Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Toxins in our kids' foods

No shocker here, just more information, especially for moms out there feeding our families. This type of stuff should be criminal, using ingredients that are known to cause issues, especially in our little ones. And to add insult to injury, they make a SAFER product to ship overseas? Right, because evidently they have tougher regulations or subscribe to the "dangerous until proven safe" theory. Why don't we subscribe to that as well? Childhood diabetes, on the rise, childhood obesity, on the rise, childhood arthritis, on the rise, Autism, on the rise, ADHD, on the rise, allergies, on the rise. Clearly we are not doing something right. At what point do we wake up and realize what we let little Johnny put into his body is having a detrimental effect? Does it take the call from the teacher suggesting ADHD? Does it take developing diabetes? Does it take them growing up to have a child with Autism? When do we start leaving the crap on the shelves, understanding WHAT those ingredients are and until we KNOW what they do to us, don't feed it to our kids. What happened to fresh fruit, cut up carrots and broccoli? Nowadays the school "snacks" are cheetos and "peanut butter" crackers. Read the ingredients, get involved, know what you are doing to your kids' bodies. WE make the decisions, WE need to take control and make a positive impact on our kids and the next generation. Did you know that the lovely combo of citric acid and sodium benzoate (when heated) create benzene in the body? Benzene is a carcinogen that is only excreted very, very slowly from the body. See how many products have those two (I will give you a hint, quite a few). This was just one tidbit presented at a DAN! conference, the class? Protecting your child from a toxic world by Dr. Freedenfeld. That's right, WE have to protect our kids. Our FDA will not, the food manufacturers will not. If you assume that a product on the shelf is safe then you need to think again. And how many other ingredients react with other ingredients, trying to do that matrix is overwhelming. If you can't pronounce it, it comes in artificial colors/flavors or you don't know what it does, I challenge you to NOT put it in your child for the next week. And just for fun, keep a log of behaviors. We all need to educate ourselves on these ingredients that are commonplace in this country and what detrimental impact they may be having on your child's health. Our kids are counting on us!

From the Enviroblog

Toxins in Our Kids' Foods: Where is the FDA?
April 4, 2011
Guest Post by Laurie David and Robyn O'Brien, EWG Board Member

Yesterday, in the face of a just- released report by the National Cancer Institute that showed a 9.4% increase in childhood cancer between 1992 and 2007(1), the FDA let moms and dads all across America, down. Instead of making the long overdue move to do something serious about getting rid of toxic food dyes so ubiquitous in our food supply, they instead fell back on those two simple words so often used to stall, delay and deny..."more research." In kitchens across this country, eight dyes, currently being used by manufacturers can be found in everything from packaged macaroni and cheese, breakfast cereal to practically every piece of candy your child has ever put in its mouth. Links are being found to hyperactivity in kids (ADHD), cancer and serious food allergies. (2) But here is the truly crazy thing. Kraft, Coca Cola and Wal-Mart have already removed these artificial food colors and dyes from the same products that they distribute in other countries. They did it in response to consumer demand and an extraordinary study called the Southampton Study. The Southampton Study (3) was unusual in that it tested children on a combination of two ingredients: tartrazine (yellow #5) and sodium benzoate. The study's designers knew that a child very rarely has occasion to ingest just a synthetic color or just a preservative; rather, a child who is gobbling up multicolored candies is probably taking in several colors and at least one preservative. What's amazing is that in the U.K., the federal food safety agency actually funded the Southampton Study that led to even U.S. corporations eliminating synthetic colors and sodium benzoate from their U.K. products. And in response, a whole host of companies, including the U.K. branches of Wal-Mart, Kraft, Coca Cola and the Mars candy company (who make M&Ms), have voluntarily removed artificial colors, the preservative sodium benzoate, and even aspartame from their products. Particularly those marketed to kids. Take a close look at the ingredient list for the product below.

Our American companies had removed these harmful ingredients from their products overseas--but not here! Kraft, Coca Cola and Wal-mart are living proof that it is possible for giant corporations to make and sell kid-friendly, family-friendly, and healthy processed food without necessarily exposing them to a chemical cocktail that might also give them allergic reactions, brain tumors, or leukemia, or the symptoms of ADHD, as the Center for Science in the Public Interest recently highlighted in their report "Rainbow of Risks". No need to go through all the numbers for increased health problems here. You've heard them all and it isn't pretty. For goodness sake, no more research necessary. Lets stop poisoning our own kids. Lets start assuming chemicals are dangerous until proven safe, not the other way around. Is it too much to ask the FDA and the processed food companies for the same value to be placed on the lives of the American kids in their cost-benefit analyses that has been placed on the lives of kids in the UK? Moms, we can create that same change here. And with 51 million moms waking up to the dangers that toxins present to the health of our kids, our numbers are equivalent to the entire population of Spain. Time to get down to business, level the playing field for our kids, and send a message to these companies. Vote with your pocketbook today, this weekend, next month as you grocery shop for your family. Because while the American children only represent 30% of our population, they are 100% of our future. So while the FDA may not value their lives accordingly, we can. Notes: 1. Journal of the National Cancer Institute, March 31, 2011 DOI: 10.1093/jnci/djr141 2. Rainbow of Risks, 3. Southampton Study

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