Tuesday, June 15, 2010

New Study: Link Between ADHD & Pesticides

A recent study, published in the Journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics, indicates a link between pesticides and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). According to the study, which was conducted by Harvard University and the University of Montreal, urine samples were studied for over 1,000 children, ages 8 to 15, for traces of organophosphate pesticide, a common pesticide found on fruits and vegetables. Children with the highest pesticide levels were more than ninety percent more likely than kids with no pesticide traces to have been diagnosed with ADHD.
So, how can we minimize exposure to pesticides and help protect our families from not only ADHD, but hormonal and developmental problems as well? Here are some tips to keep in mind when shopping.
  • Consider organic - Especially for produce that contains the most pesticide residue. Typically, strawberries, peaches, blueberries, broccoli, celery and apples are the biggest culprits.
  • Thoroughly wash produce - Even taking the time to peel certain fruits that you're not able to buy organic will help reduce exposure.
  • Check out farmers market - Local farmstands usually only use the bare minimum and will be happy to let you know what chemicals they do use, if any.

As we dive into the summer bounty of fruits and vegetables, please keep the above in mind and don't be discouraged from enjoying all the delicious produce that nature provides - just be diligent with washing and try to shop organic for those foods with the highest pesticide levels.

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