I’m a mother of two boys, one 8 and one 16 months. I do the best I can. I try to feed my boys a healthy and well balanced diet. I conscientiously serve meals to provide the best nutrition, with a picky eater, that has been very challenging! My journey has been a slow one. It began a few years ago when I noticed my younger sister using Aveeno for her daughter’s bath. We had a quick conversation about our childrens’ eczema and she recommended that try it. I was using Johnson & Johnson Head to Toe since I brought my son home from the hospital 5 years earlier. I bought Aveeno and also switched our laundry detergent to All Free and Clear from Tide. Up to this point, my son always seemed to be sick. He was always coughing, he had eczema in the crook of both arms that he would itch till bleeding, I believed he had exercise-induced or some preliminary form of asthma. He had pneumonia twice, strep, countless respiratory viruses, and was on numerous antibiotics through all of this. I was shocked that a baby could get so sick, but was told that babies just get sick all the time.
The day I made those minor changes was the last day I can remember seeing the eczema, it cleared up right away. The colds lessened in frequency and intensity. I didn’t hear my child coughing as much as I used to. I realized that by changing two things in my house, I had made a major impact on my child’s health. As relieved as I was, I was also devastated. How could I have done such a thing to my child, and why more importantly, did I not know about it?
So here I am on this journey, learning something new every single day. It was very slow in the beginning. I thought it was more of a lifestyle choice, not a necessity. While I’ve been learning about the chemicals in our household products, I stumbled across something even bigger that is in a majority of the food we eat, Genetically Modified Organisms or GMOs.
“GMOs are plants or animals created through the gene splicing techniques of biotechnology. This experimental technology merges DNA from different species. Virtually all commercial GMOs are engineered to withstand direct application of herbicide and/or to produce an insecticide. Most developed nations do not consider GMOs to be safe.”
I didn’t know anything about this, never heard of it at all, but for the last 16 years, I’ve been eating GMO foods. I then watched videos
and even went to a seminar,
and I’ve realized today that I have not only been hurting myself by eating this food, but I’ve passed it onto my boys as well. My 16 month old son has just eaten GMO formula for 12 months straight, it being his only food source in the first 6 months of his life. I didn’t buy the store brand, I paid for the most expensive brand, thinking I was doing the best I could, even if it meant stressing about bills. Here I am believing in it, not knowing for a second that this could hurt my child. Upon finding out about what was really in his formula, I was shocked and furious. Moms should know and have every right to know what is in the formula they feed their babies.
Millions of dollars have been spent to stop that legislation proposed in California that would make it mandatory to label GMO foods. http://www.carighttoknow.org/
We need to stop assuming that when something is approved by the FDA or regulated by the EPA, that it is safe. I’ve learned along the way that it is up to me to figure out what I’m bringing home from the store. We need to find out where we can make healthier purchases for our babies and it has to be within our means. Those options are out there.
And we have to start talking to each other about this, at the playground and in our social groups. We need to understand why it’s so important. Think of the drastic increase in all the diseases and chronic illnesses over the last few decades… it’s got to make you wonder. Could it be what we eat, the products we use on our bodies, the cleaning supplies we use to keep our homes germ free?
Do this for your family, your brothers and sisters and their families, your mom and your dad. When people say we ate all this and we’re fine, remind them that this is new, only 16 years ago the first seed was introduced into our food supply. Read what you can, and make up your own mind. There are tons of sources online, from the nytimes.com to the non-profits trying desperately to get this message out. Once you start reading the articles, blogs, and watching the videos, you will have a better understanding and be able to make much better choices for your children.
Download the TrueFood app to find out where you can buy non GMO foods.
I also have the GoodGuide app for home and beauty products.
Moms should know that milk is not purely milk anymore, that soy is not simply soy, and that sugar is being replaced with corn and soy derived sweeteners, none of which have ever been tested or regulated. And yet these GMOs are trusted enough to put in our bodies without understanding the long term affects. Find out for yourself, make informed choices, and most importantly have fun in the journey.