes from further away (and often abroad) in the winter - where its safety may be less scrutinized and there is a greater chance of spoilage during transport
What do you guys think? Have any suggestions for how I can test out these theories? Are there other possible explanations I’m missing? Leave your own thoughts in the comments of this post.