Monday, March 13, 2017

Things to Leave Out of Your Diaper Bag

 While I'm out on blogging maternity leave, today's post is by Sydney of She is sharing tips on a very fitting topic for me right now: diaper bag safety! 

Parents: We always want to do what’s best for our babies. After all, keeping these sweet bundles of joy safe, healthy, and happy is what we strive for as loving parents and caretakers. As a mom or dad, you’re probably aware of the grand selection of new products continuously claiming to be exactly what you need. In terms of safety, one would assume since an item was made for a delicate baby it must be harmless, right? Well, I hate to say it, but that’s far from the truth!

After doing much research, it has been determined that some common baby care products contain nasty, dangerous chemicals. Yikes. Don’t worry though- below is a list of ingredients you can be sure to avoid:

Propylene Glycol (PEG and PPG): Baby wipes (also found in your windshield wiper fluid!)
Triclosan: pacifiers, anything “antibacterial”
Bisphenol-A (BPA): The liquid inside teething rings
Talc: Baby powder
Fragrance (generally made of coal and petroleum derived synthetic chemicals): Disposable diapers, baby powder, baby wash and shampoo, lotions
Formaldehyde: Baby shampoo

While some of these dangers may seem self-explanatory such as Propylene Glycol, or PEG and PPG (cleaning your baby's bum with the same thing you use for cleaning your car windshield!), others still seem innocent and even helpful. Like Triclosan. Before knowing what I know now, I would have naturally chosen an antibacterial product over a non-antibacterial product. The tricky thing about Triclosan is it’s a carcinogenic endocrine disruptor (that’s a mouthful) that also happens to be harmful to the environment. Long story short, let your baby’s system create natural resistance and immunity without the antibacterial products.

Another complex product: Talc. Yes, that’s what’s in fresh-scented baby powder that’s used to treat diaper rash. Unfortunately, studies have found talc to be associated with ovarian cancer and was contaminated with asbestos years ago. Although the asbestos is no longer present in the products sold today, even asbestos-free talc may not be completely safe. To avoid any risk, use talc-free products that contain arrowroot, earth clays, cornstarch, or rice powder, such as Baby Bee's Dusting Powder or Honest Organic Baby Powder.

Now for the formaldehyde. It’s a known human carcinogen- an agent directly involved in causing cancer. Interestingly enough, formaldehyde may not be listed as an ingredient in your baby’s shampoo. So you think: “great, don’t have to worry!”. Well, not quite. Formaldehyde is a sneaky chemical and some products may contain formaldehyde “releasers”. Common ingredients likely to contaminate products with formaldehyde include: Quaternium-15, DMDM hydantoin, Imidazolidinyl urea, Diazolidinyl urea. After some poking around, it looks like Dr. Bronner's Unscented Baby-Mild Pure Castile Soap is a solid choice. Grab it on your next Target run.

You can see that your baby is far better off with minimal intervention from several mainstream baby products. If you see one of these ingredients on your baby’s product, you can easily make a switch. Usually, you can find a decent variety at either your local health food store or just by searching Google. Don’t forget that not all products marked “natural” or “organic” are in fact wholly natural or organic. And when in doubt, double check with your pediatrician. In fact, they probably have some fantastic recommendations!

Sydney is passionate about keeping families safe. She researches and writes about important health topics for, where she focuses on women's and children's health, as well as food allergies.  I'm thankful for her tips and words today!



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