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Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Replacing the Mother: Dangers of DHA & ARA in Formula

Yesterday I was commenting on a Facebook group about the dangers of DHA & ARA additives in Infant formula. Last night as I wandered through the grocery store I stopped in the infant formula aisle and curiosity go the better of me:  I HAD to look! WOW! Do you know I couldn't find a single infant formula that did NOT contain added DHA & ARA?!?  I know that some parents might be fooled by the marketing ploy of the infant formula manufacturers with their fancy health claims "closer than ever to breastmilk"  because DHA & ARA are naturally occurring in human breastmilk.  The marketing is sneaky and underhanded and designed for one purpose only:  To sell more formula.

Even the FDA refuses to say that DHA & ARA oils added to infant formula been proven to be safe.
"The FDA did not affirm the safety of Martek’s DHASCO and ARASCO for use in infant formula. Among its reasons: stud-ies showing adverse events including diarrhea in infants."

The quote below is from an extensive pdf document put out by the Cornucopia Institute.  It gives extensive information about the so-called DHA and ARA that is being added to infant formulas-which at the time including organic formulas- and discusses the process that is used to create these chemicals, the marketing effect on the general public, the illegal aspects of the usage of these chemicals in organic products, the studies that disprove the formula companies claims and show the dangers of these additives.  Recently the USDA has banned the use of these chemical oils DHA & ARA in organic labled products.

If you know anyone using infant formulas to feed or supplement their babies, please be sure to pass this information to them. Print off a copy of the pdf document and take it in to your doctor, your midwife, your local hospital, and public health offices: Every parent needs to be aware of the dangers of these chemicals and medical personnel that parents might turn to for information on supplementing and formula feeding need to be fully informed to be able to give their advice. 

Replacing Mother — Imitating Human Breast Milk in the Laboratory
Novel Oils in Infant Formula and Organic Foods:
Safe and Valuable Functional Food or Risky Marketing Gimmick?

Babies who are fed infant formula with Martek’s DHASCO and ARASCO are consuming novel foods, never before incorporated into the human diet, which are extracted with the use of the toxic chemical hexane. DHASCO and ARASCO are derived from fermented algae and fungus.
While allowed on the market, the FDA has not approved or affirmed the safety of DHASCO and ARASCO that are added to infant formula. Scientists and pediatricians question the adequacy of the premarket testing that was performed on DHASCO and ARASCO for infant formula, and the National Academies of Sciences has published these concerns.
While infant formula manufacturers claim that DHASCO and ARASCO are “proven to aid in brain and eye development,”171 scientists do not agree—DHA and ARA in a mother’s breast milk may benefit brain and eye development, but studies on adding DHASCO and ARASCO to formula show inconsistent and inconclusive results.
To extract DHASCO and ARASCO, Martek uses hexane, a toxic chemical by-product of gasoline refining that is classified by the EPA as a toxic pollutant.172 Martek also claims that it has developed an extraction process that does not use hexane but has been unwilling to say anything more on the subject. Trace amounts of hexane have been detected in some foods where it has been used as a processing agent. Adequate testing has not taken place to determine whether this is a risk to infants, children, or adults.
The National Organic Program regulations prohibit ingredients that are extracted with organic solvents such as hexane, nor do the regulations allow the inclusion of “by-products of microorganisms” in organic foods. The Cornucopia Institute has filed a complaint with the USDA, alleging that the addition of Martek’s DHASCO and ARASCO to organic foods is a violation of the national organic standards.
Most importantly, this report provides an alternative source of information regarding DHASCO and ARASCO in infant formula for parents, children’s caretakers, and medical professionals. Infant formula manufacturers have consistently given only one side of this story; claims that DHASCO and ARASCO make formula “closer than ever to breast milk” and have been “proven to aid in brain and eye development” abound, while making no mention of safety concerns regarding the oils themselves and the possible processing contaminants. Moreover, members of the scientific community doubt the benefits to infant development of adding DHASCO and ARASCO to infant formula. Parents and caretakers who are either considering switching to infant formula or are already feeding their infants formula can use this report to make more informed health and nutritional decisions on behalf of their babies.

 Click HERE to read the entire report by the Cornucopia Institute

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Milk for Baby Jayden

This is an amazing story of baby Jayden who is alive today because of the generous moms who've donated their breastmilk.  Please forward this story to as many people as possible- especially if you are in the Michigan area.

Our Little Miracle, and How Breastmilk is Saving Her Life

Jayden at 10 weeks.  Blind and Deaf.

PictureJayden was born cocaine and alcohol addicted, with congenital syphilis, at 31 weeks gestation. She had no skin on the palms of her hands or feet and had to have skin grafts. They could find no formula that Jayden could tolerate well, but settled on the one that she had the "least severe reaction to."

