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  • National Healthy Child Party Week

    healthy child healthy worldhealthy child healthy worldby Ashley Hernandez, Communications & Strategic Partnerships Coordinator

    Healthy Child Healthy World

    What if you could host a party that would change the world?

    National Healthy Child Party Week is a week-long celebration, in which parents will gather at kitchen tables, parks, offices and school nationwide to discuss ways to create healthier, non-toxic environments for their children.

    In honor of our 20th Anniversary, Healthy Child has created a brand new party kit that empowers parents with resources and tools to educate their friends and family. The 2012 Healthy Child Kit, sponsored by Luna and Earth Friendly products, provides educational materials, party planning tools and samples from our Trusted Partners to make hosting a party easy and fun. With 4,000 parties hosted since 2008, parents from around the country have shared our story and empowered many others to do the same.

    This year we are reaching more families than ever before.

    From March 1- April

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  • Is There Arsenic in My Baby Formula?

    creative commonscreative commonsby Rachel Lincoln Sarnoff
    Executive Director/CEO
    Healthy Child Healthy World

    Last week's findings of arsenic in organic brown rice syrup may be even more frightening to parents than last year's discovery of the cancer-causing substance in apple juice. That's because organic brown rice syrup is ubiquitous in natural products-it's used as a substitute for high fructose corn syrup.

    MNN reported on the Dartmouth study, which found concentrations of arsenic of 23 to 128 parts per billion (ppb)-12 times the Environmental Protection Agency's safe drinking water limit of 10 ppb-in some cereal bars containing rice. (The EPA has not set safety levels for arsenic in food.)

    High levels-as much as 20 times the EPA's water safety level-were found in two organic infant formulas that contained organic brown rice syrup, leading Dr. Richard Besser, ABC's Chief Health and Medical Editor, to recommend parents avoid formulas that contain the substance.

    Where is the arsenic coming from?

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  • Reduce Chemicals to Increase Fertility

    valentinevalentineRachel Lincoln Sarnoff
    Executive Director & C.E.O
    Healthy Child Healthy World

    On Valentine's Day, the last thing you want to think about is whether toxic chemicals will prevent you from starting a family. But with rates of infertility on the rise and testosterone levels in decline, we may need to factor in chemical exposures to the future of our love lives.
    Infertility affects one in eight couples in the United States-that's 7.3 million people who have trouble with pregnancy, according to the CDC. And although it was once thought that infertility was a "female problem," medical evidence shows that infertility is an equal opportunity problem: One-third of infertility is attributed to the female, one-third to the male and one-third to combined factors from both male and female.

    This post is for the guys.

    Last week, drugstore chains Walgreens and CVS announced they would begin stocking a male infertility test as of April, marking the first time men can get an over-the-counter test of

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  • Gloves Come Off in GE Food Fight

    salmonsalmonby Rachel Lincoln Sarnoff

    Executive Director/CEO

    Healthy Child Healthy World

    When is a salmon not a salmon? It sounds ridiculous, but that's one of the most important issues in the food world, where the gloves are off in the fight about genetically engineered foods.

    Genetically engineered or modified foods-known as GE foods or GMOs-have been unnaturally altered at the molecular level. The DNA from different sources or even different species are combined together to create a new set of genes that are thought to confer an advantage, such as more rapid growth or resistance to cold.

    And, according to Healthy Child board member and food activist Robyn O'Brien, who appears in this video, some GE foods are designed to release insecticides inside the plant and to withstand increasing doses of pesticides. That's right, insecticides and pesticides linked to cancer, neurotoxicity, birth defects, reproductive disorders, kidney and liver damage, according to Dr. Phil

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  • Flame Retardants Refuse to Burn Out

    Boy Looking In CribBoy Looking In Cribby Rachel Lincoln Sarnoff

    Executive Director/CEO

    Healthy Child Healthy World

    Think the flame retardant Tris is a thing of the past? Think again. Last week the Washington Toxics Coalition and Safer States released a study that found 80% of new baby and children's products tested positive for chlorinated Tris (TDCPP), a chemical voluntarily removed from children's pajamas in the 1970s because it was found to cause cancer.

    The Hidden Hazards In the Nursery study tested 20 products-including nursing pillows, changing pads, bassinet pads and car seats-for traces of Tris and other toxic chemical flame retardants called polybrominated diphenyl ether compounds, or PBDEs.

    The findings echo those of a 2011 UC Berkeley study authored by Arlene Blum, a Healthy Child Healthy World Advisory Board member, which found that 36% of 101 baby products tested positive for Tris.

