• Kids

5 ways to reduce your child’s toxic load

For happy bodies and brains 


By Erica Watson 

The idea for Green + Simple came about from a simple conversation about baby wipes. We were lamenting that although labels boasted buzzwords like ‘natural’ and even ‘organic’, a quick squiz of the ingredients listed on the packet pointed to anything but. The fact is, we live in a world filled with toxins and chemicals – and some – like air quality for example can be difficult to avoid. But there are ways we can reduce the amount and types of toxins we (and our children) are exposed to. We recently chatted with nutritionist and author, Dr Sarah Lantz, who gave us her tips for reducing your child’s toxic load.   

Become a conscious consumer

Finding out exactly what you’re putting in your trolley or bringing into your home is critical in ensuring you’re using the cleanest products for your family. 

“Ask questions before buying,” says Sarah who recommends ticking these questions off your list whenever you’re making a purchase:

     – Is this product made in line with my values? 

     – Does it contain hazardous chemicals? 

     – What is the environmental impact of this product? Or my health? 

     – Will it accumulate in my body? 

     – Can it be excreted?

Be a chemical detective

Read labels and challenge assumptions when it comes to products, the companies producing them and the governing bodies regulating them, Sarah advises. 

“Knowing some of the health implications of chemicals is a significant step towards healthy living,” she explains. 

She recommends purchasing from certified organic companies (look specifically for certification labels and not just marketing claims) and familiarise yourself with a good chemical database (like EWG).

“Personal care and cosmetics should be as pure as the foods we eat,”  Sarah says.

Create a toxin free home

“The environment we create for our children has a profound effect on every facet of their development,” Sarah says. 

“Consider what’s in your pantry, your shed, your cleaning products and your personal care products.”

Eat for wellness

Whether it’s your local café, supermarket or farmer’s market, Sarah says it’s important to engage in dialogue around your ethical concerns, needs and requirements when it comes to purchasing food. “Talk to the owners,” she says. 

“Your request makes ethical products and foods more available to others and alerts them to customer needs and requirements.”

Demand protective policies

“There is currently no specific policy on children’s environmental health in Australia,” Sarah says adding that many chemicals that are banned in other countries are still being consumed in Australia such as BPA (Bisphenol A), Phthalates, some flame-retardants, food colourings and preservatives. She says it’s up to all of us to demand more rigorous laws for chemicals prior to their use. 

Dr Sarah Lantz is a business owner, nutritionist, writer, author, mother. She has been an ambassador for Australian Certified Organic (ACO) and the Australian Chemical Free Community, and an ongoing active member of Slow Food Australia. 

Related: 5 zero-waste snacks for kids 

Related: Natural fertility tips according to the experts 



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