What is the difference between botulism and salmonella?

Not Medical Advice: Botulism is a serious illness caused by a nerve toxin made by the bacterium, Clostridium botulinum (C. botulinum). There are three types of botulism: food, wound and infant botulism.

Foodborne botulism is often home-canned foods that are low in acid, such as green beans, corn and beets. A common source of the illness in Alaska is fermented seafood. However, the disease has also occurred from chili peppers, foil-wrapped baked potatoes and oil infused with garlic.

Wound botulism is possibly caused by an injury you might not notice, they can multiply and produce toxin. Wound botulism has increased in recent decades in people who inject hēroin, which can contain spores of the bacteria.

Babies get infant botulism after consuming spores of the bacteria, which then grow and multiply in their intestinal tracts and make toxins. The source of infant botulism may be honey, but it's more likely to be exposure to soil contaminated with the bacteria.

Salmonella on the other hand, is a bacteria and a common cause of foodborne illness, sometimes called "food poisoning."

It can contaminate more than poultry and eggs. It sneaks its way into many foods — ground beef, pork, tomatoes, sprouts—even peanut butter. Learn what you can do to make your food safer to eat.

Roughly 76 million cases of food poisoning and 5,000 related deaths occur in the United States each year. The elderly, the very young, pregnant women, and people with otherwise weakened immune systems tend to be most vulnerable.

You’re not totally helpless, though. Check out some tips that may help you avoid foodborne illnesses at Health.com.

Tags: salmonellabotulismbacteriadisease