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High Levels of Heavy Metal in Baby Food

Often your baby’s health and safety is mama’s number one concern. A shocking new investigation shows that there are a high level of toxic metal in baby food that are detrimental to baby’s health. Stay tuned to find out more information and what can be done about it! 

 “Dangerous levels of toxic metals like arsenic, lead, cadmium and mercury exist in baby foods at levels that exceed what experts and governing bodies say are permissible” says Democratic Representative Raja Krishnamoorthi of Illinois.

Baby food manufacturers hold a great power of trust from the public. Parents believe that they would not sell products that are unsafe for babies and especially believe that the federal government would not knowingly allow the sale of unsafe baby food. 

But that is sadly not what is going on! 🙁

The Study

Published by the House Oversight and Reform Committee’s Subcommittee on Economic and Consumer Policy 

They tested baby foods from the following Major U.S manufacturers 



Happy Baby

Earth’s Best Organic

Plum Organics

Parents Choice

Sprout Organic Foods

The Results

95% contained lead 

73% contained arsenic

75% contained cadmium 

32% contained mercury

One fourth of the foods contained all four heavy metals.

Foods with the highest risk for neurotoxic harm were found to be:

  • Rice cereal 
  • Rice dishes 
  • Rice teething wafers 
  • Rice puff snacks
  • Fruit juices
  • Sweet potatoes 
  • Carrots 

Why are rice based products the leading food?

Arsenic is a natural element found in soil, water and air, with the inorganic form being the most toxic. 

Because rice is grown in water, it is especially good at absorbing inorganic arsenic and, according to the FDA, has the highest concentration of any food. 

Are the organic options safe?

Studies show that organic options are not safe either.  A common brown rice syrup sweetener, used in organic foods was also found to have high levels of arsenic.

Recommended Safer Alternatives

Snacks: rice-free snacks

Teething foods: frozen banana or a cooled cucumber 

Cereal: oatmeal or multigrain

Drinks: water 

Fruits and vegetables: A wide variety of colorful fruits and vegetables including carrots and sweet potatoes 

What are the effects of toxic metal in baby food?

The consequences for babies are very serious because they are so small. 

Even low levels of exposure can cause serious and often irreversible damage to brain development. 

The amount of neurotoxins that they are being exposed to in these foods is much higher than what is considered safe for adults! And babies only weigh a few pounds. 

From conception to the age of two babies brains are growing and developing at a very rapid rate. These toxic heavy metals endanger their neurological development and long-term brain function 

These impacts build upon each other with each meal and snack that the baby eats. 

The study states that exposure to these toxic heavy metals 

  • Causes permanent decreases in IQ
  • Diminished future economic productivity
  • Increases risk of future criminal and antisocial behavior in children

The US Food and Drug Administration:

The FDA is responsible for the safety and security of our nation’s food supply.

In response to the congressional study, they have acknowledged that there are high levels of toxic metal in baby food and that more needs to be done to lower these levels because the effects are significant.


They are still allowing manufacturers to test and report the levels of these metals in the ingredients of the baby food and not the finished product.

And they still have not set a maximum level for heavy metals in baby foods.

Comparing Set Standards

For our example, we are going to compare the set standard for bottled drinking water to the set standard for infant rice cereal. Keep in mind that bottled water is for adults and the infant rice cereal is obviously for infants. 

Infant rice cereal has 

177 times the lead level

91 times the inorganic arsenic level

69 times the cadmium level

5 times the mercury level

Then bottled water does. WHAT!?

These are babies we are talking about. Little, tiny, precious babies, and this is what is allowed in their food!!? 

I’m so extremely disturbed! 

Urgent Action Needed

The FDA must require mandatory testing of the finished products and not just the ingredients. There should be labels on foods that report the levels of heavy toxic metals- especially baby foods! If products or ingredients are naturally high in heavy metals, such as rice, they should not be used in baby food.

The FDA should set standards for heavy metals in all baby products.

Parents trust that the food that is made for their babies is safe for them to consume. Finding out this kind of information is so heartbreaking. I cried all afternoon.

Make your own baby food!

There are plenty of baby food makers on the market that allow for easy cooking, blending, and cleaning. Making your own baby food will give you a piece of mind and you will not have to worry about what your baby is being exposed to. In this article we discussed all of the reasons you should not feed your baby food from leading manufacturers. Until these issues are settled and the FDA does better, I highly suggest you make your own baby food!

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