She Says… Preparations of Global Proportions

Do you know what is the food at the top of the food chain with the highest levels of many toxic contaminants? Human breast milk. That means that we have reached a point where the smallest members of our societies — our babies — are getting their highest lifetime dose of toxic chemicals from breastfeeding from their mothers. Is that not an incredible violation? — Story of Stuff

I guess I should start by saying that I am not posting this to scare people about breastfeeding. I totally believe that breast is best, as they say, and it’s perfectly safe to breastfeed. I hope that I get to do it someday. However, that statement (made in this interesting video; transcript with sources and footnotes is here) shocked me, and made me think very hard about the toxin-laden world in which we live.

We shouldn’t have to worry about whether the products we buy are safe, but we do. Why? Because there is growing evidence that everyday consumer products we buy for our homes and families are tainted with chemicals that cause birth defects, reproductive, developmental, and behavioral harm, and even cancer. It’s an outrage. And we want to do something about it. — MOMS (Making Our Milk Safe)

Even though I’m not a mother (yet) and have no reason to be worrying about breast milk, I still worry about the amount of unnecessary chemicals that I am exposed to every day. And although I can’t change the world’s natural resource extraction or the chemicals “they” insist on putting into products, I can control what I buy. And what I eat. And how I dispose of my trash.

We have to prepare the world to be around for our kids. And prepare our kids to take care of the world. But it’s a preparation that has to start right here, right now. Even though I don’t have kids yet.

So, as they say, I’m putting my money where my mouth is, and “voting” with my grocery shopping. We shop almost exclusively at Whole Foods now to make a statement about how much we value sustainable business practices and chemical-free foods. Even though it’s a little more expensive (although I have become QUITE the pro at maximizing the budget and planning every meal), it’s totally worth it to me. Tonight we will pick up our hormone-free, nitrate-free, free range turkey for Thanksgiving. And I’m sure I will swallow hard when I see that grocery bill. But really, what’s a few more dollars if it means the baby I hope I’m growing can develop free from harmful chemicals and fake ingredients? It seems a small price to pay.

Do you eat organic or sustainably grown foods? Why or why not? Those of you trying to conceive, have you changed your eating habits at all to “prepare”?

P.S. TWO MORE DAYS UNTIL THE BIG DAY! What? Didja think I forgot?!

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17 responses to “She Says… Preparations of Global Proportions

  1. A great topic, can’t wait to hear more….and you are in my thoughts and prayers this week!

  2. 2 more days!!
    I didn’t have to change my eating habits when we started TTC. I have been a health nut for a while!
    Fingers crossed for you!

  3. I have been trying my best to eat organic for the past 2 months, but the closest Whole Foods is quite far away – like 45 mins. I’ve been buying everything I can possibly get as organic at the regular grocery stores, but there isn’t a great variety.

    I need to look for online organic places and see if it can be delivered. But then that could be crazy expensive. If only whole foods would build a store 10 mins away….

    Hope it’s good news later this week!

  4. I was wondering about you guys! It’s kind of odd to have it suddenly occur to me at a random time of the day to check if someone I don’t know is still having high temperatures, but there you have it. That being said – I’m glad things are still looking so great!!

  5. Hehe, I saw this post and thought, “What? Where’s all of the news and excitement and nervousness of the upcoming big day??!”

    Thinking of you and sending good thoughts your way!!

  6. I recently watched The Story of Stuff in a class I’m taking this quarter. We’re reading a book- Exposed by Mark Schapiro, if you liked that movie you’d love his book. It’s a quick, easy read and very eye opening to a LOT of the different toxins that we’re exposed to!

  7. I’m a big healthy eater, but darn if our Whole Foods isn’t crazy expensive! We make so much of what we eat from scratch…pizza dough, bread, tomato sauce, even mayo! I don’t need the yucky preservatives and chemicals in the store-bought versions. Plus, the real thing tastes way better!

    There will be no whammies for you on Wednesday, my friend. Yoga breathing until then!! :)

  8. Erin, Thank you! If I see what I’m hoping to see, you may get a phone call early on Wednesday morning!!!

    Courtney, That is awesome. I didn’t either, although I have shifted to organic produce to reduce the amount of preservatives and chemicals I put in my body. Good stuff! I hear women complaining all the time about how awful it is to have to cut caffeine or eat more vegetables because they are pregnant. Umm, hello, you probably should have been doing that before anyway!

