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Food Poisoning from Reheated Rice

Food poisoning is something we’ve all probably experienced and don’t want to go through again. Now, the internet has a new strategy for avoiding it: never eat reheated rice.

What is Reheated Rice Syndrome?

Reheated rice syndrome is a type of food poisoning caused by a bacteria called Bacillus Cereus, or B. cereus. B. cereus is a spore-forming microorganism that can survive the heat of microwaving. It grows best between 39 degrees Fahrenheit (4 degrees Celsius) and 118 degrees Fahrenheit (48 degrees Celsius).

How to Avoid Reheated Rice Syndrome

  • Cook your rice properly.
  • Don’t let it sit out on the counter for more than two hours.
  • Cool your rice quickly by putting it in the refrigerator directly or shortly after it is cooked.
  • Make your rice more acidic by adding rice wine vinegar.

How Serious is Food Poisoning from B. Cereus?

B. cereus food poisoning can cause vomiting or diarrhea. It’s uncommon, but pregnant people, the very young and very old, and people who are immune-compromised are more vulnerable to B. cereus poisoning.

What to Do if You Get Sick

If you do get sick from reheated rice, drink lots of water and you’ll likely be fine.


While reheated rice syndrome is a real thing, it’s important to remember that it’s very uncommon. By taking a few simple steps, you can easily avoid it.