Should Cheese Carry A Health Warning?

I eat and enjoy most cheeses… but what cheese is safe to give to a toddler… :thinking::zipper_mouth_face: these kids range from 1.5-3 years… :thinking:
so which cheeses need to carry a Health Warning… :upside_down_face::zipper_mouth_face:

Well the last e.coli outbreak was due to contaminated cucumbers I seem to recall, so no food is safe if hygiene standards slip.

(A small anecdote that I find funny…I have been avoiding accepting that I need to change to a new drug, partly because the advice I was given in the UK is that if I transfer I would have to follow the same dietary advice as pregnancy women - no unpasteurised cheeses, raw eggs, pâte etc. It came up again at last appointment with my french rheumatologist, so I said that my problem was that I love unpasteurised cheese. She found it completely hysterical that the mad English should want to deny people the best cheese and other foods! And laughed her way down the corridor to tell her colleagues of this totally crazy and unnecessary advice! )

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I am thinking that perhaps the Adults with these toddlers… did not know that the cheese was made with raw milk… in which case… more foodie education might be an idea… :thinking::blush:

OH prefers his Cantal Cru (or whatever it is called) but, will happily eat the pasteurized version (and everything else)… we are almost spoilt for choice with cheeses… :hugs:

It should for me, I am allergic to the stuff. Thank goodness I’m not allergic to wine otherwise there would be no point in living in France!

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Gosh Dave…

Do you sometimes get tempted and to heck with the consequences…??

I had a friend with bad allergies, but as her quality of life worsened, she would sometimes say… “just a little, Stella, please… it’s been so long… and I do love it… to h*ll with tomorrow…”

It probably should, just for the high fat content, but who cares :grin::grin:

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I don’t get tempted at all. There are actually a few cheeses I can have, although they aren’t cheeses as far as most people are concerned, such as Philadelphia. I can have that in a sandwich but if it is cooked I can’t have it.

Actually, I have once been tempted. I used to go to Pizza Hut and have pizza without cheese but it smelt so nice and I suspected the taste might be better with it I eventually tried a piece with cheese and I was fine! It is the only pizza I can eat which might be worrying for Pizza Hut fans as it makes you think maybe their mozzarella isn’t cheese.

Both my father and brother were the same except my Dad got diabetes in his sixties and from then on craved cheese but only strong blue cheeses. Go figure!

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All my life I’ve had a syndrome where I srart to sweat, tremble and go dizzy and the only thing that restores me to normality is cheese. It’s a bit like diabetic hypo attacks where a glucose drink does the trick, but sugary drinks are no use to me, only chunks of cheddar.

In my late teens I asked a doctor about it and he looked serious and said I should undergo pancreas investigations, but I ignored that and just made sure I always had easy access to emergency mouse-trap, and my pancreas seems happy with that so far.

It’s an enzyme thing, perhaps. Cheese contains lots of aristocratic proteins that demand upper-class enzymes. The stronger the cheese the bluer its blood, it seems.

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All of the foods you mention are prone to contamination by listeria - pregnant women are more prone to listerosis because pregnancy is somewhat immunosuppressive and, while it is a rare infection it can cause serious problems.

Other groups of people who are immunosuppressed are also at increased risk. This includes patients on chemotherapy and there are well documented instances of deaths due to listeria infection while receiving chemo.

For mildly immunosuppressive drugs used in RA such as methotrexate I can find sporadic individual case reports (with a quick google) but I’m not sure that the incidence is very much higher than the general population.

For more powerfully immunosuppressive drugs used in RA such as Infliximab or Etanercept the rate looks to be maybe 10x the rate in the general population - it is discussed in this 2003 paper. Pregnant women are also about 10x as likely to contract listerosis so you might argue that if the advice is valid for that group it is also valid for patients on Infliximab or Etanercept.

Whether all of that sways your decision is, of course, your own business.

However I cannot say that I am impressed by your rheumatologist - you raised a reasonable concern and I would have expected someone who was contemplating supplying an immunosuppressive drug to be aware of the implications. An explanation such as “well, I see they are concerned about infection but I think they are being over-cautious because…”, not hysteria and running down the corridor to let all his/her colleagues know about “ces fous les Anglais” :rage:

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Well I found it funny! In my experience the American advice in this field tends to the alarmist and over-react, the French advice is generally quite laid back and English fall somewhere in between.

Thank you for being concerned enough to look this up, but having been on immunosuppressive drugs for 10 years + and being heavily involved in patient-led education and medical conferences I don’t need advice from Dr Google. I was in fact using this as a stalling tactic, since I have my own reasons not to change drugs, but her reaction amused me.

I’d agree with this general observation - perhaps it is because US doctors are sensitive to the possibility of litigation that they err on the side of caution, however I wonder whether the French "laid back"ness swings too far in the other direction.

Hardly, but as I am not a rheumatologist I thought it prudent to do a bit of fact checking regarding my hunch about the toxicity of rheumatology doses of immunosuppressants (and to be honest about the degree of that fact checking). I have experience of managing toxicity from oncology doses but these are somewhat higher - also methotrexate is not that commonly prescribed in modern chemotherapy regimes. Your post did not suggest to me that you were aware of the reason that the advice is given (apologies if I misread that) so I thought it might be helpful to fill in a bit of detail. I still feel, if your description is accurate regarding your rheumatologist’s response, that it was a little (at least) unprofessional.

I wholeheartedly applaud your involvement in education, both of other patients and the medical profession (I think doctors in all specialities can too easily loose track of the patient perspective).

In terms of treatment then it is for you to discuss with your medical team obviously and I note that you haven’t (as is completely reasonable) mentioned either your current treatment or what new treatment is being suggested so, necessarily, I’m guessing a bit on risk.

However I find your “I don’t need advice from Dr Google” comment somewhat sanctimonious given that it makes assumptions about my background level of knowledge on the subject and consequently not more than a little offensive. Sorry if I, in turn, offend but I am going to speak as I find on this point.


Well maybe you also have experience of having a chronic disease that is poorly understood, and where it is frustratingly common for well meaning people to give advice about how best to manage the disease that is gleaned from Dr Google, articles in the red tops and so on. I intensely dislike the implication behind most of them that if only I did X either I wouldn’t have the disease, or would be miraculously cured. So I react strongly. In your case you obviously have some expertise which wasn’t stated in your first reply, so perhaps not warranted and you have borne the brunt unnecessarily. For that I apologise, but not for calling people out on Dr Google.

My own Doctor, whom I have known and trusted for more than 20 years, has forbidden me to look on Google for my medical things without his express permission :relaxed: :rofl:

On the rare occasion when he has actually advised me to look on Google for more info on a specific medical thingy … I have been pleasantly surprised by the amount of useful information available.

But he still tells me to treat Google like Wikipedia… take it all with a pinch of salt (too much could be hazardous to health :wink:)

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No, I don’t have a chronic disease - unless you count Asperger’s - however I do have a close family member who does so, while I cannot put myself in your shoes I can see that well meaning individuals but with no medical qualifications, who “helpfully” tell you about a treatment that popped up on a Facebook ad, or in the Daily Wail or was given to their aunt Sally could wear a little thin with time.

I do, however, have a little “bug” about the way medics sometimes communicate which I’m afraid your original post triggered.

Sage advice.

Google can be excellent if used intelligently - PubMed can be better for searching for medical papers but equally it can be tricky to get the searches right.

You do need to be able to sort the wheat from the chaff though - and Google sometimes turns up a lot of chaff.