 When she was about eight weeks old, she was assigned a foster parent, who came to do kangaroo care with her for eight days before she took her home.  Jayden was completely blind and profoundly deaf, and would need to be accustomed to "mom's" smell and touch before they sent her home. When she went home, she was the most critical discharge they have ever had from that NICU, which routinely sees the sickest of babies.  Basically, with tears in their eyes, the nurses sent Jayden home to die. Jayden was insulin dependant (with critically unstable blood sugars, typically either below 60 or above 400), on oxygen 24 hours a day, and set off her apnea monitor 6-10 times a day. In order to set off a monitor, she would have to not breathe for many seconds at a time. She had gained and lost the same three ounces since birth, and was no more than four and a half pounds.
 Her foster mother asked over and over again of anybody who had authority why this baby couldn't be on breastmilk, shouldn't this baby be on breast milk, what did she have to do to get this baby on breastmilk? Over and over, she was basically told that this was a medicaid baby and that the state wouldn't PAY for banked milk (which costs a minimum of 4 dollars an ounce, and has been pasteurized) for a MEDICAID baby. Finally, one day, when Jayden was literally activly dying, an infectious disease doctor looked at her foster mom (who is a friend of mine because of foster work and doula work) and said, "I won't tell you NOT to give her breastmilk. We know that it would give her the best chance!" So, we got her some frozen breastmilk.

 With her first bottle of human milk, Jayden's blood sugar regulated.  She is typically somewhere around 120 now. Within the first three weeks, she regained her sight and hearing. Her new pediatrician says that when somebody is actively dying their brain will shut off all non-essential functions--and hearing and sight are non-essential functions. The first week on breastmilk she started to only set off her apnea monitor during the night's deepest sleep...and only then typically once a night. Within three weeks, they took it off of her completely, because she just didn't set it off any more. The first week she gained and KEPT ON four ounces. The next week three. The next week SEVEN.  At this point, the new pediatrician put her arms around the Foster Mom's shoulders and said, "If you hadn't given that baby human milk when you did, she would be dead today.  You are a hero."  Eight weeks later she had gained nearly four pounds. When she was nearly nine and a half months old she was eleven and a half pounds! We now have full cooperation with her new pediatrician and the state to give her donated human milk, no questions asked.

After about six weeks on human milk.

Picture We have tried her on formula again, and on "extra calories" breastmilk boosters several times, to see what would happen should we run out of breastmilk. The baby immediately goes into crisis again. Formula is NOT okay. She is showing strong allergies to cow's milk proteins, soy proteins, and corn and corn derivatives, which pretty much eliminates every form of artificial milk we have available. 

Through testing when she was about ten months old, we are sure that the syphilis is completely eradicated.  The doctors thought that perhaps she was born without a pituitary gland, because she is so small (personally, since the child didn't gain and keep on an ounce until she was 3.5 mos old, and then had a TON of healing to do, the growth--or lack thereof-- always made sense to me).  However, we have found out that she does indeed have a fully working pituitary gland...but is one of 18 people in the world right now who was born without a pancreas.  This makes a little more sense, as she was not digesting as much of the milk as she could have been.  She is working with an ND, and has started to have success with some of the allergies she has, especially to digestive enzymes (which she will need to take forever to properly digest her food).  When we get her non-allergic to those, we will start to work on food allergies.  At this point, they are so severe that the baby will not be able to start solids until she has been treated, as she gets deathly ill from anything that is not human milk, even now at 17 mos old. (She is now 17 pounds!!)

16 Months, and now she's pulling to standing and creeping.  :)

PictureJayden is now crawling, sitting herself up, standing in the middle of the room by herself, and creeping on objects!  Since she was deaf for the first three and a half months of her life, her progress with making sounds is "age appropriate," and her ambulation is more than appropriate for her adjusted age, as well.  She has gone from a baby on Death's Door, to a toddler who is working to be a normal child, whose only "disability" to speak of will be an insulin pump!  But to keep her well, we need human milk.  She cannot tolerate anything else yet.  We know that this could be affected by the enzyme issues, but also have a strong suspicion that it has a lot to do with the drugs and infections that were in her system when she was born, and the damage done by the high fructose corn syrup and other inflammatory factors in the formula for the first months of her life on top of the other damage that was already there at birth.

The foster mom particiaptes in "milk share" which is an online community of pumpers who donate for the cost of supplies. However, if we can get donated milk from our immediate community, this would make life a lot simpler! We have drop points in in Troy on Wednesdays, as well as in Livonia, Lake Orion, and if we could get a driver from Lansing to bring milk in the direction of Livonia, Lake Orion or Auburn Hills, we could have a drop point in Lansing as well. We have donations of bottles from evenflo and ameda, so if you want to pump but cannot afford to supply bags, we have bottles to use instead (and that will keep the used bags out of the landfill, as well!).  If you  have the ability to spend the money, you could also buy evenflo bottles to use (please mark your bottles with masking tape, with your initials, your drop point, and the date pumped).

Jayden cannot tolerate homemade formulas made of goat milk or other kinds of human milk substitutes.

 Please, if you or somebody you know who is breastfeeding would be willing to continue to save a baby's life, she, her foster mother, the family who has agreed to adopt her and all the people who have come to love Jayden would be eternally grateful!

Please go to the web page set up for donations of breastmilk for Jayden

Power of the Blogging mum!

Last week The Toronto Glove & Mail released a news story on the Old Navy "formula powered" onsie shirt fiasco. While I was pleased that this article at least mentioned the WHO Code (World Heath Organizations International Code of Marketing Breastmilk Substitutes), it just skimmed over the greater issues involved:  That any marketing and promotion of Infant Formula is wrong.

