Pesticides and ADHD acronymmy things

Well, this is shocking…by which I mean, “THIS IS COMPLETELY UN-SHOCKING!”

(Line courtesy of Dr. Doofenschmirtz, for those of you in households where your children do not clamor to watch “Phineas and Ferb” every waking hour of the day…)

On Non-Toxic Kids (love her blog, by the way–when I have 936 pending messages in my Google Reader, she’s one of the ones I go to first to actually read, while my Grist and Tree-Hugger feeds just pile up more and more…)

Pesticides Linked to ADHA, New Study Finds (more reasons to eat organic!)

This is the kind of thing that, to me, makes perfect sense, and is a really good reason to not necessarily assume because someone’s marketing department–or even the FDA, CDC, or whatever government acronym you choose–says it’s safe.  Because the marketing departments have a vested interest in it, and the goverment organizations can’t say a damn thing unless the unsafety has been scientifically proven beyond a shadow of a doubt.  Which is to say, unless someone has been willing to pay large amounts of money (which the government doesn’t have or spend) to do transparent and obvious studies and come to undeniable conclusions that are so undeniable that the marketers can’t refute them with their own studies “proving” the safety of the product, they can’t say a damn thing.  When the government says “this is safe,” they usually mean “our studies haven’t proved that it’s unsafe.”  Which, to me, is a completely different thing.

Like bug repellents–last summer I remember being aghast that the government was able to say with certitude that Picaridin, an ingredient currently used in a lot of DEET-free bug sprays, has not been demonstrated to be unsafe–but that there haven’t been enough studies on lemon eucalyptus oil to say the same thing.

So…anyway…if pesticides work by disrupting the insects’ neurological systems, how huge a stretch is it anyway to wonder if long-term exposure, in utero and out, to similar pesticides might possibly have some vague connection to neurological disruption in humans? Hmm?

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Posted on May 25, 2010, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. Christian saw this report the other day. I hate washing fruit, but after that I admit I did wash the strawberries. Yikes! I really appreciate my home-grown strawberries this year!

  2. I read the study with a great amount of interest. However, I have a lot of problems with the conclusions they drew from it. First and most importantly _The researchers never checked what the children in the study ate_. No food diaries, Nothing. They found a correlation in the ADHD kids and the pesticide marker. But good researchers will tell you that correlation is not causation!

    It’s compelling evidence for further study because there are a lot of unanswered questions. What if the ADHD kids ate an organic diet? We don’t know because they NEVER ASKED WHAT THE KIDS ATE. What about family ties – often an ADHD kid has an ADHD parent? What about families that have one ADHD kid and one not – which also happens in families? Surely both kids have the same access to the same foods.

    The report arbitrarily mentions strawberries, blueberries and celery. Strawberries and blueberries are very seasonal fruits and what kid eats tons of celery on their own? Some in the study may have avoided feeding these foods to their children because they wanted to avoid the possibly of pesticides. Why were these foods and not the rest of the Dirty Dozen called out? I suspect that someone involved in organic blueberries, strawberries, and celery funded the study.

    We don’t know because we have no idea what the kids did or did not eat. It’s possible the ADHD kids got the pesticides in utero but again no one asked those questions either. I hope there is a follow up because we need to know if there is another way those of us who try to avoid eating food grown with pesticides may have the residues in our bodies.

  3. Condo, good points all. But what has me happy is that finally there’s a study compelling enough to incite further and better study. It’s a first step.
    –Jenn

  1. Pingback: Another interesting post… « Too Much Sense

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