I have taken on board all of the lists my GP and Ob have given me, but I do take them with a pinch of salt. I already eat a restricted diet as i dont eat any colours, flavours, preservatives etc and try to only eat organic fruit and veg. A lot of what is on the lists I dont eat due to reasons other than listeria, for example deli meat is full of preservatives, most prepared salads are covered in dressing thats full of colours, flavours, hydrogenated oil, msg, preservatives. Sushi and soft cheese, although i love them and usually eat them, i have avoided the whole pregnancy. But geez avoiding mushroom because its not cooked (appeared on one of my lists) is taking it too far.
While I respect that there is a very dangerous risk attached to eating these so called 'no-no foods' I feel that if you eat a very good diet before getting pregnant and make sensible choices you should be at very low risk of getting sick or it making the baby sick - thats just my opinion.
Thanks for all the info. Very interesting.
I've never heard the mushroom thing though!!
I don't consider Feta a soft cheese. I eat it often.
Is cold chicken okay if you cooked it yourself the night before?
e.g. this is something I have regularly, not sure if I can continue now that I'm pregnant (first pregnancy). I cut up chicken breasts into pieces, strips & marinate them during the day in a bit of pesto. Then cook them (stir/pan fry) for dinner and have them hot with salad. I usually make enough that there is leftover chicken, so I take it in a salad (freshly made the next morning) to work and eat it for lunch and I have feta in the salad!). But the chicken is obviously cold, not heated, in that scenario. Is that okay? Sorry, I just don't know. It's my first pregnancy - don't see the ob for weeks and haven't seen my GP yet as this is all through my IVF clinic. They haven't said I shouldn't eat anything.
I find this all a bit OTT, to be honest. Are women in Europe losing babies from listeria left, right & centre? No. I read that the Australian guidelines are by far more restrictive than any other country, for seemingly no good reason.
Last edited by peoniesarepretty; 22-04-2012 at 10:43.
I just ate sensibly, didn't really cut out anything. If I feel it is safe enough to eat while not pregnant, I'll eat it while pregnant. So good use by dates, smells/looks fresh, washed and clean, stored correctly.
That's funny about parsley. My friend at work has four grown up children in their twenties. Each pregnancy she craved parsley she told me and ate loads of it!
I'm friends with a neonatologist. When I was pregnant I asked him about it all.
Women in Europe have an increase rate of complications from EColi, found in deli meat. It causes severe brain damage inutero.
He has looked after babies infected with Listeria, and recommends women follow the guidelines.
When I was pregnant, there was 2 recalls of food with suspected contamination of listeria. I ate deli meat on pizza i cooked myself, I didn't eat prepared food in a fridge -that included sushi, sandwiches and salads. I slipped up once or twice, by accident. But I believe that you need to make the decision based on what you can live with. If my girls were infected with listeria or another preventable infection, I would never be able to forgive myself. And so I don't take the risk. People used to tell me that they ate ham/alcohol/ect and they're babies fine. I think they are trying to justify their own decisions, and they have no investment in your baby.
Last edited by speckled; 22-04-2012 at 11:55.
in regards to Listeria monocytogenes - the bacteria that causes listeriosis in pregnancy is transmitted via contact with infected animals and their faecal material (cattle, pigs, rodents and birds) as consumption of unpasteurized milk/soft cheeses and unwashed vegetables.
Medical Microbiology (2001) p291
70% of the human population have this bacteria in their gut for short periods of time without showing symptoms/disease.
ALL australian milk products are pasteurized. so tasmanian brie is fine to eat as are any australian milk products. Yes you might be happier eating it pre packaged rather than from the deli.
Listeriosis is very different from just getting gastro/food poisoning which just makes you sick (throw up/diarrhoea).
What amazes me is people confusing a tummy bug with listeria. Listeria is extremely rare! 11 people in the WHOLE UK had it during pregnancy in 1990. And that halved from the previous year when they included French cheese in the not eat list. You are more likely to get nutritional deficiencies than listeria.
Yes it makes sense not to eat food sitting around for ages - pregnant or not. Yes dont eat food that you are suspect as to its prep. But you would avoid dodgy eating joints even if you werent pregnant.
The mushorooms thing makes sense to me, they're a fungi grown in moist humid conditions and grown in animal manure, so yes uncooked it may be wise to avoid them. If you choose to eat them uncooked, remove stalks, peel them and wash well.
Home cooked chicken eaten within 24 hours whether cold or hot should be totally fine so long as correct handling and storage is followed.
My mum worked in a nursing home and the elderly were not given salads due to listeria risk.
Listeria probably won't affect the pregnant mother much or at all if she's healthy. It does cross the placenta where the baby must fight the infection with its own (non existent) immune system. If there is no tests carried out on a still born or miscarried baby you would probably never realise why it died.
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