Everything You Need to Know About the Dangers of Pesticides and Preservatives in Baby Food
January 15, 2017
Packaged with photos of adorable babies and cute taglines, most baby food seems so very harmless. We want the best for our children and of course are drawn towards this happy imagery.
And yet, there’s much lurking beneath the surface of this happy packaging. Some of these, which are commonly found in children’s food, include artificial colors, flavors, GMOS and preservatives. These have major effects on your baby’s health in shocking, lasting ways.
Many people have become hip to eating organic, but this must also become popularized in the realm of baby food! You likely don’t need us to tell you about the preservatives and additives in items like pre-made frozen chicken nuggets or fast food. (if you do, time to educate yourself on that immediately!) Where the issue becomes sneaky is often in meats, as well as raw foods like our fruits and vegetables. Those peas you puree or canned fruits? Artificial colors are often added to make the food itself look more appealing, even if it makes it worse for your baby’s insides It’s crucial to make sure they’re organic!
Firstly, let’s define organic. Organic foods are grown without pesticides, synthetic fertilizers, sewage sludge, genetically modified organisms, or ionizing radiation. In addition, animals that produce meat, poultry, eggs, and dairy products do not take antibiotics or growth hormones are defined as safe. Knowing this can be tricky as we usually can’t detect the taste of pesticides. This doesn’t mean they aren’t entering babies’ bloodstreams! Labels can also be tricky and misleading, another stress that we remove from the equation by only cooking with ingredients that are free of these pesky, sneaky killers!
So, you get it, these sneaky additives are bad for your child. But how bad? Below are some sneaky ways pesticides might be affecting your child’s health.
ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder)
Did you know that links have been found between petroleum-based additives (including artificial colors and flavors) and ADHD? This research started in the 1970s with Benjamin Feingold, MD, an allergist. His work found that food additives can trigger hyperactivity. There are many other links between diet and ADHD, and countless research has been done in recent decades. For example, another Harvard study found links between pesticides and ADHD. In other words, if you want your baby to be focused at school and in life, keep these nasty items out of their food!
Obesity and diabetes
Powerful research points to the link between pesticides and obesity, and as a result, to diabetes. It’s not just too many calories or sugar that can lead to these harmful physical conditions.
Pesticides and preservatives have been linked to many different cancers. One particularly alarming study published in Environmental Health Perspectives found use of pesticides increases the risk of children’s’ brain cancer. Keep your baby cancer free!
In addition to these health risks, it’s important to instill this knowledge in your children from as early an age as possible. Remember our last post about the importance of the first 1,000 days of your baby’s life? Feeding your child with an awareness of these toxins not only makes them healthier but teaches them habits they’ll carry for the rest of their lives.
Raising a baby is a time-consuming job unto itself, and we understand the temptation to reach for whatever is most convenient. Now that you understand the harm these pesticides and preservatives cause, you’ll know to only feed your baby foods that are completely free of them. This is why we at First Spoons™ ensure all of our meals are prepared from scratch without those icky threats to your baby’s health.