A new study shows that pesticides on fruits and vegetables could boost the chances that children will be diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD.
The study was conducted by researchers at the University of Montreal in Quebec and Harvard University, and recently published in Pediatrics, the official journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics. It found that in the 1,100 children whose urine was tested for pesticide residue, particularly from the widely used insecticide malathion, children with higher-than-average levels of pesticide residue were nearly twice as likely to be diagnosed with ADHD as children who showed no traces of pesticide.
The take-home message for parents according to Maryse F. Bouchard, one of the lead authors of the study and a researcher at the University of Montreal, is to "buy organic as much as possible... I would also recommend washing fruits and vegetables as much as possible."
Food and diet is a major source of pesticide exposure in children and adults. The best way to avoid pesticide exposure is to make sure to buy organic for the Dirty Dozen, or a list of the fruits and vegetables that are grown with high pesticide usage:
** View the full list from the Environmental Working Group here!
For More Reading:
• Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder and Urinary Metabolites of Organophosphate Pesticides, published online May 17, 2010 in Pediatrics
• Pesticides in Kids Linked to ADHD, from MSNBC
• Study Links Pesticides to ADHD, from The Daily Green
(Image: Pinch My Salt)