    According to the Berkeley study, Americans have 20 times higher blood levels

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  • What the National Children’s Study Means to You

    sneezing girlsneezing girlby Rachel Lincoln Sarnoff

    Executive Director/CEO

    Healthy Child Healthy World

    Is there a link between the environment and illnesses such as pediatric cancer, asthma, allergies and behavioral problems? According to the scientists and doctors who advise Healthy Child Healthy World, the answer is yes.

    For example, we believe it makes sense to reduce children's exposure to chemicals like Bisphenol A (BPA), which last month the U.S. Institute of Medicine (IOM) acknowledged has a "biological plausibility" for causing breast cancer.

    When encouraging parents to avoid cans lined with BPA, among other things, we're motivated by the Precautionary Principle, established in 1998, which states:

    "When an activity raises threats of harm to human health or the environment, precautionary measures should be taken even if some cause and effect relationships are not fully established scientifically."

    But many say that the links between the

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  • What’s Safe and What’s Not? How Toys Stack Up

    baby onesiebaby onesieby Rachel Lincoln Sarnoff

    Executive Director/CEO

    Healthy Child Healthy World

    Have you checked your toy list twice? Wait, let me rephrase that: Have you checked the list of what's in your toys twice? I just discovered the toy database at, which ranks more than 20,000 toys or toy components, organized from "none" to "high" levels for dangerous chemicals.

    I checked my list against theirs-my daughter's coveted Baby Alive is a low, thank goodness-and crossed off a few, noting the irony of Target's "green baby" shirt weighing in with dangerously high levels of lead and arsenic. Sheesh!

    Especially this time of year, it's worth looking into what you buy. In November, the Illinois PIRG Education Fund released their 26th Annual Survey of Toy Safety report, which found that lead, a known neurotoxin, is still a problem, with several toys exceeding the generous 300ppm standard set by the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act, and

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  • EPA Cleans House, Industry Fights Back

    boy in fieldboy in fieldby Rachel Lincoln Sarnoff

    Executive Director/CEO

    Healthy Child Healthy World

    The Environmental Protection Agency is cleaning house. Last week, Administrator Lisa P. Jackson released hundreds of chemical studies, which were formerly kept secret from the public as confidential business information.

    This week, National Public Radio reported that the EPA released information on pollution violations at more than 1,600 power plants, which expose communities to benzene, formaldehyde, mercury and other hazardous chemicals. According to NPR, at least 300 of these-considered "high priority violators" for at least 10 years-were on a secret EPA "watch list" until now.

    But the industries that depend on these chemicals are fighting back. Recently, the International Fragrance Association North America challenged a law introduced by Representative Steve Israel of New York that would force them to have ingredient lists on their bottles, claiming that

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  • Stand Up to Pesticides

    vegetablesvegetablesBy Rachel Lincoln Sarnoff

    Executive Director/CEO Healthy Child Healthy World

    I'm so inspired by last week's Grist profile on Mari Rose Taruc, an environmental activist and a mother of two asthmatic kids who saw the connection between pesticides and health first hand when she emigrated from the Philippines to a farming community in central California, and now works on environmental justice causes as the staff director for the Asian Pacific Environmental Network. Talk about a Mom on a Mission!

    The effect of pesticides on our health cannot be understated, and this month's release of an EPA panel assessment on atrazine was groundbreaking-even if it didn't make the front-page news. As reported by Mother Jones, until recently the EPA has considered atrazine, the second-most widely used pesticide in the United States and a groundwater contaminant, "non-carcinogenic." However, in 2009 the EPA assembled a panel of independent scientists and public

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  • Elisabeth Rohm to Host Parenting Webinar

    elisabeth rohmelisabeth rohmby Janelle Sorensen, Healthy Child Healthy World

    I just read "Celebrity Moms: They're Nothing Like Us" over at The Huffington Post and there were many valid points. I'll never spend $87,000 on a nursery or $265 on baby jeans, but when you remove the money and fame factor - are they really that different?

    I think there's one point all moms can agree on - we want healthy children. We'll do whatever we can to protect our children's health. And, that's what the upcoming webinar being hosted by "Law & Order's" Elisabeth Rohm is all about.

    Healthy Child Healthy World is launching a new "lunch and learn" webinar series sponsored by Kiwi magazine. The inaugural event, hosted by Healthy Child Luminary Board member and "Law & Order" star Elisabeth Röhm and Rachel Lincoln Sarnoff, the organization's Executive Director and CEO, will debut December 8th, from 11:00am to 11:45 PST (1:00 to 1:45 CMT; 2:00 to 2:45 EST).

    This FREE event will help parents understand how to reduce the

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