Pediatricians say certain chemicals might have a range of side effects, especially for children
Recommendations urge reducing canned food consumption and avoid microwaving plastic
A leading US medical organization representing more than 60,000 pediatricians recommends parents and children avoid certain chemicals used in food processing and called for the government to adjust its methods of deeming substances to be safe.
A policy statement published Monday by the American Academy of Pediatrics says that the regulatory framework for certain chemicals is antiquated and based on an outdated understanding of science.
An accompanying technical report cites mounting evidence of negative health effects in children from chemicals added to food in processing, such as flavoring and coloring, and substances indirectly affecting food through packaging and manufacturing, such as adhesives and coatings.
The report features “some striking and surprising concerns about the lack of attention that these chemicals have received by regulatory agencies,” said Dr. Leonardo Trasande, director of the Division of Environmental Pediatrics at New York University School of Medicine and lead author of the statement and report.
“Pound for pound, children eat more food and therefore have a higher level of exposure compared to us adults,” Trasande said. “In addition, their developing organ systems are uniquely vulnerable. …There can be fundamental disruptions in various endocrine functions that can manifest not only in early childhood but potentially in later life as a result of prenatal or infant exposure.”