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  • Is There Arsenic in My Kids’ Apple Juice?

    girl drinking juicegirl drinking juiceby Rachel Lincoln Sarnoff

    Executive Director/CEO

    Healthy Child Healthy World

    Last week, the news broke that Consumer Reports had found traces of arsenic in apple juice. Naturally, I was alarmed. Although we don't keep juice in the house-limiting the selections to filtered water and organic milk-my kids do drink apple juice in restaurants and friend's houses.

    Could I have unintentionally exposed them to poison?

    This was a question running through many parents' minds last week. And although the amounts of arsenic discovered were low-10 parts per billion-they were still higher than the levels deemed safe by the FDA for drinking water (there are no safety levels set for arsenic in juice). However, as of press time, none of the brands listed-which included the organic Whole Foods 365 Everyday Value brand as well as Gerber Organic-have issued recalls.

    According to Consumer Reports, the story first made headlines when "Dr. Oz" found high

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  • Are IPads & IPhones Good Gifts for Kids?

    iphoneiphoneby Janelle Sorensen, Chief Communications Officer, Healthy Child Healthy World

    What do children age six to twelve want most this holiday season? According to a new report from The Nielsen Company,
    iPads, iPod Touches, and iPhones top the electronics wish list. However, those clamoring to stuff their kids' holiday stockings with the latest electronic gadgets would do well to ponder experts' warnings before buying one.

    Few people appreciate that all of these wireless devices come with manufacturers' fine print warnings not to hold them next to an adult body, or that
    controlled studies show that microwave radiation from cell phones weaken the brain's protective barrier, and that according to a recently published scientific report from Environmental Health Trust (EHT), children's heads absorb twice as much microwave radiation from cell phones as adults.

    In addition, radiation from cell phones carried in shirts or pants pockets of adults is four to seven times higher than the Read More »from Are IPads & IPhones Good Gifts for Kids?
  • No More Spitting in the Wind

    chemical tubeschemical tubesby Rachel Lincoln Sarnoff
    Executive Director & CEO
    Healthy child Healthy World

    I just tuned in to the webcast of last week's Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works hearing on the 2011 Safe Chemicals Act.

    Scintillating stuff.

    No, really. Healthy Child Healthy World has been pushing for chemical management reform for nearly 20 years. On a daily basis, we can help parents understand how to reduce toxic chemical exposures, but without a better chemical management policy at the federal level, we're just spitting in the wind.

    But back to the hearing, where things got pretty heated: Democratic Senators Ben Cardin of Maryland, Jeff Merkley of Oregon and Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island criticized the obstructionist tactics of Cal Dooley, president of the American Chemistry Council, which represents Dow, DuPont and Exxon Mobil Chemical, among others.

    Surprisingly, the Consumer Specialty Products Association, which represents companies like Procter &

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  • Dirty Secrets of Common Cleaners Revealed

    logologoby Janelle Sorensen, Chief Communications Officer, Healthy Child Healthy World

    I remember distinctly the first time I truly read a cleaning product label. I had just started learning about how everyday products are largely unregulated in terms of potential health impacts and I thought, "what's even in the cleaning products I'm using?" I picked up a bottle of Pledge, flipped it over, and over, and nowhere could I find a simple ingredients list.

    I was dumbfounded.

    I mean, it's one thing for me to erroneously assume that whatever is in a product is safe, but to me it was totally another to be using something that was made from ingredients I couldn't even identify. Not only that, I quickly found out I didn't even have a right to know - manufacturers had no obligation to tell me.

    Nothing much has changed since then - except I switched to a combination of homemade and certifiably non-toxic cleaners and, many manufacturers are using misleading packaging that makes

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  • How Can I Detox My Thanksgiving Diet?

    piespiesby Janelle Sorensen, Chief Communications Officer, Healthy Child Healthy World

    Most people wonder how to detox
    after the holidays, but have you ever considered getting a jump start on the process? Detoxing your diet by choosing healthier foods and drinks throughout the holidays can go a long way towards curbing post-gluttony guilt and, more importantly, it can also reduce your family's exposure to questionable additives and contaminants commonly found in holiday feasts.

    One thing in particular you should be aware of this holiday is what's in canned foods. A new report released today by the Breast Cancer Fund documents the presence of the toxic chemical bisphenol A (BPA) in canned foods used to prepare a typical Thanksgiving dinner.

