Heavy Metals in Baby Food: What You Should Know
Arsenic, Lead, Cadmium & More in Popular Baby Food Brands
You may have heard the recent news about heavy metals and toxins found in many grocery store baby food brands. Even though only trace amounts of each toxic chemical were found, these small doses can add up over time and become detrimental to your baby’s developing brain. We know this is scary news to take in, we wanted to share with you how to protect your little one and how we do things differently at Tiny Organics.
So how does this happen? The heavy metals named in this study are often found in soil and water, and crops can absorb them while they grow. However, some plants are more prone to absorption than others.
The good news is that there are many simple steps you can take to protect your Little One and set them up for a healthy future.
3 Ways to Steer Clear of Metal in Baby Foods
1. Avoid rice puffs & rice cereal: The highest risks of heavy metals come from puff snacks, teething biscuits, and infant rice cereals. Rice absorbs these heavy metal contaminants at 10 times the rate as other crops. One of the bigger issues is that in the US, rice cereal has been recommended by doctors as a first food for many years, but we now know that there are better first food options! Rather than rice puff snacks and teething biscuits, it is totally safe to feed your baby soft, whole veggies as a first food! Gnawing on cold veggies can also be soothing on gums while your baby is teething.
2. Avoid purees and concentrates: Highly concentrated products such as the rice cereals and juices tested have high levels of these contaminants because of the concentration of ingredients in these products.
3. Variety is key: One of the best things we can do for our health is to eat a well-balanced, diverse diet. The same is true for our little ones. The study may call out sweet potatoes and carrots as high risk vegetables for contaminants. It’s important to note however, that the study doesn’t say “don’t eat sweet potatoes or carrots ever again” - because these are great nutritious vegetables that your little one needs in their diet! The best thing you can do is offer your baby or toddler a variety of foods. According to Amy Keating, R.D., a nutritionist at Consumer Reports, “feeding your baby a wide range of foods is key, because this avoids the risk of contaminants building up in the child’s system. It’s important to remember that a healthy diet consists of a variety of foods. Carrots and sweet potatos are sources of important nutrients like beta carotene, potassium, and fiber, and you can feed them to your child in rotation with other vegetables. What’s key is eating a balance of healthy foods.”
This same study finds that you can reduce your risk by up to 80% just by choosing healthy alternatives like whole vegetables, fruits, legumes, spices and non-rice grains. That's why we emphasize exposing children to a wide variety of diverse ingredients. The best solution found to reduce the risk and exposure to heavy metals is to feed children a well-balanced and diverse diet.
Tiny's Commitment to Producing Safe Baby Foods
Tiny Organics offers only real, whole foods, freshly cooked and fresh-frozen - a safer and more nutritious alternative than highly processed traditional baby and toddler food offerings.
Here are some ways we are ensuring your little one receives the most nutritious start possible from our meals:
- We only use 100% USDA-certified organic ingredients. Our fresh produce is delivered daily to our kitchen from a local organic purveyor.
- We regularly perform lab tests by an independent third party to ensure food safety and quality.
- Our meals are cooked daily in small batches, no heavy machinery or extra processing.
To find out more about each recipe from our menu,
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1. "Some Baby Food May Contain Toxic Metals, U.S. Reports", NY Times.
2. "Baby Foods Are Tainted with Dangerous Levels of Arsenic, Lead, Cadmium, and Mercury", Staff Report Subcommittee on Economic and Consumer Policy Committee on Oversight and Reform U.S. House of Representatives.
3. "Toxic Heavy Metals Found in Some Baby Food, Congressional Report Says", Wall Street Journal.