Beware! Fuku elegusi (animal lungs) & fura da nunu can infect you with bovine tuberculosis – Nigerian Doctor

Nigerian doctor based in the UK @DrOlufunmilayo has warned the general public to be extra vigilant in consuming cow lungs popularly known as Fuku elegusi in Yoruba and fura da nono, a popular Fulani drink because of the risk of getting infected with bovine tuberculosis – a common disease in cow, goats and sheep. He raised this public awareness because most meats and milk products are not duly inspected in Nigeria before the are distributed to the public for consumption….

Our Favorite Online Doctor as he is fondly called shared this vital information on his Twitter handle…..Read his tweets. .

VERY URGENT: IF you ever see animal meat/lungs that looks like this, DO NOT BUY it.

Those nodules on the meat shows that the animal had tuberculosis and possibly died from it. Eating it makes it possible for you to get tuberculosis and it can kill you.

Fuku elegusi
Fuku elegusi/animal lungs infected with tuberculosis

Stay away from meat like that.

Never buy it. Never eat it.

Never touch it.

It has “Bovine Tuberculosis” (which is the tuberculosis found in animals) – and it can be spread to human beings by drinking infected milk of cows, being around infected animals or eating such meat.

What is Bovine TB:

As stated earlier, it is similar to human TB – only that this time it is found in animals.

Can it be passed to humans?

Yes. You can get it through drinking infected milk- so be careful of buying roadside unregulated milk, yoghurt, kunu and milk products.

Cow lungs and tuberculosis
Fuku elegusi with arrows pointing to TB noodles

Whenever you want to buy milk, yoghurt or milk products- ALWAYS make sure you buy from a reputable supermarket or food store. NEVER buy roadside milk, fura da nunu, yoghurt or any milk products sold in wheelbarrow or packaged in suspicious Eva bottles with no clear labels.

Fura da nunu
A Fulani girl selling unpasteurized fura da nunu

Stay away.

You can also get tuberculosis from eating infected meat. Infected meat looks like these images.


Usually, such meat will look cheap and it may be tempting to buy- but IT WILL KILL you. Whenever you see meat that looks like this- don’t buy, don’t touch, don’t eat.

Bovine tuberculosis
See the disseminated noodles. They are tired foci

I did NOT say buy the meat and cut out those nodules/the part that looks infected. That’s NOT what I said.

I said STAY AWAY from the meat completely. Don’t be a foolish glutton.

Don’t gamble with your life.

Buy ANOTHER meat elsewhere.

If you don’t eat that one, you won’t die.

The biggest risk with eating infected animal meat with bovine TB is that it can give you TB Tuberculosis. You will have profound weight loss, night sweats, persistent cough, difficulty breathing and eventually death- if nothing is done as quickly as possible. This is no joke.

In 2018 based on the most recent Global Tuberculosis Report an estimated 142,000 new cases of zoonotic animal tuberculosis was identified, and 12,500 people died due to the disease.

You must understand the vast majority of these deaths occur in underdeveloped places like Africa.

So what can you do to protect yourself?

Never drink raw milk.

Never eat raw meat/never eat partially cooked meat.

Never buy milk or animal products from Chijioke in traffic, from Ahmed pushing wheelbarrow or from Tunde selling inside bus.

Never touch random animals at farms.

Check your meat well before buying.

Cook meat very well AFTER buying.

Buy milk, yoghurt and dairy products ONLY from trusted sources and reputable places.

Avoid dirty animal meat stores with blood all over the place.

If an animal or animal product looks unhealthy, DO NOT BUY IT.

In serious countries like the UK, all animal meat and milk products that gets to the stores is completely inspected and regulated.

You can be very assured that whatever you are buying is totally safe for consumption.

They have Food Safety Agencies that do a thorough job always.

But we don’t have such in Nigeria and many African countries. And even if we do, they are mostly useless and ineffective. So you have to look out for yourself and ensure your own safety.

I wish things were different and we can trust the meat we are sold- but that’s not the case.

So yeah, On a final note: Before you buy meat, check it.

Don’t buy if it has those whitish lumps.

Buy another meat- and make sure you always wash and cook your meat properly.

Cut down on eating at lowclass roadside eateries that you can’t guarantee their hygiene standards.

As for suya, try find a good spot you are sure the seller is Godfearing and uses good meat.

Otherwise I don’t know what advise you give honestly.

The fears you have about restaurants, eateries and suya spots are very genuine and I agree it’s difficult to find trustworthy ones.

Anyway, I hope you have learnt something today- and I hope you help us pass across the message to everyone else.

Thanks for reading.

Dr Olufunmilayo


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