"You never know what you're going to expose someone to."
Jennifer Wolf, an OU micro-biology student is home for Christmas. She says thorough hand-washing is how her family stays healthy while preparing holiday meals.
"...because when a lot of people gather together you get, from a lot of different places, you're exposed to a lot of different pathogens."
"Especially during the holidays, you have grandma and grandpa over. You have the grandkids over sometimes. And people in those age groups tend to be more immune-compromised."
Carter County health department public health specialist, Zach Collins, says following food preparation safety tips is for everyone's safety.
"One of the main causes of food-born illnesses is cross-contamination. So you want to make sure that between making the turkey and the stuffing, you wash your hands."
Experts recommend washing all produce thoroughly and Collins also reminds people to be sure all meats are fully cooked by using a food thermometer.
And as for desserts, leave the testing until after it comes out of the oven.
"Try not to lick the bowl when making cake-batter. Especially this time of year, people try to do that and it's a really quick way to expose yourself to maybe, Salmonella."
For more safety tips on prepping holiday meals visit: