I told you I would have more time this week! After franticly deciding that last night was the best time to go get all of our birth center supplies and pack them in a duffel bag (I hope this will be the last time I buy Depends for the next 40 years…), I started reading my “Happy Baby, Organic Guide to Baby’s First 24 Months” book that I got in the mail, written by Robert Sears, the same guy who wrote the Vaccine Book I also plan on reading.
With chapters like, “Really Homemade Baby Food: Babies, Breast Milk, and Bottle Feeding”, “Still Eating for Two: What Mama Eats, Baby Eats”, I can already tell that 90% of the book is not devoted to theoretical guilt trips about how the FDA sucks. It’s focused on practical tips for helping a mom limit the amount of toxins, pesticides and other chemicals that make their way into a baby’s system.
Plus, the book has different suggestions for different kinds of moms– there’s the “pale green” suggestion, for people ready for just a few changes, “a little greener” for those ready for more, and then “deepest shade of green” for moms willing to turn their lives upside down. Yes, there are simple changes I didn’t think about, like the fact that a cardboard egg container is easily recyclable– a styrofoam one is not.
But the first chapter did deal with some pretty weighty facts that are a cause for concern. It’s a risk one has to be especially careful about with babies in particular, because all of these toxins are stored in fatty tissue, and babies have a lot more of that than adults.
I found the part about autism interesting, especially considering it’s drastically on the rise and no one knows what causes it. People are looking for someone/something to blame, so what information is known is important.
“We suspect that it’s not genes alone that causes the condition. A growing field of study is focusing on possible environmental triggers that may increase a child’s risk of developing autism. Studies have found that when pregnant women live or work very close to areas that have been sprayed with certain pesticides, especially during the first trimester, their children have an increased risk of autism….researchers don’t know if environmental triggers may only contribute to the condition if a child is exposed at a particularly susceptible age of development or if perhaps it only affects children who already have a genetic tendency towards the disease.”
The part about mercury and vaccines is one of the hot topics of the hour. Don’t believe me? Just try approaching any parent who is/isn’t vaccinating their kid and see how defensive they get.
“One substance that is being investigated as a potential environmental trigger for autism is mercury. Though studies haven’t determined the way mercury might trigger autism, researchers have shown that some autistic kids seem to metabolize mercury (and other metals) differently than kids who do not have autism. Parents and health advocates have expressed concern that the mercury-containing vaccine preservative Thimerosal may be a trigger that causes autism, although to date no cause-and-effect relationship has been proven. Regardless, the preservative was removed from vaccines in the year 2002….Mercury itself still remains on the list of potential environmental triggers, though…The main source of mercury exposures in babies, children and Mamas is from dietary sources. When mercury is released into the environment as a by-product of industrial processes, it ends up in our oceans, rivers and lakes and can accumulate in fish.”
What drives me nuts, however, is how parents can get so hyped up about “BPAs” in bottles, but not recognize the Parabens in their own drugstore shampoo. They are on the same level of toxicity, people! Perhaps it makes parents feel comfortable to harshly condemn big ticket issues, like vaccines and BPAs and formula, and then ignore the other just as important changes, such as processed food and carcinogens in our cosmetics.
So, I guess this leaves my “all or nothing” personality in somewhat of a quandary. I’m already working on finding the middle ground in more things, because I can already see that perfectionist tendencies when parenting lead one place– to the nearest cliff or bridge, whichever is more likely to put an end to the craziness.
But it does annoy me, because if one is going to get hyped up about something, then voluntarily choose to blindly ignore other things, it just seems like flat out hypocrisy. If these chemicals in our food really are having the effect that scientists (who aren’t on the FDA’s payroll) are saying, isn’t it way more important for me to spend the extra time cooking organic food, rather than spending it on having an organized closet? Which one is Gregory going to better off for– chemical free food, or that his clothes were color-coded (I LOVE COLOR-CODING CLOSETS!)? Likewise, isn’t the best use of our money what goes into our bodies? Seriously, how is that not of the utmost importance? We’re not sleeping in it, touching it, we’re eating it, giving it direct access to our body. Forget the vaccines that we’re injecting a few times a year– what about the poisons we’re eating everyday? I don’t mean to get too intense about this, but that’s what going through a section on logic in a Trivium course will do to you.
Did you know:
Almost 70% of the antiobiotics used in the US are being given to farm animals. We now have bacteria that is so resistent to any known treatment, children are dying from the ground beef they are eating from the supermarket.
European governments have banned the import of meat from the US and Canada due to the use of hormones.
In one particular study, the children who ate conventional fruits and vegetables over three days had nearly nine times more pesticide metabolites present in their urine than the children who ate organically during the same period. What’s more troubling is that the pesticide levels in the conventional group exceeded the safe guidelines set by the EPA.
Arguments about how organic food is “too expensive” just don’t work for me, because we find lots of less important ways to spend money. Anyone have any other thoughts for a struggling all-or-nothing soon to be mom?