More than 200 people in Texas and at least three states have come down with a stomach bug that could be linked to foodborne illness.
The Centers for Disease Control says the cyclospora infection causing diarrhea and other flu-like symptoms has been reported in Iowa, Nebraska, Texas, and Wisconsin. The CDC said eight people have been hospitalized and the reported illnesses occurred from mid-June to early July.
The Food and Drug Administration is investigating the cyclospora infections, which are most often found in tropical or subtropical countries and have been linked to imported fresh produce in the past.
Dr. Rodrigo Hasbun, an Infectious Disease specialist at UTHealth Medical School told Local 2, "Raspberries have been implicated because they're very difficult to wash lettuce and basil. I don't know what the source of this outbreak is, but CDC is looking into it."
The illness is usually spread when people ingest foods or water contaminated with feces.
Dr. Hasbun explained, "Stool gets into the vegetables and then you don't wash the vegetables very well and then you eat the vegetables that are contaminated with stool."
The CDC said it isn't yet clear whether the cases from all of the states are linked.
Until they pinpoint the cause, experts say there's no need to avoid produce, just wash it thoroughly.
Dr. Hasbun added, "Washing your hands washing the produce very well is very important to prevent transmission."