Heavy metals Contamination in Baby Foods
Last week, a congressional report was released showing the widespread contamination of baby food by dangerous levels of heavy metals: arsenic, lead, cadmium and mercury.
These heavy metals can build up in the body and lead to behavior problems, autistic symptoms, learning difficulties and decreased IQ.
I read through the Congressional report and was shocked at the findings. It details how 95% of the baby food companies tested contained high levels of heavy metal contamination in their products. Many of these companies perform internal testing on either the ingredients used in the baby food or the final product. These companies saw the high levels of heavy metals in the food, but continued to send the product to store shelves across the country, so well-meaning parents would feed these foods to their infants. Apparently, although there are regulations as to the allowable levels of heavy metals in drinking water, there are no such regulations for baby food or infant formula.
Levels of these heavy metals in baby food were found to be up to hundreds of times higher than the allowable levels in drinking water. Hundreds!
What can we do? How can we protect our children?
-Eat organic foods. Organic foods have been shown to have lower levels of pesticide residues than conventionally grown produce. Studies have shown that people eating an organic diet have significantly less pesticide residues in their urine than those people eating conventionally grown produce. The most important fruits and vegetables to buy organic are those highest in pesticides. Check out the Environmental Working Group Dirty Dozen (see link below)
-Eat whole foods. Foods that come in a package and have a long shelf life are much more likely to be full of preservatives, chemicals and artificial ingredients that you do not need in your body.
-Eat foods high in glutathione. Glutathione is a "master antioxidant" that helps your cells protect themselves against free radical damage that can occur with exposure to toxins and stress. It also helps pull mercury out of cells and out of the brain. Glutathione can also regenerate Vitamin C and Vitamin E. It is also vital to the function of the mitochondria - the energy generators in our cells. (see more in the link below)
-We must demand accountability from the FDA and the industry to ensure that baby food is tested for heavy metal levels and that those levels are kept to a minimum to keep our children safe and healthy.
Take a read of the article yourself - it's distressing, to say the least. But, remember: with knowledge, comes power. Let's arm ourselves with this information and make sure we are doing our best to feed our families the best way we can.
Congressional report can be found here: https://oversight.house.gov/sites/democrats.oversight.house.gov/files/2021-02-04%20ECP%20Baby%20Food%20Staff%20Report.pdf
Healthy Babies, Bright Futures:
American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) statement: https://www.healthychildren.org/English/ages-stages/baby/feeding-nutrition/Pages/Metals-in-Baby-Food.aspx
Environmental Working Group's "Dirty Dozen" https://www.ewg.org/foodnews/dirty-dozen.php
Glutathione info https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4684116/