   New resolutions by WHO on the Code are working hard to strive to end all infant formula advertising, marketing and promotion, and encouraging all governments to put the Code into federal laws to protect infant health.
The WHO resolutions go on to URGE countries to:

  -to develop and/or strengthen legislative, regulatory and/or other effective measures to control the marketing of breastmilk substitutes in order to give effect to the International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes and relevant resolution adopted by the World Health Assembly;
- to end inappropriate promotion of food for infants and young children and to ensure that nutrition and health claims shall not be permitted for foods for infants and young children, except where specifically provided for, in relevant Codex Alimentarius standards or national legislation.

Sadly though, marketing gurus and advertising moguls do not seem to understand the devastating effect that mass marketing of infant formulas have on the health of infants.  They do not see that marketing baby T-shirts with logos like "Formula Powered" are a desperate attempt by formula manufacturers to continue the social delusion that feeding infants formula is normal. 

Sadder still is the fact that there are those out there that would argue that the company has a right to promote whatever they want on their t-shirts.  Really? Would people be as complacent if the t-shirt read "Beer Powered"?  or "Ritalin Powered"?

The article in the Globe & Mail does point out something that is very important though:  The power of the written word.  The power of moms (and dads) to influence companies and to bring about change through blogging, chatting, texting, and emailing about companies that are not toeing the line and in need a wake up call.

A number of mom bloggers have linked to the $5 (U.S.) item on Old Navy’s website while calling for a boycott of the chain, casting the item as a propaganda tool of the formula industry.
Cate Nelson of the green parenting blog wrote about the outfit on Sept. 13: “As if the formula industry didn’t have enough power … now your baby can empower it with this adorable onesie. Yuck, right?”
She and others are posting both the Old Navy corporate contact information for complaints and the form letters they have received back from the company.
Canadian breastfeeding expert Jack Newman has also waded into the controversy. A letter he wrote last week about being “shocked” by the logo is being circulated on websites including and

And formula companies are often under fire, with activist bloggers reminding them of the World Health Organization’s international code urging member states to curb the advertising and promotion of “breast-milk substitutes.” In a recent case, alarm bells were sounded by blogs - such as the Canadian - after formula samples were included in gift bags given to guests (including several mom bloggers) at an event hosted by StrideRite/Robeez last month in New York.
It’s a climate that presents a major challenge for companies, observers say. A few years ago, social media was considered the new frontier for effective viral marketing. Now, the virus can infect back.
“This is handling fire. It’s not just a cheap, easy way to get to your customer, but it’s a very volatile medium,” said Jay Handelman, an associate professor of marketing at the Queen’s University School of Business.
 We do have the power to bring about change.  Thanks to the internet we have voices that can be spread far and wide and be heard by thousands, if not millions, of people world wide.  Breastfeeding activists have managed to get Nestle sponsorship of Health conventions cancelled, they have gotten formula samples pulled from gift bags, they have worked tirelessly to change societies perception that formula feeding is a "choice" and that breastfeeding is a "choice".  Breast is not best- breastfeeding is normal.  You don't "Choose" to do something that is completely normal- you just do it.  Like Hearing.  Seeing.  Walking.  It's normal.  There may be those out there that can not do it for medical or physical reasons, but that doesn't mean that they "choose" not to. Yet Formula companies lead people to believe that they can choose.  They lure the unwary parent with statements like "Closest to breastmilk" or "Only you can decide how to feed your baby. Talk to your physician and the people you trust. Get the information you need, and feel good about every decision you make - because you'll always do what's best for your baby. After all, only the best is good enough."... this last one is from the breastfeeding page on   With every piece of breastfeeding advice that Nestle offers, there's their comments about how their formula can also offer wonderful benefits for babies. 
"DHA and ARA (omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids) are nutrients naturally found in breast milk, or made naturally by baby (and you) from two essential omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids: alpha linolenic and linoleic acids. These essential fatty acids are also found in breast milk and are currently added to all infant formulas so that babies can make their own DHA and ARA.
Experts believe that DHA and ARA are essential for healthy brain and eye development. In fact, long-chain fatty acids like DHA and ARA accumulate in the brain and eye tissue of babies before birth - especially during the last trimester of pregnancy. For these reasons, in addition to the added alpha linolenic and linoleic acids that babies use to make their own DHA and ARA, some infant formulas are now enriched with pre-formed DHA and ARA....
Some studies have shown that infant formulas enhanced with DHA and ARA have positive effects on mental and visual development over the short term.(1, 2, 3) But other studies do not show any additional benefit compared to infant formulas without added DHA and ARA.(4, 5) And long-term effects have not yet been reported. What this means is: DHA and ARA enriched infant formulas may be beneficial to infants' mental and visual development over the short term". 

Strange, I thought I was reading an article on Breastfeeding ?  Why is it all about Formula? Did you notice the subtle twisting of the words in the last sentence? "DHA and ARA enriched infant formulas may be beneficial to infants' mental and visual development over the short term".  Nestle seems to forget that DHA & ARA are naturally found in Breastmilk, so shouldn't that sentence read "DHA and ARA are beneficial to infants' mental and visual development"? I mean, it is an article in a section of their website that is supporting breastfeeding, right?

