Friday, February 24, 2017

Stress, Toxic Chemicals and Autism: the Factors that Affect Your Baby's Developing Brain

How external factors that affect a woman during pregnancy can also affect her baby's developing brain.

Today I attended Mt Sinai's Children's Environmental Health Center’s 10th Annual Winter Symposium  which focused on the “ Decade of the Developing Brain” 

During the span of almost three hours, we heard from top experts who spoke about the links between environmental factors and the development of the brain, with an emphasis placed on autism.  

The main takeaways from this mornings symposium were:

We know that a large percentage of autism is due to genetic factors (researchers estimate around 60%) but a significant percentage is still unknown. We do know that environmental factors need to be taken into account. 


Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Finding a Chemical-Free Countertop Cleaner; Because No One Wants Food Prepped With a Side of Toxic Chemicals

We spent a lot of family time in the kitchen.   The kids help me prep food throughout the day and that means that, often, our counter gets used as a cutting board  and - I admit- even as a plate sometimes by the kids.  Other times, while I cook, they do their homework and artwork on our counter .   Basically, our kitchen countertops get used so much that I end up wiping them clean various times throughout the day.   

How important is it to find a product that will clean your countertop and not add any harmful chemicals to it?  For our family, because we spend so much time in the kitchen breathing in the air, and place food and little hands all over the countertops, I think it is really important.  Most store bought kitchen counter cleaners are filled with potentially harmful chemicals which will linger well after you are done cleaning ( to see how the product you use compares click over to the Environmental Working Groups Cleaners Database where 97% of the countertop cleaners analyzed scored a C, D or F in terms of harmful chemicals.)

Friday, February 10, 2017

Choosing A Hand Sanitizer That is Safe For Children

Which hand sanitizers are safe for children?

Anyone who knows me or reads this blog knows that I am a fan of good old hand washing.  I hate, hate, hate that fact that classrooms across the country have huge containers of antibacterial hand sanitizers that they encouraged kids to use throughout the day instead of encouraging hand washing.   I cringe at the park when I see little kids placing travel hand sanitizers in their mouths (something I actually see a lot of).