Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Pesticides and Children's IQ

I've been focusing on radiation and Fukushima but pesticides are all too pervasive and have significant effects on us all.

There have been quite a few studies on pesticides and children. In 2000 or 2001, a popular organophosphate pesticide was pulled because it was demonstrated to impact children's developmental milestones. Unfortunately, that class or type of pesticide is still around and commonly applied. Here is a new study on the same class of pesticide:
16 May 2011: Report
From the Fields to Inner City, Pesticides Affect Children’s IQ

"Scientists studying the effects of prenatal exposure to pesticides on the cognitive abilities of children have come to a troubling conclusion: Whether pregnant mothers are exposed to organophosphate pesticides in California fields or New York apartments, the chemicals appear to impair their children’s mental abilities.
by elizabeth grossman

"New York City’s low-income neighborhoods and California’s Salinas Valley, where 80 percent of the United States’ lettuce is grown, could hardly be more different. But scientists have discovered that children growing up in these communities — one characterized by the rattle of subway trains, the other by acres of produce and vast sunny skies — share a pre-natal exposure to pesticides that appears to be affecting their ability to learn and succeed in school.

"Three studies undertaken independently, but published simultaneously last month, show that prenatal exposure to organophosphate pesticides — sprayed on crops in the Salinas Valley and used in Harlem and the South Bronx to control cockroaches and other insects — can lower children’s IQ by an average of as much as 7 points. While this may not sound like a lot, it is more than enough to affect a child’s reading and math skills and cause behavioral problems with potentially long-lasting impacts, according to the studies.

“This is not trivial,” said Virginia Rauh, one of the study authors, speaking from Columbia University, where she is deputy director of the university’s Center for Children’s Environmental Health and professor of population and family health. What is particularly significant, she said, is that these
The New York study found the greater the exposure to pesticides, the greater the impact on cognition.studies involved so many ...

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