...You didn't really think that Nestle was going to write something to encourage women to breastfeed, did you?   But apparently many people think it's a good place to get breastfeeding advice. Strange. Maybe they'll start up their own clothing line too!

But I digress (as usual.... you know me, can't stand to let an opportunity to bash Nestle go by!)

We have voices and our voices can be heard EVERYWHERE!!!  So next time you see a flagrant violation of The WHO Code, or a horrifying example of formula marketing, let the world know!!  If you don't have the time, shoot it over to me and I'll yell it from the rooftops for you! Seriously! Let me know!

Monday, September 27, 2010

Giving floride the flush

I've always been leery of fluoride. Not when I was a kid and completely brainwashed by the propaganda put out by the schools and my dentist and doctor. Once my eldest daughter got to the age of having her teeth brushed, I started questioning it.  I mean, the box clearly states that toothpaste should never be swallowed, right?!  I had a terrible time trying to figure out how to keep my 12 month old from swallowing the toothpaste (that she seemed to think was even nummier than ice cream!!).  It wasn't until a friend brought me a tube of fluoride-free childrens toothpaste that I was able to breathe a sigh of relief.  But still, there was a niggling doubt that lingered:  I mean, fluoride was everywhere- especially in our drinking water!!  How could it be dangerous to swallow toothpaste, yet OK to drink fluoridated water? So I began researching and was horrified by this chemical that every health authority seems to think was a miracle cure for much so that they saturated everything with it including our drinking water!!  I strongly suggest that every parent do some research on the topic of fluoridation Before they allow their child to have a drink from the water fountain, or get a glass of juice made from tap water. Fluoride has been slowly poisoning our children!!!

Prominent researcher apologizes for pushing fluoride

by Barry Forbes
The Tribune, Mesa, AZ
Sunday, December 5, 1999
Reproduced With Permission

"Why'd you do it, Doc? Why'd you toss the fluoride folks overboard?"

I had just tracked down Dr. Hardy Limeback, B.Sc., Ph.D., in Biochemistry, D.D.S., head of the Department of Preventive Dentistry for the University of Toronto, and president of the Canadian Association for Dental Research.

Dr. Limeback is Canada's leading fluoride authority and, until recently, the country's primary promoter of the controversial additive.

In a surprising newsmaker interview this past April, Dr. Limeback announced a dramatic change of heart. "Children under three should never use fluoridated toothpaste," he counseled. "Or drink fluoridated water. And baby formula must never be made up using Toronto tap water. Never."

Why, I wondered? What could have caused such a powerful paradigm shift?

"It's been building up for a couple of years," Limeback told me during a recent telephone interview. "But certainly the crowning blow was the realization that we have been dumping contaminated fluoride into water reservoirs for half a century. The vast majority of all fluoride additives come from Tampa Bay, Florida, smokestack scrubbers. The additives are a toxic byproduct of the super-phosphate fertilizer industry."

"Tragically," he continued, "that means we're not just dumping toxic fluoride into our drinking water. We're also exposing innocent, unsuspecting people to deadly elements of lead, arsenic and radium, all of them carcinogenic. Because of the cumulative properties of toxins, the detrimental effects on human health are catastrophic."

A recent study at the University of Toronto confirmed Dr. Limeback's worst fears. "Residents of cities that fluoridate have double the fluoride in their hip bones vis-a-vis the balance of the population. Worse, we discovered that fluoride is actually altering the basic architecture of human bones."

Skeletal fluorosis is a debilitating condition that occurs when fluoride accumulates in bones, making them extremely weak and brittle. The earliest symptoms?

"Mottled and brittle teeth," Dr. Limeback told me. "In Canada we are now spending more money treating dental fluorosis than we do treating cavities. That includes my own practice."

One of the most obvious living experiments today, Dr. Limeback believes, is a proof-positive comparison between any two Canadian cities. "Here in Toronto we've been fluoridating for 36 years. Yet Vancouver - which has never fluoridated - has a cavity rate lower than Toronto's." And, he pointed out, cavity rates are low all across the industrialized world including Europe, which is 98% fluoride free. Low because of improved standards of living, less refined sugar, regular dental checkups, flossing and frequent brushing. Now less than 2 cavities per child Canada-wide, he said.
"I don't get it, Doc. Last month, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) ran a puff piece all across America saying the stuff was better than sliced bread.
What's the story?" "Unfortunately," he replied, "the CDC is basing its position on data that is 50 years old, and questionable at best. Absolutely no one has done research on fluorosilicates, which is the junk they're dumping into the drinking water."

"On the other hand," he added, "the evidence against systemic fluoride in-take continues to pour in."
"But Doc, the dentists."

"I have absolutely no training in toxicity," he stated firmly. "Your well-intentioned dentist is simply following 50 years of misinformation from public health and the dental association. Me, too. Unfortunately, we were wrong."

Last week, Dr. Hardy Limeback addressed his faculty and students at the University of Toronto, Department of Dentistry. In a poignant, memorable meetng, he apologized to those gathered before him.

"Speaking as the head of preventive dentistry, I told them that I had unintentionally mislead my colleagues and my students. For the past 15 years, I had refused to study the toxicology information that is readily available to anyone. Poisoning our children was the furthest thing from my mind."

