Your best tips for raw food safety post transplant.

Posted by jolinda @jolinda, Aug 3, 2019

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.

@contentandwell

@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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@contentandwell I have been encouraged to eat a lot of fresh fruit and vegetables. Berries included!! Just no grapefruit or pomegranate. I rinse everything in cold water. I do not rinse bananas. I don't eat the peel lol..
Sometimes it doesn't help to become paranoid as you'll miss out on the goodness and health benefits of delicious fruits.

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@contentandwell

@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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I was never told not to eat them (strawberries) either. And I do rinse, rinse, rinse, the strawberries and blueberries. Yummy. It is the fresh raspberries and blackberries that I am concerned with because they are hard to rinse.

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@gaylea1

@contentandwell I have been encouraged to eat a lot of fresh fruit and vegetables. Berries included!! Just no grapefruit or pomegranate. I rinse everything in cold water. I do not rinse bananas. I don't eat the peel lol..
Sometimes it doesn't help to become paranoid as you'll miss out on the goodness and health benefits of delicious fruits.

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@gaylea1 That’s pretty much what I was told also. In fruits that you cut through the skin or rind you should wash them because the knife can cut through and introduce bacteria to the fruit.

Something I don’t think was mentioned to me by my transplant group is to wash the top of cans before you open them. There can be bacteria that will get into the contents. This is especially important if you are not cooking the contents or bringing them to a high temperature. I’ve been doing that for years.
JK

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@rosemarya

I was never told not to eat them (strawberries) either. And I do rinse, rinse, rinse, the strawberries and blueberries. Yummy. It is the fresh raspberries and blackberries that I am concerned with because they are hard to rinse.

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@rosemarya I rarely eat raspberries and blackberries for that reason too. I feel much more confident with the white vinegar wash.
JK

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@contentandwell

@gaylea1 That’s pretty much what I was told also. In fruits that you cut through the skin or rind you should wash them because the knife can cut through and introduce bacteria to the fruit.

Something I don’t think was mentioned to me by my transplant group is to wash the top of cans before you open them. There can be bacteria that will get into the contents. This is especially important if you are not cooking the contents or bringing them to a high temperature. I’ve been doing that for years.
JK

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@contentandwell yes I always wipe tins before opening and I don't drink directly from a can. I use a glass or a straw.

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@rosemarya

I was never told not to eat them (strawberries) either. And I do rinse, rinse, rinse, the strawberries and blueberries. Yummy. It is the fresh raspberries and blackberries that I am concerned with because they are hard to rinse.

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@jolinda I heard back from my transplant team, this was their response:
“Fruit is fine for you to eat at this point. We recommend not eating fresh fruit/veggies only if your WBC level is very low (which yours in continually ok).”

I had included berries in my question. I think you may have misinterpreted something that @rosemarya said since she also was told she could eat them. Always better safe than sorry though.
Enjoy some luscious strawberries. It was sure a relief to me to know that I was not doing something that could be bad for me.
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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Hi Jolinda, during our last meeting with the ID specialist, we were told we could eat any berries SO LONG as we clean them well by a 1-2 minute cold water wash. We specifically asked about using vinegar and she said it was not necessary. I hope this helps.
On another note, we were told by a transplant patient that she makes everyone take their shoes off when they enter her house. Has anyone heard this advice from a transplant team staff? As we said in a previous post, we want to follow evidence-based practices and not hearsay.
Thanks.

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@contentandwell

@jolinda I heard back from my transplant team, this was their response:
“Fruit is fine for you to eat at this point. We recommend not eating fresh fruit/veggies only if your WBC level is very low (which yours in continually ok).”

I had included berries in my question. I think you may have misinterpreted something that @rosemarya said since she also was told she could eat them. Always better safe than sorry though.
Enjoy some luscious strawberries. It was sure a relief to me to know that I was not doing something that could be bad for me.
JK
.

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@contentandwell what is the WBC cut off mine is low a lot and now im curious

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@genocurt

Hi Jolinda, during our last meeting with the ID specialist, we were told we could eat any berries SO LONG as we clean them well by a 1-2 minute cold water wash. We specifically asked about using vinegar and she said it was not necessary. I hope this helps.
On another note, we were told by a transplant patient that she makes everyone take their shoes off when they enter her house. Has anyone heard this advice from a transplant team staff? As we said in a previous post, we want to follow evidence-based practices and not hearsay.
Thanks.

