Many of us are keenly aware of toxins in our foods, beverages, plastics and in the air, but we are not doing enough. A study published in the Lancet Neurology Illustrated shared that exposure to chemicals can be associated with autism, ADHD, behavior, developmental disorders and cancer. This could be the reason we are seeing an epidemic of autistic and neurologically affected children, conditions that are directly impacted by chemicals found in everyday products. "Untested chemicals should not be presumed to be safe to brain development, and chemicals in existing use and all new chemicals must, therefore, be tested for developmental neurotoxicity." Researchers also reported finding additional developmental neurotoxicants, which included manganese, fluoride, chlorpyrifos, tetrachloroethylene and polybrominated diphenyl ethers. With all these toxins, we need to step in as parents to protect our children and ourselves. Here are 6 harmful substances kids are putting into their bodies.
Sunscreen“There is growing recognition in the scientific community that exposure to even low doses of certain chemicals can disturb our hormonal, reproductive and immune systems,” the National Resources Defense Council, an environmental action group found. Sunscreen is another part of the problem. Some chemicals found in sunscreen can cause skin allergies and cause problems with the thyroid. Animal studies find lower sperm counts and sperm abnormalities after exposure to oxybenzone and octinoxate, delayed puberty after exposure to octinoxate and altered estrous cycling for female mice exposed to oxybenzone, an ingredient in sunscreen. "Danish researchers reported that 8 of 13 chemical sunscreen ingredients allowed in the U.S. affected calcium signaling of male sperm cells in laboratory tests." Use sunscreens like Alba Botanical Minerals, Badger Minerals, Babyganics or spray sunscreen instead.
Non-organic FoodsA child's immune system is immature and it can't get rid of the toxins as an adult can. You can't avoid chemicals 100 percent, but eating organic will decrease the probability of ingesting them. Non-organic milk-producing cows are often injected with hormones in order to force them to continue milk. When a child drinks this milk, they receive these hormones. Author Ashley Monroe explained it could cause a hormonal imbalance "and could be a contributing factor to conditions such as PMS and PMDD in women and gynecomastia in men," If pesticides are used in excess, as they are in non-organic farming, a genetic mutation in the insect world and new forms of insects will emerge that we will be unable to combat. There is little winning in this game. If you can, try to give your kids organic because whatever is on the food will get into their systems and it's better for the environment.
Scented ProductsProducts, which are scented can be absorbed into the body and into the bloodstream. Scented candles, room freshers, shampoos and lotions are riddled with chemicals. They may contain phthalates, which are linked to thyroid irregularities and may damage the kidneys and the liver. It may also cause asthma in some children. More than 95 percent of the chemicals in synthetic fragrances are derived from petrochemicals, the Huffington Post reported. "These chemicals include benzene derivatives, aldehydes, phthalates, and a slew of other known toxins that are capable of causing cancer, birth defects and nervous system disorders." Use products that are fragrance-free or have no synthetic fragrance.
SugarWe know that sugar can make kids hyper, but it can cause a plethora of health-related problems. Sugar is linked to diabetes, heart disease, weight gain, cancer and making kids sick. Sugar is in everything we eat. Yogurts, cereals, bread, juices and processed foods carry high sugar content and we can't escape it. In the last few decades, there has been an epidemic of children becoming grossly overweight and sugar is the offender. Additionally, when kids consume too much sugar, this could weaken their immune systems, causing more colds, mucus, coughs and digestive issues.
ToothpasteChildren need to be supervised when brushing their teeth as ingesting too much toothpaste, especially "toothpaste with fluoride, can cause stomach and heart problems," CNN reported. Some of the chemicals found in toothpaste are triclosan (banned in soaps), fluoride, sodium lauryl sulfate, titanium dioxide and carrageenan. These can cause stomach problems, allergies and can be an endocrine disrupter. According to Dr. Mercola, this can cause a wide spectrum of health problems, which includes breast, ovarian, prostate and testicular cancer, precocious puberty in girls and undescended testicles in boys." Look into Jack N' Jill, Honest and Tom's of Maine toothpaste.
Kids are vulnerable to synthetic dyes, which are linked to serious health concerns. Dyes like Yellow 5, Yellow 6, Red 40 are linked to causing cancer. Red 2 and Red 4 potentially contain carcinogenic properties. Children might become hyperactive, develop learning disorders, mood disorders and suffer from allergies by consuming goods with dyes. Dyes are in everything. They are in ice cream, cakes, drinks, candies, meats and cereals. “Color additives are now recognized as an important part of practically all processed foods we eat. Without color additives, colas wouldn’t be brown, margarine wouldn’t be yellow and mint ice cream wouldn’t be green," the U.S. Food and Drug Administration reported. However, don't be fooled by the warning labels and do your own research. When in doubt, do not give kids something you suspect contains food dyes.
Chemicals are in our skin lotions, sunscreens and food, which have dangerous agents that may cause allergy-related symptoms or even cancer in some people. You can't protect kids from everything, but you can have an influence of what they put in their bodies to give them a healthy foundation.