"The truth," he confessed to me, "was a bitter pill to swallow. But swallow it I did."

South of the border, the paradigm shift has yet to dawn. After half a century of delusion, the CDC, American Dental Association and Public Health stubbornly and skillfully continue to manipulate public opinion in favor of fluoridation.

Meantime, study after study is delivering the death knell of the deadly toxin. Sure, fuoridation will be around for a long time yet, but ultimately its supporters need to ready the life rafts. The poisonous waters of doubt and confusion are bound to get choppier.

"Are lawsuits inevitable?" I asked the good doctor. "Remember tobacco," was his short, succinct reply. Welcome, Dr. Hardy Limeback, to the far side of the fluoride equation. It's lonely over here, but in our society loneliness and truth frequently travel hand in hand. Thank you for the undeniable courage of your convictions.
Fluoride is a corrosive poison
Common pesticides use fluoridation chemicals as their main ingredient
Fluoride: The Hidden Poison in the National Organic Standards
Shocking News About Fluoride

Fluoride - The Lunatic Drug
Fluoridation status of some countries
Why American's are SHEEPLES: FLUORIDE
Artificial Sweeteners Conspiracy to Make Americans Sick
GOOD TEETH BIRTH TO DEATH - Anti-Fluoride book - Revised Edition, 117 Pages
Dr. Gerard F. Judd, Professor, Chemist and Researcher
Research Publications Co. - 602-412-3955
6615 W. Lupine
Glendale, AZ 85304-3136

HERE to go to the original article

Sunday, September 26, 2010

"Would you like a side of aluminium with your shot?"

Guggie Daly writes about Aluminium content in Vaccines in her article "Which DTaP Brand is Best for Your Child Based on Aluminum Content?".  With so much media focus on the mercury (Thimerosal) that was used- and still is used- in many vaccines, some people loose track of the many other additives that are just as dangerous.

Animal and human studies have shown that aluminum can cause nerve cell death [1] and that vaccine aluminum adjuvants can allow aluminum to enter the brain, [2,3] as well as cause inflammation at the injection site leading to chronic joint and muscle pain and fatigue. [4,5]

Ammonium sulfate:

EDF Suspected - gastrointestinal or liver toxicant, neurotoxicant, respiratory toxicant. Ammonium sulfate has not been evaluated for carcinogenic potential by the International Agency for Research on Cancer or the U.S. EPA (IARC, 1987a; U.S. EPA, 1995a). Ammonium sulfate is registered as a pesticide adjuvant.  It is used to facilitate the application of other pesticides,and as a synthetic fly attractant. Inhalation of ammonium sulfate for short durations can impair respiratory functionality in asthmatics.
In the body, formaldehyde can cause proteins to irreversibly bind to DNA. Laboratory animals exposed to large doses of inhaled formaldehyde over their lifetimes have developed more cancers of the nose and throat than are usual, as have workers in particle-board sawmills… Formaldehyde is classified as a probable human carcinogen by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and as a known human carcinogen by the International Agency for Research on Cancer. More hazardous than most chemicals in 5 out of 12 ranking systems, on at least 8 federal regulatory lists, ranked as one of the most hazardous compounds (worst 10%) to ecosystems and human health (Environmental Defense Fund)

Too dangerous for human use, Squalene is not licensed for use in the United States.  Oil adjuvants like squalene have been ordinarily used to inflict diseases in animals – for experimentation and study.  According to anthrax vaccine expert Gary Matsumoto and other reliable sources, the US military used an unlicensed, experimental anthrax vaccination laced with squalene, with disastrous consequences, including Gulf War Sydrome.

HERE to read a comprehensive list of vaccine ingredients

A little over a month ago I wrote an email to Dr. Bob Sears asking him if he had read any research that examined the amount of aluminum in vaccines VS  the huge increase of early onset Alzheimer's disease that is hitting my generation of 40 somethings- considering that those of us born in the 60's were the first test subjects of childhood vaccines. Dr. Bob responded that he has been wondered about this as well, but hasn't been able to research it yet. Unfortunately, as we have witnessed with the Mercury vs Autism debate, I highly doubt we'll be able to find many unbiased studies linking Aluminum in Vaccines to Alzheimer's disease. Yet another case of "Buyer Beware", leaving the onus on the parents to read and do their own research, coming come to their own conclusions as to the safety of vaccine ingredients.

Which DTaP Brand is Best for Your Child Based on Aluminum Content?

Per the CDC schedule, the DTaP (Diptheria, Tetanus, a-cellular Pertussis) vaccine is given at 2, 4, and 6 months then between 15-18 months and 4-6years. 

You have several to choose from. All of them have aluminum levels that exceed the FDA's 25 mcg limit for infant exposure:

Sanofi's Tripedia has 170 mcg
Sanofi's Daptacel has 330 mcg
GSK's Infanrix has 625 mcg

Although you might immediately want to choose Tripedia because it has a lower amount, please note that Tripedia also contains trace amounts of Thimerosal. Also note that if reducing exposure is your goal, then it is in your best interest to AVOID the super-combo vaccines. For example, the HepB/DTaP/Polio combo-vaccine called Pediarix by GSK contains a whopping 850 mcg of aluminum.

