Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Could You Be Feeding Your Baby and Family Arsenic With Breakfast?

No parent, or any person for that matter, would knowingly eat a food they knew contained the neurotoxin lead. We all know about the toxic effects of lead on the brain (particularly the developing brain of a fetus and infant/young child). However, 80% of infants in the United States, are eating a staple baby food product that is exposing them to potentially dangerous levels of another neurotoxin : arsenic.

Dr Phillip Landrigan, 
Dean of Global Health and Director of the Children's Environmental Health Center at Mt. Sinai, explained to us ,“Arsenic is a proven human carcinogen, a cancer-causing chemical. It is also a neurotoxin, a chemical that is toxic to the developing brain and nervous system of a young child. ” Landrigan added, “ Both lead and arsenic can cause injuring to the developing brains of children. This injury can result in lowered IQ, shortened attention span and behavioral problems.”

So, what are babies eating that is exposing them to arsenic?

Sunday, December 3, 2017

Christmas Tree Showdown 2017: Natural Trees vs Artificial Trees

I love real Christmas trees.  I love how they smell, how they look and I love the experience of going with my family to pick “the perfect tree”.  It becomes the center of our holiday celebrations, the place where we take family photos every year, around which we host holiday cocktail parties (or, truth be told these days, afternoon playdates)  and, of course, where Santa leaves his presents on Christmas morning.  

Last year, someone asked me if I thought that buying natural Christmas trees was damaging to the environment (cutting down so many trees)  - a valid question.  It also lead  me to thinking about artificial Christmas trees and whether or not they were better for the environment.  Here are my findings.

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Non-Toxic Holiday Shopping Guide: The Good, The Bad and Our Favorite Toys For Kids!


(Scroll down for the full guide!)
For their age, my kids know a lot about avoiding potentially harmful chemicals. We talk about it openly and organically (pun intended!) and I love the fact that they will grow up understanding what to avoid (soft plastics, strong artificial smells etc) and what to seek out (glass, stainless steel, wood etc). A topic that has been a bit tricky to navigate, however, are holiday gifts. They are under the impression that anything Santa would bring - regardless of what it is- would never be toxic to them because, as my then 5 year old said to me once, "Santa wouldn't put lead in my toys mommy, so don't worry"

Their logic makes sense; of course Santa Clause would never put lead or any other potentially harmful chemical in a toy he was making in the North Pole.

But, the sad reality is that sometimes toys that are left under the tree or gifted through other traditions during the holidays too often do contain harmful chemicals. And let's be honest, many of these toys end up in our children's mouths- thus directly exposing our munchkins to these toxins.

Let's take a closer look.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Acetominophens and ADHD: A Very Strong Link

Recent research out of Norway suggests that one of the most common pain relievers,  may have an effect on whether a child develops ADHD.  

The findings might paint part of the picture on why the last decades have seen a substantial increase in ADHD diagnosis; Acetaminophens are  one of the most common drug ingredient,  found in more than 600 different over-the-counter and prescription medicines, including generic and store brand pain relievers, fever reducers, and sleep aids as well as cough, cold, and allergy medicines.  Among them: 

Sunday, November 12, 2017

How To Get Pesticides Off Your Fruit With a Kitchen Staple We All Have in Our Kitchens!

As the temperatures drop we are quickly moving deep into apple season.   Pretty soon your local farmers market will we full of all types of apples- a variety for every taste.   

For your home, when possible, you should always opt for  organic fruits and vegetables - especially for your children- especially if you are pregnant and especially apples since they tend to have high levels of pesticide residues when they are non-organic.

Certain produce absorb more pesticide chemicals than others (see our list of the 'Dirty Dozen and Clean Fifteen ' for a complete list of produce that have more pesticides and should be purchased organic and those that have absorb less pesticides and are safe to eat conventional),  But even for the most well meaning organic eater, there will be some instances when, whether due to budget or because you are away from home  you will have no choice than to eat non organic.

With this in mind, the University of Massachusetts at Amherst,  set out to test
three common methods for cleaning non-organic fruits to see which worked best in the removal of surface and internalized pesticide residues from apples... which are one of the fruits which absorb and have the highest amounts of pesticides in the US

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Talking to Weelicious about the Non-Toxic Kitchen

Today I headed over to Weelicious and One Potato Box headquarters  to hang out with their founder, Catherine McCord.  We had a great time talking about all things healthy parenting and  specifically all things related to the non-toxic kitchen on her Facebook Live space.  We also answered some great questions from her followers and one lucky viewer won the most adorable (and  Non-Toxic Munchkin Approved!)  Petits et Maman wooden plate! 

Check out the link below to see the full episode!

  If you are curious about some of the items we mentioned during the Facebook Live here are some of the links:

Lodge LCC3 Cast Iron Combo Cooker, Pre-Seasoned, 3.2-Quart

All-Clad Stainless Steel Roasting Pan with Rack 51114 , 11" x 13"

Glasslock 18-Piece Assorted Oven Safe Container Set

Pyrex Basics Clear Oblong Glass Baking Dishes, 2 Piece Value Plus Pack Set

TeamFar Baking Sheet Set of 3, Stainless Steel Cookie Sheet Baking Tray Pan, Healthy & Non Toxic, Mirror Finish & Rust Free, Easy Clean & Dishwasher Safe

Lunchskins Reusable Quart Bag, Navy Blue Bike

Stasher Reusable Silicone Food Bag, Sandwich Bag, Sous vide Bag, Storage Bag, Aqua

Petits Et Maman Kids' Wood Plate Rabbit Fork and Spoon Set

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Why 'BPA free, Pthalate free and PVC free' Isn't Always the Best Choice

I saw this water bottle on my walk home today and couldn't help but think of the child who it belonged too... no doubt their parents bought this water bottle from a well known and 'trusted' company thinking it was a safe option for their child... it is marketed as "  BPA free, Pthalate free and PVC free'... so why wouldn't a parent think it is a safe option for their little one?  Well.....