Consumer Reports: Toxic heavy metals found in popular baby foods
A new consumer report released earlier this week warned parents of "troublesome" heavy metals present in well-known brands of baby food.
According to Consumer Reports, 50 types of packaged foods were tested, including cereals and snack bars. Inorganic arsenic, cadmium, and lead were found in some of the samples.
The Chief Scientific officer of Consumer Reports, James Dickerson said: "These heavy metals shouldn't be in food, period."
Read more on our Twitter account, @amomama_usa. Additional details and GMA interview about the report can be found below.
The presence of heavy metals in food is not all that alarming since they can be found in nature, and food can be contaminated through farming processes.
What is concerning is the high levels found in many foods, in some cases up to 68%. Ingesting such high concentrations could increase the long-term risk of developing cancer.
Another shocking statistic is that children ate at least one snack per day of the 15 foods labeled as carrying "potential health risks."
Some of the products on the lists include Gerber, Beech-Nut, Earth's Best Organic, and Happy Bab Organic Superfoods. The complete list can be viewed here.
Parents are advised to assess their child's diet and ensure that it is balanced. Dickerson added:
"If you happen to be giving them a lot of rice-based products, mix in oats or wheat. The idea is balance, not overemphasizing any one particular grain or food.''
Earlier this year, Ritz Cracker Sandwiches and Ritz Bits products were recalled in the States, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.
The products contained salmonella, a microorganism that can cause fever and diarrhea. If not treated, it could prove to be fatal, especially to young children and the elderly.
While no cases of salmonella infections were reported, the company recalled the products as a precautionary measure.
A week after the Ritz scare, Associated Milk Producers recalled their popular microwavable dinner products believing it to be contaminated with salmonella as well.
Warnings were issued to consumers in Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, and Virginia specifically to prevent an outbreak of salmonellosis.