This site has an interactive vaccine calculator. You simply customize it to the age/weight of your child, select from the CDC schedule which vaccines you hypothetically want your child to receive and then you can choose brands from a drop down menu. It contains helpful, concise details such as which brand is designated for which age group, chemical quantities and alerts for common allergies. PLEASE bookmark! Whether you vaccinate, don't vaccinate or selectively vaccinate, this site is a gem!

 HERE to read the entire article on The Guggie Daly Site

Saturday, September 25, 2010

"Look ma! No hands!"

Pumping breastmilk  for some women is an arduous task.  Besides actually getting the milk to flowing (something I've always struggled with), there is the time it takes- time that is totally taken up with pumping as you can't do anything else while hanging onto the various parts....  Or so you thought!! 

I love this article on PhD in Parenting- "Hands Free Pumping"- lots of great ideas for hands free pumping and descriptions of various products that are offered commercially to help free up mom's hands while pumping their breastmilk.

Hands-free pumping options for breastfeeding moms

by phdinparenting on September 13, 2010
If you are a breastfeeding mom who has to pump regularly, whether you are pumping at work, exclusively pumping (by choice or necessity), trying to increase your supply, breastfeeding multiples or donating to a human milk bank, you probably don’t want to spend all of your pumping time holding the horns. There is good news: You don’t have to! There are a variety of different options for using your double electric breastpump hands-free, ranging from almost free to sophisticated comfort.

Hair Elastic Technique

Certainly the cheapest, but not the sturdiest method of hands-free pumping is the hair elastic technique. All you need is four hair elastics and a nursing bra you are ready to go. There are detailed instructions for using the hair elastic hands-free pumping technique on the kellymom website.
This is the method that I used pumping with my second child. With my first baby, I don’t think I would have found the hair elastic technique to be sturdy enough. Instead I used the now discontinued Medela hands-free breastpumping kit, which also used elastics, but was sturdier. However, it only worked with Medela nursing bras, which were not my favourites. Once I felt more confident and comfortable with my pump, I was able to use the hair elastic technique and found it to be both convenient and easy. I had to hold on to the flanges at the beginning of a pumping session, but once the suction kicked in, I didn’t need to hold them anymore. It certainly is the cheapest method, doesn’t require you to wear a specific nursing bra (pretty much any brand will do), and doesn’t require a lot of set-up time.
While it is intended for use with a nursing bra that has hooks that you can hook the elastic into, I was also able to use it with some nursing bras with snaps or with a non-nursing tank top with shelf bra by looping the hair elastic around the part of the bra where the strap meets the cup.

La Leche League Hands Free Pumping & Nursing Softcup Bra #4105

DIY Hands-Free Pumping Bra

If you are a DIY type, you may be interested in instructions on how to turn a regular bra into a hands-free pumping bra. This approach is probably quite economical if you know what you are doing, but I don’t like the idea of either having to change bras each time I want to pump or wearing two bras (the hands-free pumping one and a nursing bra).
Another really easy option, used by Marcy from Life is Good, Bonnie from Life As I Know It and Katy from Along Came a Hippo is to cut holes into an old sports bra.

HERE to read the entire article on PhD in Parenting

Birth Story: Kim's Twins

A great story of a mom who has a natural vaginal birth for her twins after walking out on the OB that wanted to give her an automatic caesarean section.

My first pregnancy 9 years ago was a multiple pregnancy which automatically put me in the high risk category. I didn’t see anything high risk about it until I started looking for an OB. I live in Central Texas and at 22 years old, had little knowledge of birth or the stigma that has grown up around natural birthing. I just knew that I DID NOT  want to have surgery if I could avoid it. Imagine my shock when physician after physician told me that they would not even let me attempt a vaginal birth because I was carrying twins. I can’t remember how many times I heard the words “automatic section” while pregnant with my boys.

Finally, I found a new-to-town doctor who was more than willing to let me attempt a vaginal birth. His only request was that I have an epidural and birth in the operating room just in case a c-section became unavoidable. I decided that I could deal with the epidural. Dr. Brian Becker of Waco Center for Women’s Health was easy going and had no trouble talking me about any test or procedure.

I was diagnosed with Intracranial Hypertension during my pregnancy after months of severe headaches and finally a lumbar puncture to relieve the pressure on my brain. My neurologist prescribed Diamox to help with the spinal fluid pressure and as he handed me the script, he told me that he had never given this medication to a pregnant woman before because it had caused birth defects in animals during drug trials. I immediately burst into tears and told him that I would not take the medication. He was very gruff and said that if I did not take it, I could lose my vision. I remember leaving his office in a daze and as I walked through the medical complex, I ran into a staff member of Dr. Becker’s office. The office was closed, but she immediately took me inside to talk to Dr. Becker. He sat with me and calmed me down while he explained that Diamox was actually a Class C drug that was really no different than the pain medications that I had been taking to help with the headaches. Now, this was after hours and this doctor was sitting there holding my hand while I bawled like a child! I look back now and am just in awe.

