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US Babies sick with congenital hypothyroidism from Fukushima radiation

US Babies sick with congenital hypothyroidism from Fukushima radiationDespite assurances by the US government, many of us living on the West Coast were very concerned after the fallout from the Fukushima nuclear disaster.  We stocked up on seaweed and potassium iodine.  We gave kelp to our pets. Two years ago, I wrote

Japan Nuclear Crisis: Protect Your Family Naturally From Radioactive Emissions:

The magnitude of the Japanese earthquake is beyond comprehension.  My children have watched images on the news, and my six-year-old son repeatedly asks, “Why?”  I do my best to explain plate tectonics, but the truth is I have no idea how to explain to my children about the imminent nuclear catastrophe, other than we live in One World.

We live on the west coast.  Prevailing winds will bring radioactive emissions to us in three to ten days, from various sources I have read.  Some of it has probably already reached us.

Then, the news a year later was that the radioactive fallout that reached the United States was potentially responsible for an increase in deaths, especially for children under one year of age.

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Plastic-Free, BPA-Free, Safe Stainless Steel Baby Bottles by Pura Kiki

BPA-Free, Safe Stainless Steel Baby Bottles by Pura KikiEven if you breastfeed, it is a good idea to have at least one baby bottle in your home.  There may be times you want to express milk for others to feed while you are away, or as your baby ages and the summer heat increases, a baby bottle is the best way to give your child water.  Unfortunately, many baby bottles are also toxic. The plastic contains chemicals, such as Bisphenol-A (BPA), that have many negative health effects.  Fortunately, many alternatives exist.

From glass to stainless steel, there are many options now for a safe, BPA-free baby bottles for those avoiding plastic.

We were sent a BPA-Free, Safe Stainless Steel Baby Bottle by Pura Kiki designed for a three-month old.

Pura was conceived with a simple notion: To provide the safest and most adaptable juvenile feeding and adult hydration solutions. We are proud to combine ground-breaking innovations with an eco-progressive business model. In 2012 Pura has been recognized with 11 product and business awards and is now sold in more than 30 countries. Most importantly, we remain a family-owned business with a focus on innovation and unparalleled quality. It is crafted from safe, anti-bacterial, No. 304 stainless steel, the same material used in milk pasteurization for years. Pura bottles are the safest on the global market because are bottles are 100% plastic-free, 100% BPA-free, 100% phthalate-free, 100% lead free, 100% toxin-free. Kiki is the only 100% plastic-free juvenile feeding/drinking solution on the global market. Recent studies have shown that even BPA-free plastic has been linked to a myriad of health problems. Pura has received Special Recognition from the US House of Representatives and California Assembly US and Int’l Patents Pending. Pura Kiki products are designed in the USA by a dedicated team of committed parents

These bottles are “responsibly made in China”.

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Why is my baby crying? Is it GERD or Colic? [infographic]

This infographic is brought to you by the homeopathic Colic-Calm Homeopathic Gripe Water, 2 Fluid Ounce

Is your baby telling you to stop breastfeeding? Is it too soon for solid foods?

Is your baby telling you to stop breastfeeding?  Is it too soon for solids?I have breastfed two children for a total of over five years.  One child was ready to quit when we stopped, and one child was not.

I’ve always been a proponent of baby-led weaning (baby signals when it is time to stop breastfeeding).  Unfortunately for many children, whether on formula or breastmilk, this occurs when solids are introduced.   40% of parents introduce solid food too soon.

iTechPost explains:

Pediatricians suggest that babies should be on breast milk or formula until they reach the age of at least 6 months. The American Academy of Pediatrics first said that 4 months was acceptable, a rule that was advised for 20 years. Evidence supporting the health benefits of feeding babies breast milk caused experts to increase the age to 6 months. Although the group said that babies should be fed only breast milk for those first six months, mothers have the option of turning to baby formula instead.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) conducted a nationwide survey and found that many mothers are giving babies solid food too soon. According to the data obtained from 1,334 mothers, 40 percent gave their baby solid food before they reached 4 months of age and 9 percent started their babies as early as 4 weeks old. A study detailing the results was published Monday (March 25) in the journal, Pediatrics.

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Who makes the best sippy cup? NEW BPA-Free Stainless Steel Sippy Cup and Food Canisters by Klean Kanteen

I love Klean Kanteen:   NEW Stainless Steel Sippy Cup and Food Storage
One of my very earliest blog posts on Eco Child’s Play was the exciting discovery of a stainless steel sippy cup!  Wow, that was over six years ago, and the Klean Kanteen stainless steel sippy cup is still my favorite! Now with a new lid and colorful bottles, these sippys can please both children and parents alike. We still use our stainless steel sippys from six years ago. Even though my children no longer use a sippy lid, these bottles take a standard Klean Kanteen lid of your choice to become water bottles. They are the perfect size to fit in my pocket when skiing.

I trust Klean Kanteen. They have always been BPA-free (remember how Sigg lied to us), and they last forever! I have only had to replace two lids for the original bottles I bought when the company began. The bottles may be dented, but they continue not affect the taste of the water they contain!

In 2004, Klean Kanteen® introduced the first hydration bottle made from stainless steel to give people a safe, healthy alternative to plastic. Our commitment to you and the planet drives everything we do. From our stainless steel creations to the company we keep, we are firmly fixed on the task of making healthy, high-quality goods that will faithfully replace a lifetime of single-use items.

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Pesticides linked to low sperm count

Biplane Crop Duster spraying a farm field.I have several friends that have struggled to conceive.  It seems as if the problem is growing. There are even billboards now for fertility specialists.  Could something in our environment be to blame?

