New video from NutritionFacts.org on food contaminant exposures of children.
“Recently the diets of California children, ages two through seven, were analyzed to determine the cancer and non-cancer health effects from food contaminant exposures. Food may be the primary route of exposure to toxic heavy metals, persistent pollutants, and pesticides. Though food-borne toxic contaminants are a concern for all ages, they are of greatest concern for children, who are disproportionately impacted because they’re still developing and have greater intake of food and fluids relative to their weight. Pediatric problems that have been linked to preventable environmental toxin exposures include cancer, asthma, lead poisoning, neurobehavioral disorders, learning and developmental disabilities, and birth defects.
But the good news is that changing one’s diet can change one’s exposure. A diet high in fish and animal products, for example, results in greater exposure to persistent pollutants like DDT and dioxins and heavy metals than does a plant-based diet because these compounds bioaccumulate up the food chain, and plants are at the bottom of the food chain. Unfortunately that’s the not the kind of diet this sample of kids were eating. Cancer benchmark levels were exceeded by all 364 children for arsenic, the banned pesticide dieldrin, a metabolite of DDT called DDE, and dioxins.”
“What foods were the worse? For preschoolers, the #1 food source of arsenic was poultry, though for their parents it was tuna. The #1 source for lead was dairy and for mercury it was seafood. And the #1 source of the banned pesticides and dioxins was dairy.”
“Because these pollutants accumulate in animal fat, consuming a plant-based diet, decreasing meat, dairy, and fish consumption may reduce exposure for children and adults alike.”
California Children Are Contaminated | NutritionFacts.org.