Do our kids pay the highest “price” for pesticides?

The more I read and research, the more uneasy I become with the dangers that lurk in our (seemingly) healthiest food sources… especially where our kids are concerned.

pesticidesI’ve talked about produce, the “dirty dozen” and the “clean 15”, and shared what I’ve learned about organic vs. non-organic milk, but what does it all really mean?  Well, it means A LOT when it comes to our children… even more than I originally realized.

We know that pesticides are used in farming to protect crops from damage.  We also know that pesticides can contribute to cancer, lung disease and reproductive problems, but our little ones (especially) are being put at risk.

Consider these three important facts:

  • Research has shown that pesticides can also change brain chemistry, leading to behavioral disorders and learning disabilities, as well as nervous system damage.
  • Children absorb pesticides more easily and their bodies have a harder time breaking them down.
  • Pesticides can actually block the absorption of nutrients (so while you’re forcing down the broccoli, the nutrients aren’t getting through).

Those three things are reason enough for concern. So what do we do?  Well, consider these actions:

  1. buy organic for the high-risk produce and anything your child consumes a lot of.produce
  2. soak, scrub and/or peel the other produce to decrease the pesticides.
  3. buy local – produce that requires lengthy transportation to reach the markets often have POST-harvest pesticides added too!
  4. purchase fruits and veggies in season – if they’re not, they often come from another hemisphere and will contain even MORE pesticides.
  5. eat a variety of fruits & veggies to avoid excessive consumption of the same pesticides.

There are days when I would like to put our kids in a plastic bubble to protect them (but then, of course, the plastic from the bubble would be bad for the environment!) so I just need to use what I know, put it into everyday actions and protect those precious little bodies.

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14 thoughts on “Do our kids pay the highest “price” for pesticides?

  1. i sooooo believe that our kids are getting the raw end of the stick. maybe when we were younger pesticides weren’t as prevalent as they are today. it seems to me that nothing goes without being touched by some sort of contamination. living in Costa Rica really makes it a challenge for my son to eat healthy. there are so few options for organics, plus Costa Rica is the number 1 country in all of Latin America to import and use pesticides!
    The Travel Expert(a) and an Expat with a Twist

  2. I grew up in the farmlands of Iowa back in the 70’s/80’s. Pesticide use was even more common then than it is now there. I often wonder what my friends and I inhaled playing in those corn and soybean fields. Those skies always seemed so blue and clear that it just never seemed anything could harm us….

    http://www.ecolabelfundraising.com

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  4. marina – you sure do have a challenge on your hands! Are you able to grow any vegetables of your own? I sure wish I could but that would mean clearing lots of trees and that’s something I can’t bring myself to do, so I have to settle for buying as many organics as possible. Best of luck to you and keep doing all you can!

  5. I wish organics were so darn expensive! It seems like I we wither have a lot more food in the house, which turns out to be the yucky stuff…or we have wonderful organics that cost me way more than I can afford and it doesn’t ever last as long. Humph. I usually just try to get organic fruits and vegs and milk and the rest I just buy what is pretty healthy and NEVER EVER contains high fructose corn syrup. That stuff is bad news. I have looked into our local farmers markets here and they do not even sell organic. So, I am left with the idea of starting my own garden while shuddering with fear over the idea. I do not have a green thumb (just the rest of me is green) hehe. We will see. First I need to find someone to loan me their tiller…then try to either convince my hubs to do it or figure that one out. BLAH.
    Islandermom (we love Vidazorb probiotics!! Woohoo Great for your health and taste good too)

  6. islander mom – you said it! I still dream to have a garden but it’s nearly impossible without clearing trees and getting a seven foot fence to keep out our deer friends… they sure love everything else I grow! :)

  7. Organic is so much more expensive, but so is the junkfood. It’s a constant battle at the grocery store to find a happy medium – especially when I have to ween my kids from so much of the bad stuff. It’s all a process.

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