A 20-year-old student died from eating leftover pasta that had been on his kitchen bench for five days.
A 20-year-old student died from eating leftover pasta that had been on his kitchen bench for five days.

Student dies from leftover pasta

A student died after eating leftover pasta that had been left on his kitchen benchtop for five days.

The 20-year-old became sick after eating leftover spaghetti with tomato sauce which had been prepared five days earlier and stored at room temperature.

After becoming violently ill, he went to bed to try and sleep the sickness off, only to be found dead in bed the next morning by his devastated parents.

An autopsy later revealed he'd died suddenly from food poisoning caused by a bacteria called bacillus cereus.

According to the Food Standards Authority, Bacillus cereus is a spore forming bacteria that produces toxins, causing cause vomiting and diarrhoea.

While the student - known only as AJ - experienced both these symptoms, he treated his symptoms as a regular bout of food poisoning, drinking plenty of water and taking no medication.

A 20-year-old student died from eating leftover pasta that had been on his kitchen bench for five days.
A 20-year-old student died from eating leftover pasta that had been on his kitchen bench for five days.

However, the toxins from the bacteria caused his liver to go into failure, killing him as he slept.

His lifeless body was discovered 11 hours later by his "worried" parents who were concerned because he didn't get up for college.

The shocking story has been featured by Dr Bernard, a licensed practitioner who studies and shares bizarre medical cases found around the world on his YouTube channel.

Dr Bernard analysed the case, which originally featured in the US Journal of Clinical Microbiology, explaining the harmful bacteria caused AJ's liver to shut down.

Samples of spoiled pasta and tomato sauce samples were also analysed, with the National Reference Laboratory for Food-borne Outbreak confirming the spaghetti was contaminated with "significant amounts" of the B.cereus - while it was absent in the sauce.

"AJ is an otherwise healthy 20-year-old man," he explains in the video, adding the story was not a "typical" food poisoning case.

The spoiled pasta was contaminated with a harmful bacteria called Bacillus cereus that caused his liver to shut down in his sleep.
The spoiled pasta was contaminated with a harmful bacteria called Bacillus cereus that caused his liver to shut down in his sleep.

"Many people eat pasta, or any other form of noodles, that are leftover for a day or two and they're fine," he said.

"Be careful of food left out for more than a few hours. If the food smells funny, it's always better to be safe than sorry."

Since the video was shared last week, it has received hundreds of comments from shocked viewers.

"That was kinda dumb but not really something you expect to kill you a day later," one person wrote on Reddit.

"I don't know why anyone would leave perishable food in the kitchen for 5 days and think it's okay to still eat it," another added.

Continue the conversation @RebekahScanlan | rebekah.scanlan@news.com.au


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