How Pregnant Women Can Reduce their Exposure to Harmful Toxins
By: Janice Hoult, Pregnancy Nutrition and Health Coach
The thought of babies being born pre-polluted with toxins is enough to scare any expecting mom, but it’s a topic that needs to be talked about because it’s real and happening. And like many things during pregnancy – A Mom Has More Power Than She’s Lead to Believe.
Here’s the deal, virtually every adult in North America has measurable levels of several toxins in their body. This goes for pregnant women too, which means that a baby is exposed to toxins in utero. Many of these toxins cross the placenta barrier and are taken in by our little ones.
The Environmental Working group tested the umbilical cord blood from 10 babies and reported:
“Of the 287 chemicals we detected in umbilical cord blood, we know that 180 cause cancer in humans or animals, 217 are toxic to the brain and nervous system, and 208 cause birth defects or abnormal development in animal tests.” Another study by Environmental Defence was done on Canadian children from Toronto and surrounding areas. They reported similar findings.
Before they’re even born, babies are exposed to chemicals that alter their cells, DNA and organs, like their heart and brain, impacting their chances of reaching their fullest potential. These harmful chemicals can be found in pesticides, consumer product ingredients, and waste from burning coal, gasoline, and garbage.
This is the wake up call I got when I was pregnant with my daughter. I looked around and saw my friend’s kids, these beautiful incredible children, struggling with things like chronic illness, asthma, anxiety, autoimmune diseases, ADD and learning challenges. I listened to the news as I drove to work and they talked about how obesity and diabetes in kids is now an epidemic, and how 1 in 2 people in Canada will get cancer in their lifetime and 1 in 4 will die from it! Here I was, pregnant for the very first time, dreaming about my daughters future but so worried that I was going to mess her up. I was scared and nervous. Maybe you are too.
However, there IS some good news:
- There are lots of easy ways to reduce your exposure.
- The body is an amazing machine that can naturally detox some of this out of our systems.
- People like you are waking up to the fact that this matters
- *We can vote with our wallets every time we buy something. This sends a message to major companies about what consumers want and don’t want.
*TRUST ME, THIS WORKS! I USED TO WORK WITH THE TOP FOOD MANUFACTURERS IN THE WORLD. THEY ARE PAYING ATTENTION!
Yes it’s everywhere, but that just means we have so many opportunities. We don’t just have to sit back and let our kids be built in toxic soup. And it doesn’t have to be hard. We just have to be aware of the choices we make and decide to do the best we can with what we’ve got.
Here are just a few things you can do:
- Reduce the PESTICIDES you eat: Avoid produce that has the highest load of pesticide residue or buy these items organic. Consider organic meats, eggs and dairy or find a farmer that you trust that doesn’t use conventional pesticide-laced feed. (Your local famers’ market would be a great place to start!)
- Eat low-MERCURY-risk seafood: Fish is a pregnancy superfood, so eat up. Just avoid the larger species that can bio-accumulate toxins. Instead add some Wild Atlantic Salmon, Haddock, Tilapia and Trout to your diet.
- Trash the TEFLON: Replace any Teflon non-stick cookware with glass or good-quality stainless steel, to reduce your exposure to PFCs that have been associated with low birthweight, organ and bone alternations, and put mom at a higher risk for preeclampsia.
- Avoid BPA or heating plastics: Even the BPA-Free plastics are on the naughty list. Use glass products when you can and don’t, don’t, don’t put hot food or liquids into anything plastic and then consume it.
- Drink lots of clean filtered water: A newborn is 75% water and they’ve been swimming around in amniotic fluid all made from what you take in. Drink clean filtered water when you can and skip the plastic bottles.
I hope you can find a few things on this list that you can start doing today to reduce your exposure to some common, yet nasty, toxins.
With love and empowerment,
Janice Hoult is a Pregnancy Nutrition and Health Coach that teaches women how to eat and live well for an empowering pregnancy and the smartest, healthiest baby within their control. She’s the founder of the Healthy Baby Blueprint Prenatal Nutrition and Wellness program and offers a free Healthy Pregnancy MasterClass