If meat must be kept at low or high temperatures in order to avoid growth of harmful bacteria, why is it safe to eat cold meat? Shouldn’t the temperature of our mouths bring the meat to a lukewarm temperature, thereby promoting the growth of harmful bacteria?

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If meat must be kept at low or high temperatures in order to avoid growth of harmful bacteria, why is it safe to eat cold meat? Shouldn’t the temperature of our mouths bring the meat to a lukewarm temperature, thereby promoting the growth of harmful bacteria?

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When you put a piece of meat in your mouth it’s not in there long enough for bacteria to form.

The risk is from bring meat to medium temperature (40°–140°F), and *leaving* it there for a while. It’ll warm enough for bacteria to grow, and produce toxins. If you *eat* it, the bacteria won’t have time for that before they have to worry about surviving your stomach acid.

Sure, but it’s only at that temperature for like 30 seconds before it starts being digested. The point is to avoid letting food sit at a dangerous temperature for a substantial amounts of time that allow the bacterial population to increase to harmful levels.

It’s not safe unless the meat has previously been heated. The process of heating the meat is what kills bacteria and other harmful pathogens. If left cool long enough, meat that has already been heated will be exposed to new bacteria which will start using it as a food source and reproducing on it. Often, it is the “poop” of the bacteria that is toxic to humans. There is not enough time while the meat is in our mouthes for bacteria to reproduce and cause us harm.

It isn’t safe to eat uncooked chicken.

If you’re saving leftover dinner for another time, it’s best to let it cool down on its own before putting it in your fridge, or else the outside will cool faster than the inside and that will cause problems.

Because you don’t hold it in your mouth for several hours before swallowing it. It takes a few hours of sitting out at room temperature for meat to become unsafe to eat, when you put it in your mouth you usually chew it up and swallow it within a few seconds (or minutes if it is really chewy). After that point unless the bacteria on the meat had already multiplied enough to produce harmful toxins in the meat, then your stomach acid and immune system can usually handle it without developing severe symptoms.

It takes a couple hours for bacteria to grow on meat, not the 30 seconds for you to chew and swallow a bite!

Even under ideal circumstances, the generation time of fast growing bacteria is like 20 minutes. You’re not going to grow bacteria during the time it takes you to chew your food and swallow it, then it gets dunked in stomach acid and digested by enzymes.

Not enough time for it to happen unless you are komodo dragon that keeps old rotting meat stuck in your teeth forever .

Tbf, it’s not entirely safe to eat meat, exactly because it promotes the fast growth of potentially harmful bacteria (also known as: it quickly rots) while it’s inside you.

Carnivore animals have shorter, quicker digestive system than herbivores exactly as a way to minimize that risk. The least time the eaten flesh stays inside their body, the better for them. The body wants all that out asap. (So, it’s not just that plants take, on average, longer to digest.)