Listeriosis is a fairly common illness. It is especially common among pregnant women, are 20 times more likely to be affected by Listeriosis than other adults – though it is also common among adults with low immune systems and the elderly. When Listeriosis has an affect on pregnant women, it will typically only seem like a slight cold or the flu. Some of the symptoms that characterize Listeriosis include a fever, muscle aches, nausea or diarrhea and possibly a headache, stiff neck or confusion. The amount of symptoms that you will experience due to Listeriosis while you are pregnant mainly depends on whether or not the illness affects your nervous system.
While it may not seem very severe, the truth in the matter is that Listeriosis is a very serious illness. The main reason is because it can have a huge affect on your newborn baby. Listeriosis can cause premature births, stillborn births and an infection within the newborn.
Luckily, there are a number of things that can be done to prevent Listeriosis from affecting you during pregnancy. Here, we will take a much closer look at some of these things in order to help you prevent Listeriosis.
Avoid Unpasteurized Milk
If you have read the book Plain Truth by Jodi Picoult, or if you have seen the movie, then you may be familiar with this cause of Listeriosis. It is important to make sure that you avoid milk or other dairy products which are unpasteurized. This is known to be one of the leading causes of Listeriosis.
Avoid Undercooked Meat
Another one of the causes of Listeriosis is undercooked meat. It is important to avoid eating raw or red meat while you are pregnant. Keep in mind that it is also important for you to be careful when you eat cold cut lunch meats or various pre-cooked meats, such as hot dogs. It is recommended for pregnant women to avoid eating meats from delis. If you do choose to eat hot dogs or lunch meats, it is a good idea to make sure that you re-cook them thoroughly in order to prevent Listeriosis from affecting you during pregnancy.
Avoid Unwashed Vegetables
While you are pregnant, it is important to wash your vegetables at all times. It is also important to keep in mind that you should avoid putting vegetables in situations where they may become contaminated by the bacteria from meat (e.g. don’t put your lettuce on the counter where you just had raw beef laying.)
Unfortunately, the lack of awareness about Listeriosis is the main reason that many pregnant women do become affected. By taking these simple preventative steps, you will be so much more likely to decrease your chances of becoming affected by Listeriosis.