Your best tips for raw food safety post transplant.

Posted by jolinda @jolinda, Sat, Aug 3 4:15pm

Does anyone have good guidelines for eating raw food post transplant. I am specifically interested if anyone remembers the things you were taught about raw fruits and veggies. As an example I was told it is ok to eat prewashed lettuce if you rewash it or that fruit with bumpy skin, like cantaloupe can't be washed well enough to avoid contaminating the fruit when cutting through it.

I do know to wash everything but never was told about cantaloupe. We do wash it with a fruit and vegetables brush.

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@danab

I do know to wash everything but never was told about cantaloupe. We do wash it with a fruit and vegetables brush.

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I didn’t hear about the cantaloupe either. I thought they also said scrubbing and veggie washes weren’t necessary if you rinsed long enough under the water. Guess I should dig out my materials.

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@cmael

I didn’t hear about the cantaloupe either. I thought they also said scrubbing and veggie washes weren’t necessary if you rinsed long enough under the water. Guess I should dig out my materials.

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I do remember they did mention that soap wasn't needed but I did still wash my avocados with soap before cutting them when there was an increased risk from an outbreak. I wish we could re-watch all of the info online as a refresher.

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I found it! I found the answer in my Nutritional Guidelines Mayo Patient Education Booklet.
Here is what it says: "Wash fruits and vegetables – including pre-washed items and those with skins and rinds that are not eaten. Rinse everything under running water. If the item has firm skin, rub to loosen any dirt and pesticide as you rinse it."

I also found this statement on another packet of information in my take home packet – Food Safety for Immunocompromised Persons): "Wash all raw fruits and vegetables before eating. This includes anything with a skin or rind such as cantaloupes, watermelon, lemons, oranges, grapes, tomatoes, bananas, etc.
Clean under cold running water: lettuce, cabbage, or other raw salad fixings. Cold tap water is fine……..(avoid eating bean and alfalfa sprouts).

This information was given to me in 2009. @jolinda, that is a good about a refresher.

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Thank you, @rosemary! I found out at my 4 month checkup the reason not to use any fruit and veggie cleaner is because it may contain grapefruit juice.

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@flagal22

Thank you, @rosemary! I found out at my 4 month checkup the reason not to use any fruit and veggie cleaner is because it may contain grapefruit juice.

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@flagal22, That is so interesting! I had read that we should not use bleach because it might alter the taste. But I would never have thought of the hidden grapefruit juice! Thank you, because we know that we need to avoid grapefruit because it interferes with our meds.

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I have a question – What does anyone do about fresh berries?
I painfully avoid them, and choose the frozen ones. What do you do?

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@rosemarya

I have a question – What does anyone do about fresh berries?
I painfully avoid them, and choose the frozen ones. What do you do?

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@rosemarya I also have avoided berries for the same reason. I have slowly tried other fruits but am nervous about them too.

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@rosemarya

I have a question – What does anyone do about fresh berries?
I painfully avoid them, and choose the frozen ones. What do you do?

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@rosemarya @flagal22 I eat fresh berries every day, generally blueberries in my yogurt or oatmeal in the morning and strawberries in my salad at lunch. Sometimes blackberries and raspberries too. I was really wary of eating strawberries for a while after my transplant but then I heard about this vinegar wash and have been doing that. So far, so good.

I do a white vinegar soak and rinse. The vinegar kills anything on the berries, which also keeps them fresh longer because it kills any spores on them so they do not get mildew or mold on them. You can google vinegar rinse for berries and find the quantity of vinegar to water and how long to soak them for but I just pour it in and leave them while I do other things, and then do multiple rinses to make sure there is no vinegar taste left.

Raspberries are a bit delicate for this so I do not do them much.

I just thoroughly wash other fruits.
JK

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@jk the vinegar wash sounds like a great way to wash berries. I will try it! Thank you!

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@contentandwell

@rosemarya @flagal22 I eat fresh berries every day, generally blueberries in my yogurt or oatmeal in the morning and strawberries in my salad at lunch. Sometimes blackberries and raspberries too. I was really wary of eating strawberries for a while after my transplant but then I heard about this vinegar wash and have been doing that. So far, so good.

I do a white vinegar soak and rinse. The vinegar kills anything on the berries, which also keeps them fresh longer because it kills any spores on them so they do not get mildew or mold on them. You can google vinegar rinse for berries and find the quantity of vinegar to water and how long to soak them for but I just pour it in and leave them while I do other things, and then do multiple rinses to make sure there is no vinegar taste left.

Raspberries are a bit delicate for this so I do not do them much.

I just thoroughly wash other fruits.
JK

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Hello, my husband received his new lung exactly 3 months ago at the Mayo Clinic. We may be going home tomorrow. Yeah! We had our last appointmenti with the infectious disease doctor yesterday and were told the vinegar method was not necessary at all. Who recommended you this method? Or where did you read about it? We are trying to follow evidence- evidence-based best practices; otherwise it can get overwhelming. Thanks

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@genocurt

Hello, my husband received his new lung exactly 3 months ago at the Mayo Clinic. We may be going home tomorrow. Yeah! We had our last appointmenti with the infectious disease doctor yesterday and were told the vinegar method was not necessary at all. Who recommended you this method? Or where did you read about it? We are trying to follow evidence- evidence-based best practices; otherwise it can get overwhelming. Thanks

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@genocurt I actually read it in regard to making the berries last longer since the spores get killed by the vinegar. The really do last longer when I do that too.
I just figured if that killed off the spores it probably also gets rid of other things lurking on the berries. Maybe it’s not necessary, but it can’t hurt and if it keeps the berries fresh for longer it’s a win-win.
JK

Liked by flagal22

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@genocurt

Hello, my husband received his new lung exactly 3 months ago at the Mayo Clinic. We may be going home tomorrow. Yeah! We had our last appointmenti with the infectious disease doctor yesterday and were told the vinegar method was not necessary at all. Who recommended you this method? Or where did you read about it? We are trying to follow evidence- evidence-based best practices; otherwise it can get overwhelming. Thanks

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@genocurt Congrats on the successful transplant. Great news!
Can you clarify the statement by the infectious disease doc please… can we eat berries because I thought they were off limits like @rosemarya suggested. Or are you saying they are not safe even if washed in vinegar?

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@jolinda

@genocurt Congrats on the successful transplant. Great news!
Can you clarify the statement by the infectious disease doc please… can we eat berries because I thought they were off limits like @rosemarya suggested. Or are you saying they are not safe even if washed in vinegar?

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@jolinda @genocurt I don’t think I was ever told to not eat raw strawberries but now I’m going to check! I’ve been eating that salad – greens, chicken, and strawberries— for lunch just about every day for over a year. I used to put crumbled goat cheese in too but now I’m lactose intolerant. I will be very upset if I have to give up my delicious lunch. It’s the best.
JK

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@jolinda

@genocurt Congrats on the successful transplant. Great news!
Can you clarify the statement by the infectious disease doc please… can we eat berries because I thought they were off limits like @rosemarya suggested. Or are you saying they are not safe even if washed in vinegar?

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I have submitted a question to MGH on their portal about berries, and I checked this site:
https://www.fda.gov/media/83755/download
It simply says to make sure fruits are well washed, which now that I think about it is what I believe I was told after my transplant, along with not eating any fruits that show any indication of being spoiled.
I will post when I get a response from my transplant team. This being a food question may have to go to the dietician.
JK

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