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PROTECTING YOUR CHILD
FROM TOXIC THREATS

Please note that this overview addresses personal actions only, and not the community and political actions that are necessary to institute health-protective public policies.  

1) Reducing Risks from Pesticides.

 

2) Reducing Risks from Lead.

 

3) Reducing Risks from Chemicals that Accumulate in Food.

 

4) Reducing Risks from Household Products.

 

5) Reducing Risks from Building Materials, Construction and Furnishings.

 

6) Avoiding Solvents.

 

7) Breast-feeding.

Breast-feeding is recommended for a period of at least one year, since it provides a broad spectrum of important, proven health benefits to the infant.9 These benefits include reduced risks for life threatening diseases as well as mild illnesses. For examplebreast-fed infants have less pneumonia, ear infections, diarrhea, and meningitis in infancy, and later in life, appear less likely to develop asthma, obesity and diabetes. Mothers who breast-feed return to their pre-pregnant weight more quickly, and have improved bone remineralization and reduced risk of hip fractures in later life.

 

8) Alcohol and Tobacco

 

"Protecting Your Child From Toxic Threats to Brain Development" has been written as a companion to the report In Harmís Way: Toxic Threats to Child Development issued by Greater Boston Physicians for Social Responsibility.

 


1 Parts 1,2,4,5,6 adapted from Schettler T, Solomon G, Valenti M et al. Generations at Risk. Cambridge: MIT Press. 1999.
2 Physicians for Social Responsibility. Drinking Water and Disease. 3/2000.
3 Patandin S, Dagnelie P, Mulder P et al. Dietary exposure to PCBs and dioxins from infancy until adulthood: A comparison between breast-feeding, toddler, and long-term exposure. Environmental Health Perspectives 107:45-51, 1999.
4 EPA. Mercury Report to Congress, vol. 4, p.155-160.http://www.epa.gov/ttnuatw1/112nmerc/volume4.pdf.
5 EPA. Mercury Update: Impact on Fish Advisories. www.epa.gov/ostwater/fish/mercury.html.
6 Schettler T et al. Ibid.
7 EPA. Mercury concentrations in the top ten types of fish/shellfish consumed by US residents. Table 3-6, Mercury Report to Congress, 1997. Http://www.epa.gov/ttnuatw1/112nmerc/volume1.pdf.
8 ATSDR. Dioxins, Dibenzofurans, and Dioxin Toxicity Equivalencies (TEQs) in US Foods. Toxicological Profile for Dioxin, draft, 1997. P. 385. Adapted from A. Schecter et al, Congener-specific levels of dioxins and dibenzofurans in US food and estimated daily dioxin toxic equivalent intake.
9 American Academy of Pediatrics. Breast-feeding and the Use of Human Milk. Pediatrics vol. 100 (6):1035-1037, 1997.

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Written by: Greater Boston Physicians for Social Responsibility


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