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Old 02-11-2005, 08:50 PM posted to alt.food.vegan
C. James Strutz
 
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Default Interesting article about children and organic foods

Parents Turn to Organic Over Food Fears
http://tinyurl.com/82ojs
"The concern about children is that they are more vulnerable to toxins in
their diets, said Alan Greene, a pediatrician in northern California. As
children grow rapidly, their brains and organs are forming and they eat more
for their size than do grown-ups, Greene said.

"Pound for pound, they get higher concentrations of pesticides than adults
do," said Greene, who promotes organic food in his books and on his Web
site, http://www.drgreene.com.

New government-funded research adds to the concern. A study of children
whose diets were changed from regular to organic found their pesticide
levels plunged almost immediately. The amount of pesticide detected in the
children remained imperceptible until their diets were switched back to
conventional food.

"We didn't expect that to drop in such dramatic fashion," said Emory
University's Chensheng Lu, who led the Environmental Protection
Agency-funded research. Lu's findings will be published in February in the
journal Environmental Health Perspectives."



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Old 03-11-2005, 01:49 AM posted to alt.food.vegan
usual suspect
 
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Default Interesting article about children and organic foods

C. James Strutz wrote:
Parents Turn to Organic Over Food Fears
http://tinyurl.com/82ojs
"The concern about children is that they are more vulnerable to toxins in
their diets, said Alan Greene, a pediatrician in northern California. As
children grow rapidly, their brains and organs are forming and they eat more
for their size than do grown-ups, Greene said.

"Pound for pound, they get higher concentrations of pesticides than adults
do," said Greene, who promotes organic food in his books and on his Web
site, http://www.drgreene.com.


Interesting segue from Dr Greene to "government-funded research" (two
consecutive appeals to authority), but one I've come to expect from
journalists...

New government-funded research adds to the concern.


Not really. Keep reading.

A study of children
whose diets were changed from regular to organic found their pesticide
levels plunged almost immediately. The amount of pesticide detected in the
children remained imperceptible until their diets were switched back to
conventional food.


This is playing fast and loose with the details of Lu's study, which:
1. Measured only TWO conventional pesticides (malathion and chlorpyrifos),
2. Did not attempt to measure any organic pesticides, and
3. Monitored 23 children aged 3-11 over one fifteen-day period.
http://tinyurl.com/czax9

Also, metabolites of various chemicals -- medications, pesticides, etc.
-- rise and fall quickly depending on time of ingestion and/or proximity
and/or dosage. This is hardly newsworthy. For example, one should
expect a patient given medication to have greater levels of the
medicine's metabolites shortly after the medication is taken and for the
metabolite levels to decrease as each dosage wears off. That's why
medications are given in specific-size and -time dosages -- so the serum
levels remain fairly consistent for the duration of treatment. Likewise,
it's not astonishing for children or adults who consume produce with
certain pesticide residues to have a concomitant rise and fall of that
pesticide's metabolites in relation to ingestion of said produce. That's
all Lu found. Yawn.

"We didn't expect that to drop in such dramatic fashion," said Emory
University's Chensheng Lu, who led the Environmental Protection
Agency-funded research. Lu's findings will be published in February in the
journal Environmental Health Perspectives."


It would've been interesting if Lu and his colleagues had tested the
urine samples for metabolites of organic pesticides, not just the two OP
pesticides. I think it would be relevant given the journalist's claim
that Erin O'Neal "is among the increasing number of parents who buy
organic to keep their children's diets *free* of food grown with
pesticides, hormones, antibiotics or genetic engineering." Tests run by
Consumers Union and others have shown that organic foods are indeed
grown with pesticides.

There was no evidence of dangerous levels of OP pesticides in the urine
samples taken by Lu and his colleagues. Personally, I don't find Lu's
research enlightening on the issue for the reasons given above. I can
send daily blood or urine samples for testing to determine which of
supplements I've been taking are working, and how potent they might be;
to see if I've knowingly or unknowingly taken any medications over a
given period (i.e., performance-enhancing drugs like steroids); and to
determine if I've been contact with various chemicals in the environment.

FWIW, the EPA released their Revised Cumulative Risk Assessment
regarding OP pesticides in 2002. In a nutshell, it claims the US food
supply is safe.
http://www.epa.gov/pesticides/cumulative/rra-op/


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