I believe its pretty much the same advice across Europe (we went to spain earlier this year & my spanish friend told me not to eat any raw salad / veg in restuarants too). PRetty sure a belgian woman has posted on mumsnet before quoting the no salad rule...
It is bizarre tho - I will happily eat a big tasty salad in pizza express when pregnant, or attack the harvester salad bar. However its such a big no-no on the continent. Really hope this no salad rule doesn't spread over to the UK
But hey, its not such a hardship having to live off frites & mayo for a few weeks
yes icravecheese i have friends in france, and also spain, who are told not to eat it under any circumstances whilst pregnant as toxoplasmosis is so common over there... crazy as they will happily have a glass of wine!!
Toxoplasmosis is common in France and Spain? Well, much of the fruit & veg in our supermarkets comes from there and if the OP doesn't bother washing fruit & veg in the UK (I quite often don't either, OP, so that's not a criticism), then eating salads in Belgium shouldn't be an issue.
Seems a bit OTT to me to avoid eating salad on the continent - I don't think hygiene practices in restaurants there are worse than the UK. Eating a washed salad from a restaurant in Belgium (which is made from Spanish tomatoes, for example), shouldn't be any worse than eating a washed salad (made with Spanish tomatoes) in a restaurant in the UK, should it? Or am I missing something?
I think you're right fraktious, because toxo is much more prevalent on the continent they are consequently much more aware of it abroad (in fact, my GP said toxo virtually doesnt exist in the uk food chain in UK produced meat & veg)
However, snowgirl1 has a very good point that hadn't even crossed my mind - spanish tomatoes, foreign lettuce etc, we probably all eat it in UK restaurants yet don't have the no salad rule here, & I can't imagine hygiene in UK establishments is any greater than that in places on the continent.
Who knows! The whole food rules thing is turning into a bloody minefield! Oh to have carried a baby in the 70's when our mums were oblivious to all of this!
I had my daughter in Belgium, and my on/gun was really strict about no salads/ fruit in restaurants as you don't know if they were washed properly, also no 'pink' meat. It was because of toxoplasmosis. Although my blood tests showed I had no natural immunity. I believe some people have natural immunity due to having contracted it previously. Many have minor or no symptoms at all so never realise. But, hey, if you're at all worried, just stick to the chocolate!