I delivered week two of food to my friend last night. We got to catch up. Mom looks great! I had a perfect wintery night chatting in the kitchen; a cup of tea in one hand and a three week old sleeping on my chest for a few hours. My friend and I will always discuss health, healing and wellness and other silly things. I’ve not had my own child, yet have a wealth of information from my stint as a nanny, as a day care teacher, and always as a friend of a new mom. She had a doozy for me this time.
First, the little guy gained a half a pound his first week. According to the pediatrician that’s unheard of for an exclusively breast fed baby but other healthy friends’ MDs said the same thing. Next, the doctor shared that Vitamin D is missing from breast milk. That’s not exactly true. Yes, I know it is winter and I know we live in that northern area most deficient of Vitamin D. My friend does give the little one daily sun baths which definitely compensates, and thanks to his fair skin tone he needs less than 2 hours each week of sun exposure. Regardless, the pediatrician prescribed infant Vitamin D drops. Vitamin D is sort of like the missing link in the body’s absorption of calcium and phosphorus. The doctors are concerned about bone and heart health. The prescription remained unfilled, but when the now 3 week old started with a few sniffles Dad picked it up from the pharmacy.
When mom looked at the ingredients, she was shocked. Should I really knowingly give my child methylparaben, polysorbate 80, sodium hydroxide, red food dye, and caramel coloring just to get a dose of Vitamin D? Am I being a negligent mom by knowingly depriving my child of a vitamin or by knowingly feeding my child synthetics? Many of my friends have chosen to postpone or abstain from all vaccinations. That is a personal educated choice. Children’s immune systems are fully intact by age two. My personal choice would be to keep their systems clean and pure of synthetics at least until that age. Most of my friends have chosen to use only glass bottles, natural cloth diapers, organic pesticide-free food, and all those other good things. Here blatantly on a label for all to see are chemicals preserving and coloring a vitamin easily sourced from the sun, oily fish and fish oils and fortified milk.
First of all, red food dye and caramel coloring is apparently to appease the parents’ vision and palatability because a 3 week old isn’t seeing much right now. Caramel coloring is an emulsifier as is Polysorbate 80 – keeps the ingredients combined. Polysorbate 80 is a common emulsifier in cosmetics, vitamins, vaccines and even ice cream and milk products and has been proven to damage fertility. Sodium hydroxide is a pH buffer. Hello, if you didn’t use synthetic ingredients you wouldn’t need to buffer the medication.
Then comes the methyl paraben. I understand medicine needs preservatives but there are natural alternatives like soy lecithin and beeswax. Parabens offer an inexpensive way to increase the shelf life of products and to inhibit the growth of bacteria, molds and yeasts even though they are known to be highly toxic. Scientific studies have found that parabens have the potential to cause cancer. The estrogen activity of this ingredient has been directly linked to the development of certain cancers, including breast, prostate, ovarian, and uterine.
Health conscious folk have been lobbying for years to have laureth sulfates, parabens, and phlatates removed from personal care products. Product ingredients can be searched on cosmeticdatabase.com and the site includes a risk ranking and the effects the ingredient has on the body. Cosmetic companies have made some changes but for the most part, consumers are absorbing chemicals with every use. Unfortunately, I found no resources for medications free of synthetics.