Q. Which cheeses should I avoid to steer clear of Listeria?

Written by Catherine Saxelby on Friday, 21 March 2014.
Tagged: healthy eating, pregnancy

Q. Which cheeses should I avoid to steer clear of Listeria?


Q. I am pregnant and wonder how do I know which cheeses are okay to eat? Help!

A. Whilst rare, Listeria is a real concern during pregnancy. Listeria (technically Listeria monocytogenes) is a microorganism that may cause an infection called listeriosis due to the consumption of contaminated food.

During pregnancy, it's crucial to avoid eating any suspect food as listeriosis can cause still birth, premature birth or illness in newborns.

High risk foods you should avoid are:

  • Soft cheeses such as brie, camembert and ricotta (they are safe if cooked). Hard cheese, cream cheese and cottage cheese are safe - just make sure you eat them very fresh
  • Pate and sliced processed meats such as ham and salami
  • Takeaway cooked diced chicken such as that used in sandwiches
  • Raw or smoked seafood (canned are safe)
  • Ready prepared salads

The bottom line is to eat all your food as fresh as possible. Buy from places that look clean, have a busy turnover and/or make up things to order (not selling sandwiches that have been made up hours before).

For more information, I can recommend the information on the NSW Health.

Catherine Saxelby

About the Author

Catherine Saxelby has the answers! She is an accredited nutritionist, blogger and award-winning author. Her latest book Nutrition for Life  is a new update on all the things you've read or heard about. Think insects, collagen, vegan eating, Keto dieting, vitamin B12, fast food and cafe culture.  It has plenty of colour pictures and is easy to dip in and out of. Grab your copy NOW!