Deli Meat Avoidance?

QUESTION

Dear Midwife,
In what meats is Listeria a problem? Is it all the sandwich meats like you get at Subway? Are those all to be avoided? Is it the processed meats that you buy to make your own sandwich from the pre-packaged section?

Please help clear up my meat confusion. Thank you

ANSWER

Usually the Health Department will notify the public if there is a listeria outbreak in your area.

The biggest meat risk is meat that has been sitting out for a time. Prepackaged deli meat that is used promptly is not usually a problem, nor is Subway, since their inventory turns over so quickly.

I'd be more cautious about the deli meat that they slice for you.

-- Cynthia, CNM. PhD.

Cynthia Flynn

Cynthia Flynn, CNM. PhD, is the General Director of the Family Health and Birth Center which provides prenatal, birth, postnatal, gynecological and primary health care to underserved women and their families in Washington, D.C. Recently Cynthia served as Associate Professor of Nursing at Seattle University. There she not only taught, but remained in full scope clinical midwifery practice at Valley Medical Center where she cared for pregnant and birthing women, and practices well-woman gynecology, family planning, and treatment of sexually transmitted diseases.

Cynthia founded Columbia Women's Clinic and Birth Center, where she took care of pregnant women and infants up to two weeks of age and attended both birth center and hospital births. Before Cynthia earned her CNM, she worked as a registered nurse in labor and delivery and postpartum and is a certified Doula and Doula trainer.