I started having regular contractions on a Saturday night and went to the hospital. Unfortunately, Dr. Becker was not on call. The on call doctor kept me overnight and on Sunday morning told me that he was going to prep me for the O.R. I told him that my doctor had told me that my boys were both head down and that we had planned to at least attempt a vaginal birth. Now, I’ve come to see this doctor in my head as an evil little old doctor with large spectacles wringing his hands and telling me that he only delivered twins by c-section. If I’m honest with myself, I see an older gentleman with gray hair in a white coat. I told him that if that was the case, he would not be delivering my babies and I walked out. I had never done anything like that in my life and was instantly terrified. What if I had just killed my babies because I was afraid (and being completely honest now, I was terrified!) of having a surgery that millions of women have every year? I remember calling Dr. Becker’s office very early the next morning and being completely comforted by him and his staff. I had expected anger and shame! But they told me that I had done the right thing! And since my contractions were no longer regular, they would just see me on Thursday when I had already had an appointment scheduled.

I made my regularly scheduled 38 week check up that Thursday. My water broke at 4 a.m. Friday morning and labor started about 6 hours later. Dr. Becker met me at the hospital and told me that he was supposed to leave at noon that day but would stay with me as long as he could. I gave birth vaginally to twin A @ 1:45 that afternoon. Twin B followed a short 22 minutes later vaginally. I had to have one stitch and was able to hold my babies right after they were born. It was the most beautiful day ever! Both of my boys were extremely healthy and weighed in at 5 lbs 4 oz and 6 lbs 4 oz respectively. We got to go home Sunday morning.

Because of Dr. Becker, I knew that I could birth babies naturally. So when I got pregnant again 8 years later, I had a completely natural labor in a hospital with a doula in attendance.  Since the birth of my twins, he has become involved in the only practice in this area that has a CNM on staff. He is highly regarded by the homebirth midwife I met with and by my doula, both of whom recommended him for my most recent child. (I was unable to use him with my next pregnancy due to insurance restrictions.) But I will never forget the man who taught me that birth was a natural occurrence in a woman’s life. In my mind, he is extremely qualified and I would recommend him in a heartbeat to any new mom who needs a physician she can trust.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

16 Reasons NOT to Vacinate

The Official Alternative Doctor Vaccination Pages gives a great run down of 16 reasons NOT to vaccinate your children.  The information is concise and easy to read.  It is an excellent platform to do some further research for yourself and your family on any of the 16 prepared to be shocked by what a little bit of digging on the subject of vaccinations will uncover!

The Official Alternative Doctor Vaccination Pages

Disclaimer: Any information obtained here is not to be construed as medical OR legal advice. The decision to vaccinate and how you implement that decision is yours and yours alone.


