I love cheese. Like seriously it might be part of my cellular make up. Of course, I know that pregnant women can’t eat soft cheeses (unless they are pasteurized), but the question that I had for Google (after a minor freak out after a blue cheese packed lunch) was when should I stop eating unpasteurized cheese? Google had no answer for me, so I had to do multi-layered researched to find the answer. Luckily, I went to college for two different degrees so I know how to do that.
(Disclaimer #1: I am in the midst of my LP , so I am not confirmed pregnant. However, knowledge is power right? It’s best to know for later and try to educate others.)
(Disclaimer #2: I’m still not a doctor. Please talk to your doctor before you decide to take my advice.)
Back to cheese. Soft cheese may potentially contain listeria bacteria which may be passed to an unborn baby via the placenta. Listeriosis can cause miscarriage, stillbirth, and premature delivery. Scary stuff right? Did you see where I wrote placenta? From weeks 1-4 the follicle is still hanging out with your fertilized egg and taking care of it. About week 4 the placenta takes over. Here is a basic overview of placenta formation.
I’m currently in what the TTC circle like to call TWW (or two week wait). The TWW is the time from ovulation to a woman’s next period. Obviously, if your period comes at the end of your luteal phase (LP), you’re not pregnant. However, if your LP is normally 13 days and your continues on to day 14, you’re probably pregnant and should take a test. These 14 days are within the first two weeks of pregnancy since conception usually occurs within 24 hours of ovulation. At this point there is still no placenta, so there is nothing that the listeria could penetrate. Back to the cheese then, so IF I am pregnant, I am not even two weeks pregnant, and I’m sure it’s okay to have eaten that bleu cheese. But I’ll have to give it up sooner or later.
Of course, if you’re terrified of listeriosis, you can stop eating these kinds of cheeses the minute you start TTC. I’ll lay off them for the time being, and we’ll see how the the next 5 or so days go (as I still don’t know how long my LP is). Meanwhile, I feel better knowing that I’ve not harmed any potential future baby.