Arrivals & Departures Dining tips: Thai food for thought

Photo of Grace Millimaci

International visitors to Thailand spend about 20 per cent of their travel budget on food. So the country’s tourism authority has created a list of tips to make dining out safe and enjoyable.

Consider street food hygiene and choose stalls with lots of local customers, because they will know the safest. 

More customers also means a higher turnover of perishable produce, so food isn’t left sitting around. 

“It also doesn’t hurt to give plates and utensils a quick wipe with a tissue before eating — as most locals do,” Tourism Authority of Thailand says. 

“Stay away from uncooked dishes, such as poached seafood or raw seafood.” 

And avoid extremely spicy food that can cause discomfort. 

TAT warns that ingredients in many Thai dishes contain laxative properties; for example tamarind, fresh coconut, ginger and turmeric. 

Beware of MSG, which TAT says has been blamed for headaches, heart palpitations, chest pain and nausea. 

(Top image: Thailand's som tam (papaya salad) has laxative properties. Picture: Tourism Authority of Thailand)

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