    Al, I know what you mean — it’s definitely more expensive, and would really be inconvenient if I didn’t have a good grocery store near me! The online places may be a good option, though. Good luck!

    Anonymous, That is so sweet! Thank you :) All of this is a bit odd (that I share the intimate details of my reproductive system with the entire internet), but I totally appreciate that you wanted to check on us! Hopefully we’ll have fantastic news to share tomorrow.

    Stef, Ha! Believe me, I can barely think about anything else… but there’s not much to say until we get the news tomorrow…

    Ann, Ooh, thanks for the recommendation! I will definitely check that out.

    suchagoodegg, You ARE a good egg! That is so awesome that you even make your own mayo! I make all of those other things, but I’ve never tried mayo. Then again, we don’t really eat mayo, but I want to try to make it anyway! I totally agree — no chemicals often equals MUCH better taste. I would rather have 3 huge bowls of salad and hummus and yogurt than one little powerbar thankyouverymuch. I really, really, really hope you’re right about tomorrow. Yoga breathing has begun! So has the countdown to peeing on a stick! HOLYCRAP.

  9. That’s a huge reason (that and the endo) why I started eating so healthy (local, organic, non-processed foods) 3 years ago, as well as started using non-toxic cosmetics and household cleaning products. I was worried about the health of our future children (and mine of course).

    Making from scratch and ditching the “prepared” foods, organic or not, is a great way to minimize the cost of eating better.

  10. We try to shop somewhat organically, but there isn’t a lot available where we live. I wish we could shop at whole foods, but it is almost an hour away from our house, which is just too far to go to the grocery!

  11. Sarah, good for you! That’s so true, too — it costs much less to buy whole ingredients than it does to buy processed food. That’s one way that, even though we’re shopping at Whole Foods, our grocery bill hasn’t gone sky high. We’re making almost everything ourselves! It’s awesome. There’s a huge part of me that would love to leave the city and live on a farm and sustain myself and my family without buying anything. But alas, there are too many things I would miss! I love my urban life.

    Casey, Yes, that makes it very tough, I can imagine! I hope they open one soon, or at least that you have CSA’s or other options available!

  12. Good luck tomorrow – I will be sending lots of good virtual thoughts your way!!!

    And, I agree, organic is best. Luckily our nearest grocery store (one block away) is a Whole Foods. Although it’s not kind to the wallet! I do love their produce and meats/fish. It’s just so much better there.

  13. Good luck tomorrow Kate! I hope your temp is high and you get that positive UPT! Thinking of you……

  14. I just wanted to tell you good luck tomorrow morning. I will be thinking about you. No matter what the outcome tomorrow, it WILL happen for you. I am living proof of that. It took me and my husband 3 years. If I never see a thermometer, an ovulation strip, or a pregnancy test again, I will be a happy woman. All the hard work paid off though, I am 23 weeks pregnant now with a perfect little boy. It happened for us and it will for you. *Hugs*

  15. We used to do our weekly grocery shopping at WF, but after our son was born, between daycare costs and diapers, we’re on a strict budget and can’t afford “Whole Paycheck” unless it’s for a special occasion. :( We do try to buy organic at our local grocery store, but it’s not always possible.

  16. This is a great post, and extremely eye-opening. I try to stay away from harsh chemicals, pesticides, and especially antibiotics by buying organic meats and dairy products, cleaning with “safe” products, and eliminating most plastic from our house. It’s crazy what’s in shower cleaners, plastic tupperware, and even our cosmetics.
    Good luck with everything – I just viewed your “we’re pregnant” video and though I didn’t expect it I shed a few tears. You two are wonderful and deserve the best!

  17. romancingthestone

    Thanks for the post! I do try to eat healthy and joing a CSA farmshare has really helped me! The groceries show up every week, so you wind up replacing your junky food with these lovely healthy veggies.I think we are in the same farm share, right? Best wishes to you and B. Shell

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