Scientists have found a “strong association” between exposure to pesticides and lower sperm counts in males.

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Body Sense for Baby: Badger Balm and Under the Nile Organic

badgerLooking for a perfect, affordable eco-friendly baby gift?   You can’t go wrong when shopping on Body Sense.  Body Sense makes it easy to shop for safe, natural products by placing the Environmental Working Group (EWG) hazard score on each product page.  No need to bounce back and forth between websites for find out if a product is actually “natural” or “healthy”.

Many companies sell products they describe as “natural” or “organic”. Some of them are even certified “natural” or “organic” by independent entities. But what do these words really mean? Unfortunately, they are sometimes used too loosely and can be misleading. After all, arsenic and lead are “natural”! At worst, these words can be inadequate proxies for the safety of you and your family. Body Sense sells only products rated by an American non profit organization as having the lowest-hazard potential, on a three-level scale. You will never find a product rated “moderate hazard” or “severe hazard” on our website.

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PipoPipo: Super Cute Eco-Friendly Socks for Infants

Screen shot 2013-02-13 at 6.44.39 AMAre you looking for a unique baby shower gift? pipopipo Friends Bamboo Infant Socks are super cute and eco-friendly!

  • Rayon Made from Earth Friendly Sustainable Bamboo
  • Non-Slip Foot Treads
  • Child Safe Materials
  • Reusable Bamboo Package
  • Made from Sustainable Raw Material

These socks are so darn cute, I can see them being a problem for an infant to keep on. They would be excellent for entertaining baby lying on her back reaching for her socks. My babies did this baby yoga anyway to pull off their socks, and they didn’t have cute little critters on them.

As far as bamboo being an eco-friendly fabric, I think the verdict is still out on that one. Unfortunately, strong chemical solvents are used to make fabric from this grass.

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Safety at home: a few simple precautions

child safetySafety at home: a few simple precautions

Children are fragile. They’re susceptible to a lot more illnesses than adults, tend to react more severely when they do catch something, and are easily affected by household dangers. Not to worry though, children are also resilient. A little precaution goes a long way. Here’s how to be aware of the most common household hazards and how to prevent them to create a safe, less accident-prone environment for your family.

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Baby Care: Disney Daily Renewal “Naturals” Contain Synthetic Ingredients

disney not naturalThe world of “natural” skin care is difficult to navigate.  I have reviewed hundreds of products, and yet I still become befuddled by ingredients and marketing terms like “naturals”.

We were recently sent some products I viewed with trepidation, as they bear the Disney label, one of my least favorite companies.  True Disney brought magic to my own childhood and continues to do so for children today, but the marketing of products today goes beyond the magic of Walt envisioned.

We were sent some baby products from Disney’s Daily Renewal Naturals line.

These products, although marketed as “natural”, contain synthetic ingredients.

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Natural Toddler Feeding Made Easy: Happy Family Gluten-Free Organic Superfoods

Screen shot 2013-01-30 at 11.49.44 AMHomemade meals and snacks from whole foods is always best, but it is not always possible or convenient. Fortunately, parents have many choices for feeding their infants and toddlers nutritious, organic food.

One such brand keeping it simple and organic for busy families is Happy Family. From Happy Baby to Happy Tots, all stages of eating and development are covered by this brand of convenience.  Just remember convenience often comes at a cost to the environment and health.

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The Friendliest Materials for Baby’s Bedrooms

Babys RoomThe Friendliest Materials for Baby’s Bedrooms

Did you know that children, especially newborns and infants, are more susceptible to environmental hazards than adults? Did you also know that many of the items harmful to your baby can be found in your baby’s room? More and more studies are being conducted that show everything from the paint on the walls to the crib, mattress and even the supplies used to clean can be hazardous to a baby’s health. Chemicals used in the composition of rugs and common household cleaners have been linked to serious childhood health disorders ranging from asthma to cancer. Certain paints can lead to lead poisoning while the fibres in some mattresses can cause serious skin reactions. With careful attention to the design, materials and maintenance in your baby’s room, you can reduce these risks and provide a healthier, safer environment for your baby to grow in.


Many paints contain volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that give off harmful gases. These gases can remain in the air long after the paint dries. They can also contaminate surrounding items such as furniture and flooring. VOCs produce a number of symptoms in infants and children that range from itchy eyes and runny noses to liver and nervous system damage. Several types of VOCs found in paint have been identified as carcinogens and can lead to cancer in both children and adults. When choosing paint, it is important to avoid paints that list “biocides” or “ethylene glycol ethers” an ingredients. These are toxic solvents that can be especially harmful in pregnant women and young children.
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2 Red Hens Toy Nanny: Is it a blanket? Is it a toy tote? It’s BOTH!

It can be challenging going from play dates to visiting relatives to home with a baby.  When my kids were little, I would stuff a backpack with toys and a blanket, as you never knew what you would need when you are a busy mom with a little one on the go.  A clean blanket is essential, as you want to protect your child from dirty floors or pet hair or a lawn outside.  Toys, of course, are necessary for play so mom can enjoy a cup of coffee or tea while visiting.

2 Red Hens Studio Toy Nanny is a unique item that doubles as both a play mat and a fashionable toy tote:

  • The most ingenious thing to hit the baby market since disposable diapers!
  • This floor blanket quickly cinches up into a toy tote
  • 8 mesh pockets to keep small pieces in place
  • Soft velour interior and water resistant back
  • Hauling toys from Grandmas, to play dates, to the back yard has never been easier

Well, I don’t find disposable diapers ingenious, and I actually take offense at that part of the product description.  I also wish the fabrics were more eco-friendly.

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Why Midwifery Care is So Important [video]