McDonald's Salads Being Investigated After More Than 100 People Infected by Parasite

The Illinois and Iowa departments of public health are investigating McDonald’s after people reported feeling sick after eating their salads.

According to the Iowa Department of Public Health, they’ve seen an increase in cyclosporiasis, a parasitic intestinal infection that was also recently linked to Del Monte Vegetables. So far, Iowa has identified 15 people who ate McDonald’s salads in late June to early July prior to getting ill, and warns that anyone experiencing stomach-bug-like symptoms should see a doctor.

“Anyone who ate these salads since the middle of June and who developed diarrhea, especially watery diarrhea and fatigue, should see their health care provider and get tested for Cyclospora to ensure an accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment,” Dr. Patricia Quinlisk said in the statement on the IDPH website.

  • RELATED: What Is Cyclospora? What You Need to Know About the Parasite Linked to Del Monte Vegetables

So far, the Illinois Department of Public Health has seen 90 cases of cyclosporiasis, with ¼ of the infected people reporting to have eaten a McDonald’s salad in the days before they began experiencing symptoms.

“Although a link has been made to salads sold in McDonald’s restaurants in some Illinois cases, public health officials continue to investigate other sources,” Illinois Public Health Department Director Nirav D. Shah said in a statement. “If you ate a salad from McDonald’s since mid-May and developed diarrhea and fatigue, contact a health care provider about testing and treatment.”

Both health departments ensure that the fast food chain is cooperating with their investigations and complying with regulations from the Center for Disease Control and the Food and Drug Administration.

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“Out of an abundance of caution, we decided to voluntarily stop selling salads at impacted restaurants until we can switch to another lettuce blend supplier,” McDonald’s told PEOPLE in a statement. “We are in the process of removing existing salad blend from identified restaurants and distribution centers – which includes approximately 3,000 of our U.S. restaurants primarily located in the Midwest.”

“McDonald’s is committed to the highest standards of food safety and quality control,” the burger chain added. “We are closely monitoring this situation and cooperating with state and federal public health authorities as they further investigate.”

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