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@genocurt Hi on the subject of taking shoes off. We have done that for years and its interesting that my wife was just reading an article that suggests most bacteria comes in the house on your shoes to include a virius that put me in the hospital recently. Cdiff is its short name. It attacks the bowel and you get major diarrhea for weeks. Mine lasted a full month. The virus can only be killed with bleach and can live on untreated areas like outside dirt for up to 2 years. That part i found out from Mayo. So now besides taking my shoes off i sweep the floor near the doors at least daily.

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Thanks, Danab. We have always taken our shoes off upon entering the house, but for different reasons. Here is information about C. Difficile from the Mayo Clinic. The major source of contamination with C. difficile bacteria is through "feces spread to food, surfaces, and objects when people who are infected don't wash their hands thoroughly". Here is the site: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/c-difficile/symptoms-causes/syc-20351691

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@genocurt

Thanks, Danab. We have always taken our shoes off upon entering the house, but for different reasons. Here is information about C. Difficile from the Mayo Clinic. The major source of contamination with C. difficile bacteria is through "feces spread to food, surfaces, and objects when people who are infected don't wash their hands thoroughly". Here is the site: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/c-difficile/symptoms-causes/syc-20351691

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Yes it always amazes me to see the number of people who don't wash there hands after using the restroom. I always have but i bet at least 50% don't. The main reason was not cdiff for us either. We just like a clean house. Also no footware at all on the carpets but we do have inside sandles for the floors. While in the hospital my room was gown up only and the room was cleaned twice a day with bleach. It was taken very seriously.

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@genocurt

Hi Jolinda, during our last meeting with the ID specialist, we were told we could eat any berries SO LONG as we clean them well by a 1-2 minute cold water wash. We specifically asked about using vinegar and she said it was not necessary. I hope this helps.
On another note, we were told by a transplant patient that she makes everyone take their shoes off when they enter her house. Has anyone heard this advice from a transplant team staff? As we said in a previous post, we want to follow evidence-based practices and not hearsay.
Thanks.

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@genocurt As I said initially, the white vinegar wash was not something the transplant department suggested, but that I learned about later. Whether or not it helps for post-transplant patients I think I will continue doing it. I read it in an article about making berries last longer, the vinegar kills spores and the berries really do last longer before spoiling, so that in itself is a benefit, but it is good to know that just washing them is good enough, which is the same thing my transplant team responded this week when I asked them. It can't hurt.

@danab I went back and looked at my lab reports. This is apparently the range for WBC:
WHITE BLOOD CELL COUNT 3.6 Thousand/uL 3.8 – 10.8 Thousand/uL

As you can see, mine is not quite within range but apparently, it is good enough.
JK

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@contentandwell

@genocurt As I said initially, the white vinegar wash was not something the transplant department suggested, but that I learned about later. Whether or not it helps for post-transplant patients I think I will continue doing it. I read it in an article about making berries last longer, the vinegar kills spores and the berries really do last longer before spoiling, so that in itself is a benefit, but it is good to know that just washing them is good enough, which is the same thing my transplant team responded this week when I asked them. It can't hurt.

@danab I went back and looked at my lab reports. This is apparently the range for WBC:
WHITE BLOOD CELL COUNT 3.6 Thousand/uL 3.8 – 10.8 Thousand/uL

As you can see, mine is not quite within range but apparently, it is good enough.
JK

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@genocurt and @contentandwell
After my transplant I met with a nutritionist several times at Mayo. She personally uses a vinegar/water spray for all her fruits and vegies and she never had a transplant. She considers it safe eating. In the Healing Home at Mayo for six weeks right after my transplant we all used a vinegar and water wash and soak. At home I used the vinegar and water spray for a year and a half and now I simply very carefully wash my fruits, including strawberries and my vegies. I also use a Norvex cloth with anti-biotic silver to wash them as well. One side is rough for the vegies and fruits have a softer cleaning surface. Currently I am 2 1/2 years out from my transplant. Just my story.

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@estrada53

@genocurt and @contentandwell
After my transplant I met with a nutritionist several times at Mayo. She personally uses a vinegar/water spray for all her fruits and vegies and she never had a transplant. She considers it safe eating. In the Healing Home at Mayo for six weeks right after my transplant we all used a vinegar and water wash and soak. At home I used the vinegar and water spray for a year and a half and now I simply very carefully wash my fruits, including strawberries and my vegies. I also use a Norvex cloth with anti-biotic silver to wash them as well. One side is rough for the vegies and fruits have a softer cleaning surface. Currently I am 2 1/2 years out from my transplant. Just my story.

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The cloth is anti- bacterial, anti-biotic. Duh!

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@estrada53

The cloth is anti- bacterial, anti-biotic. Duh!

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@estrada53 Where do you purchase these cloths?

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