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Two Things You Can Do to Combat Lead in Your Baby Food

Savannah Clark's picture
What to do about lead in your baby food

A recent study done by the FDA shows that there is lead in baby food. Here are two things you can do to combat lead in your baby food.


Did you know that there is lead in your baby food?

There was a ten-year study done be the Food and Drug Administration from 2003 to 2013 that collected 2,164 baby food samples. They found 89 percent of grape juice samples, 86 percent of sweet potatoes samples and 47 percent of teething biscuits samples contained detectable levels of lead. This shows that over half of the samples of baby food taken had detectable levels of lead in them. "The levels we found were relatively low, but when you add them up — with all the foods children eat ... it's significant," says study author Tom Neltner of the Environmental Defense Fund. Combine this with the fact that the Center for Disease Control and Prevention says that no safe blood lead level in children has been identified and we have a problem.

What should you do to combat lead in your baby food?

While it’s not clear exactly where the lead is coming from, whether it is from the machines used to make baby food or from the soil that the food is grown in, there are still two things you can do to combat lead in your baby food. You can eat foods that have been shown to help combat lead poisoning and you can consider a different way of weaning your baby, called baby-led weaning.

Why these two things?

Eating a healthy diet full of food that had been proven to help combat lead poisoning can help address the led coming from the environment that the food is being grown in, because unfortunately right now that lead isn’t going anywhere. Baby-led weaning can help combat your child consuming any more lead that is coming from the machines used to create the baby food.

Foods you can eat to help combat lead found in your baby food


Calcium is one of the most important nutrients to combat lead levels in bone, brain and the nervous system. Lead and calcium compete for the same locations within the body and are stored in the bone, though lead has a greater affinity for many calcium binding sites than calcium itself, making the displacement of lead by calcium exceedingly unlikely. So, eating foods high in calcium will help your body stop the absorption of lead. Here are a few foods high in calcium you should incorporate into yours and your child’s diet:

  • Collard greens
  • Broccoli
  • Kale
  • Edamame
  • Figs
  • Oranges

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Working these foods into yours and your child’s diet will really help your body in combating lead found in your baby food.

Iron and Vitamin C

Iron is a key nutrient. It is part of the oxygen- bearing component of red blood cells (haemoglobin), and the prevention of haemoglobin formation by the presence of lead is the primary cause of lead-induced anaemia. Iron works best when there is an abundance of Vitamin C in your body because vitamin C helps with iron absorption. Here is a list of foods that are high in iron:

  • Red meat, pork, and poultry
  • Seafood
  • Beans
  • Dark green leafy vegetables such as spinach

Foods high in Vitamin C:

  • Broccoli
  • Kale
  • Strawberries
  • Red and green bell peppers
  • Brussel Sprouts

Why Baby-led weaning?

If the lead found in baby food is from the machines used to make it, using baby-led weaning’s as your weaning method can help cut that out of your baby’s diet. The way that it can do that is you simply don’t use baby food. Baby will eat what you eat when you eat. You simply prepare a little extra food for your meal that you share with your baby and they learn to eat by watching you. This method skips purees all together so you don’t have to worry about any led that is in jarred baby food.

These two things that you can do to combat lead found in your baby food can help put your mind to ease.