Protecting children from harmful chemicals

Pediatrician Jay Gordon, MD, shares advice for parents on where chemicals that are harmful for children can be found and what to do to protect your child from harmful chemicals
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Protecting children from harmful chemicals


There are about 80,000 chemicals used in America in manufacturing and household use. And about 3,000 of them have been tested for safety. In other words, there is about 77,000 chemicals in our clothes, in our toys, in our food, in agriculture, in manufacturing that have not been tested for safety in children. So what I ask parents to do, is to avoid pesticides. If you don't like spiders, step on them. Take them outside. It's more humane. Buy wooden toys instead of plastic toys whenever you can. When you're purchasing cleaning products, turn them around. If you look at some of the best products, the best dish soaps, if you turn them around and look at the label it said: if ingested drink a glass of water, you could have figured that out. You can buy other cleaning products that say: if ingested call poison control immediately, you don't want those in your house. You want to minimize a child's exposure to pesticides. To cleaning products that could be toxic. To plastics. To dry cleaning solutions that could be toxic. There are a lot of things going wrong right now with children's brains. Everything from autism to ADD and the strong suspicion is that it may have to do with toxic chemicals in our environment. Avoid them as best as you can.

Pediatrician Jay Gordon, MD, shares advice for parents on where chemicals that are harmful for children can be found and what to do to protect your child from harmful chemicals


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Jay Gordon, MD


Jay Gordon, MD, FAAP, IBCLC - In the middle of his residency training, pediatrician Jay Gordon took an unusual step. Deciding that he needed greater knowledge about nutrition, vitamins, and alternative medicine in order to practice medicine the way he wanted to, Dr. Gordon took a Senior Fellowship in Pediatric Nutrition at Sloan-Kettering Institute in New York City. After his residency at Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles, Dr. Gordon joined the teaching attending faculty at UCLA Medical Center and Cedars-Sinai Medical Center.

Intensely interested in infant nutrition and breastfeeding, Dr. Gordon is the first male physician to sit for and pass the International Board of Lactation Certification Exam and has served on the Professional Advisory Board of La Leche League for 24 years.

In addition to treating patients, he participates in the training of medical students and residents, lectures all over the world, writes books, and writes a monthly column for “Fit Pregnancy” magazine. He has contributed to “New York Parent,” “Parenting” magazine and has been quoted in the L.A. Times, New York Times, and The London Times.

Dr. Gordon’s first book, the well-received Good Food Today, Great Kids Tomorrow, offers a life-changing plan for families who want to make dramatic changes in health and fitness through nutrition. Brighter Baby examines the positive effect that attachment parenting, combined with infant massage, has on children’s health and intelligence. Other releases include: Good Night! The Parents’ Guide to the Family Bed and Hug Your Baby, a Gentle Guide through the First Year, which was released summer, 2002. He also authored Listening To Your Baby: A New Approach to Parenting Your Newborn, which still gets great reviews from parents. His most recent book is The ADD and ADHD Cure, the Natural Way to Treat Hyperactivity and Refocus Your Child.

When the American Academy of Pediatrics’ Committee on Television and the Media named Dr. Gordon “the most influential doctor in America,” they were referring, tongue-in-cheek, to Dr. Gordon’s role, as the medical script consultant, in eliminating lollipops from the office of “Doctor Weston,” lead character on the sitcom “Empty Nest.”

After two years of consulting on television scripts, sets, and ideas, Dr. Gordon was named CBS TV’s Medical Consultant for Children’s programming. He also worked for five years on ABC Television as the on-air medical correspondent for the “Home Show,” and continues to consult regularly for television and movies. He’s appeared on Fox 11 News, ABC’s 20/20 and most recently on Larry King Live. 

Dr. Gordon contributed and wrote the forward to Smart Medicine for a Healthy Child and The Encyclopedia of Vitamins and Supplements (both published in 1999), is pediatric consultant for “Fit Pregnancy” magazine and a frequent contributor to “Parents,” “Parenting,” and other media outlets.
 Busy as he is, Dr. Gordon finds that his most challenging job is “being a good husband and the best possible parent to my 22 year-old daughter.”

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