    BPA is used to make, among other things, the epoxy-resin linings of metal food cans. The lining forms a barrier between the metal and the food which helps to prevent bacterial contamination. However, the toxic chemical can leach from the resin and make its

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  • Push A Stroller; Change The World

    by Rachel Lincoln Sarnoff

    Executive Director/CEO

    Healthy Child Healthy World

    The last time I pushed a stroller around the neighborhood, my objectives were pretty lightweight: Exercise and a sleeping baby. My now five-year-old daughter boycotted strollers once she realized the freedom that came on her own two feet, but I'd love to borrow one-and, perhaps, a baby-on November 10 th, if the Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families stroller brigade comes to town.

    In this case, the objectives are pretty serious: Moms across the country are walking to raise awareness of toxic chemical exposures and to ask their senators to support the Safe Chemicals Act.

    I know what you're thinking. The Safe Chemicals Act-wasn't that passed already? Sadly, no. The Act, which aims to update an outdated Toxic Substances Control Act, which was passed in 1976 and has never been updated, was re-introduced in April to the Senate as the "Safe Chemicals Act of 2011." And there

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  • Can You Hear Us Now? Kids & Cells Update

    by Rachel Lincoln Sarnoff

    Executive Director/CEO

    Healthy Child Healthy World

    What kind of world do we live in when the one thing children want to do most could give them cancer? At least when kids thought smoking was cool there was a warning label on the pack.

    Despite studies like the one published last week in Electromagnetic Biology and Medicine, which found kids' brains absorb twice as much cell phone radiation as adults, the FCC continues to insist that "currently no scientific evidence establishes a causal link between wireless device use and cancer or other illnesses," according to the website Fair Warning.

    "The standard for cellphones has been developed based on old science and old models and old assumptions about how we use cellphones," co-author Devra Lee Davis told ABC News. The study's authors contend that the FCC's assessments are based on the radiation absorbed by a large adult male, according to Consumer Reports Health.

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  • Food Issues: Corn vs. Sugar Smackdown

    by Rachel Lincoln Sarnoff

    CEO/Executive Director, Healthy Child Healthy World

    Many of us at Healthy Child Healthy World [] are a wee bit obsessed with Citizens For Health's new website. How could you not be riveted to breaking food industry news? (Okay, we're food geeks.)

    Anyhoo, last week the site reported that the Corn Refiners Association-a high fructose corn syrup manufacturers industry group-has petitioned the FDA for a name change. The CRA is so concerned by the negative public image of high fructose corn syrup that they now want to call "corn sugar" or just plain "sugar."


    Apparently, this isn't a new story. According to Food Identity Theft, the CRA began a $50 million marketing campaign in 2008 to re-label high fructose corn syrup. The new news is that now they are being sued by a group of sugar farmers and refiners who are worried the name change would confused consumers and hurt the sugar

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  • BPA-Free? Not Exactly.

    by Rachel Lincoln Sarnoff

    Executive Director/CEO

    Healthy Child Healthy World

    The Bisphenol A story just gets bigger and bigger. Today, the Associated Press reported that the American Chemistry Council has asked federal regulators to phase out rules which allow BPA in baby bottles and sippy cups. Sounds good, right? But this request may "head off tougher laws that would ban the chemical from other types of packaging," according to the AP.

    Not so good.

    And last week, Chemical & Engineering News reported on a recent study that found people absorb BPA through their skin through coated paper products like cash register receipts. The study, conducted by New York state public health laboratory Wadsworth Center, tested 83 receipts from seven U.S. cities and found BPA in all of them-even ones labeled "BPA-free."

    Why is keeping up with BPA news so important to us at Healthy Child Healthy World? California Watch, founded by the Center for

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  • My Children Had Lead Poisoning And Yours May Too

    by Tamara Rubin, Founder, The Lead Safe America Foundation

    Our children were poisoned by the work of a contractor that we hired to paint the exterior our beautiful, Colonial Revival-period home in the Historic Irvington neighborhood in Portland, Oregon.

    The painter told us he was certified to safely handle the lead paint used on houses built prior to 1978 (a certification necessary in order to prepare the exterior surfaces for painting.) His bid seemed high ($18,000+) but we were willing to pay it because we believed his training/certification would ensure that the work was done safely.

    He also told us it was safe to stay in our home while he did the work as he was "only working on the exterior and therefore there was no risk at all posed to our children."

    He lied. Not only was he not certified, but he used the most dangerous and even illegal methods for paint removal: pressure washing, dry scraping and open-flame-torch burning. Our children became violently ill with

    Read More »from My Children Had Lead Poisoning And Yours May Too


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