1a. Disease decline. Believe it or not, there isn't any convincing evidence through the statistics that vaccination reduced the death rate for any disease such as measles. So, where is the benefit? Measles deaths had declined by 99.4% before vaccination!
"Up to 90% of the total decline in the death rate of children between 1860-1965 because of whooping cough, scarlet fever, diptheria, and measles occured before the introduction of immunisations and antibiotics."
Dr Archie Kalokerinos, M.D.
"There is no convincing scientific evidence that mass inoculations can be credited with eliminating any childhood disease."
-Dr Robert Mendelsohn MD
b. or eliminated any disease such as smallpox or polio:
"It is pathetic and ludicrous to say we ever vanquished smallpox with vaccines, when only 10% of the population was ever vaccinated."
Dr Glen Dettman.
"That the polio virus is the sole cause of polio is accepted by most people as gospel, and that the Salk and Sabin vaccines eradicated polio in the western world is etched into our collective consciousness as the major medical miracle of our time. But the history of polio and its vaccines is shrouded in a murky mist of politico/scientific manipulation, altered statistics, redefinition and reclassification of the disease, increased cases of vaccine induced paralytic polio, and monkey viruses transmitted by contaminated vaccines to millions of people worldwide."
Edda West
"Within a few years of the polio vaccine we started seeing some strange phenomena like the year before the first 300,000 doses were given in the United States childhood leukaemia had never struck in children under the age of two. One year after the first onslaught they had the first cases of children under the age of two that died of leukaemia........ Dr Herbert Radnor observed that in a small area of this little town, in an area where no cases of leukaemia had been expected or at the most one in 4 years according to previous statistics, they suddenly had a rash like an epidemic within a few blocks"
Dr Snead
c. While there is plenty of evidence smallpox vaccination increased the incidence, and spread smallpox along with syphilis, leprosy and TB/consumption around the world:
"Smallpox was on the way out, indeed epidemics disappeared decades before the WHO decided to conduct the final "eradication" campaign. It is also well-documented that the largest epidemics occurred in the most highly vaccinated populations, while whose who were unvaccinated, did not have the same epidemics. "
Dr. Viera Scheibner
"We also hear of the noble work of Father Damien among the lepers of Hawaii, but we are not told that there was not one leper in the whole of the Hawaiian Islands before the noble work of Jenner reached them. By the nineties, 10 per cent of the natives were lepers."
Lionel Dole
while ignoring for 200 years the real causes of smallpox------ sanitation and poverty:
"Sanitation did for Prussia what 35 years of compulsory vaccination was unable to accomplish. At the present time in Prussia small-pox is almost extinct. (Cheers.) It is not that people ‘are being vaccinated more; they are vaccinated less."
Dr Hadwen MD (The Case Against Vaccination ---an address at Gloucester on Saturday, January 25th, 1896, during the Gloucester Smallpox Epidemic) read the entire historic pamphlet here!
"Perhaps the greatest evil of immunization lies in its diversion of public attention from true methods of disease prevention. It encourages public authorities to permit all kinds of sanitary defects and social problems to remain undressed, particularly in schools. It ignores the part played by food and sunlight and many other factors in the maintenance of health. It exaggerates the risk of diphtheria and works upon the fear of parents. The more it is supported by public authorities, the more will its dangers and disadvantages be concealed or denied."
M. Meadow Bayly, M.R.C.S., 1944
d. If vaccination suppresses one disease another one increases:
"The use of Hib vaccines has displaced haemophillus as a cause of disease and death, but other organisms like the far more serious, and more untreatable pneumococcus or other bacterial meningitis types have risen to take the place of Hib as causes of meningitis."
Hilary Butler
Now 1 in 100 children have autism, 1 in 5 asthma, 1 in 10 dyslexia....... and the number one suspect is vaccination. The Government/Vaccine Industry is going to carry on vaccinating, covering up, and claiming vaccines are safe, until every other child has a vaccine induced disease, so only parent awareness is going to stop that.
"We are in the midst of an international epidemic. Those responsible for investigating and dealing with this epidemic have failed. Among the reasons for this failure is the fact that they are faced with the prospect that they themselves may be responsible for the epidemic. Therefore, in their efforts to exonerate themselves they are an impediment to progress. I believe that public health officials know there is a problem; they are, however, willing to deny the problem and accept the loss of an unknown number of children on the basis that the success of public health policy - mandatory vaccination - by necessity involves sacrifice. Neither I, nor my colleagues subscribe to the belief that any child is expendable. History has encountered and dealt with such beliefs. You, the parent's and children, are the source of the inspiration and strength for our endeavours; our quest for truth through science - a science that is compassionate, uncompromising and uncompromised. I do not mean to stir you to mutiny, but be assured that armed with this science it is in your power to force this issue, in your pediatricians office, in Congress, in the Law Courts. Keep faith with your instincts - they have served you well."
Andy Wakefield (April 22, 2002 "POWER of ONE - IDEA" Rally, Washington DC)
2. The disease dangers have been exagerated and fear propagated to sell the vaccination and medical paradigm. It is hard to sell me the idea that measles is dangerous when I gave it to my whole school. It may be dangerous in malnourished and ill children but they shouldn't be vaccinated for that reason. Now the chickenpox vaccine has come out you can see the fearmongering in process.
"For the public ever to break command science it must first understand the basis of its enormous powers.......Traditionally, the power of medical sciences has been based on the fear of disease, particularly infectious disease."
Peter Deusberg (Inventing The AIDS Virus).
"There is no doubt, however, that the risk has been, for some years, vastly exaggerated, seemingly to prepare the public mind to accept the new (diptheria) vaccine."--- M. Meadow Bayly, M.R.C.S.,
"Since people cannot be vaccinated against their will, the biggest job of a health department is always to persuade the unprotected people to get vaccinated. This we attempted to do in three ways, education, fear, and pressure. We dislike very much to mention fear and pressure, yet they accomplish more than education because they work faster than education, which is normally a slow process. During the months of March and April, we tried education and vaccinated only 62,000. During May we made use of fear and pressure and vaccinated 223,000 people."----.Dr John Keller
"I have lectured all over the world... I have always had a special interest in newspapers. All of them have one thing in common, there is always some reference made to some epidemic in some part of the world. For instance, two years ago, one paper referred to a polio epidemic in Holland. For the past three years, our newspapers have commented on the diphtheria epidemic in Russia. By these means, the population is constantly threatened with epidemics, they have been made to fear them, and the reports always conclude: "Go and get vaccinated".--Dr Buchwald MD
3. Contrary to a very popular government lie, the vaccines aren't safe unless you stretch the definition of "safe" to include death, numerous diseases, and serious brain damage. They have paid out for 900 children (UK) with serious brain damage from DPT vaccines, but now deny it ("science has moved on" is the phrase used), saying on their leaflets DPT doesn't cause brain damage! How come vaccines can cause serious brain damage, & death but somehow not autism?
Some vaccines are less dangerous than others. Safe is breastfeeding, which incidentally, is natural immunisation, also ignored and downplayed:
"I accused doctors of still failing to give women detailed information about the immunological benefits to babies of breastmilk, at which point the only woman paediatrician got very upset at me, and said that was a mother’s choice, just like abortion. I looked her square in the face and asked if she had children, and her answer was "Yes" I then raised my eyebrows and "Who you bottlefed, right?" She instantly got up and left. I think the unspoken implications got through loud and clear."--Hilary Butler
Formula manufacturers "donate $1 million annually to the American Academy of Pediatrics in the form of a renewable grant that has already netted the AAP $8 million. The formula industry also contributed at least $3 million toward the building costs of the AAP headquarters." (Mothering magazine, July-August, p.60; refers to a book Milk, Money and Madness by Naomi Baumslag and Dia L. Michels (Westport, Conn.: Bergin and Garvey, 1995, p. 172))
4. Governments (and the mainstream media) are run by the Corporations, for the Corporations, so don't expect much light from that direction. The two main UK government spokesman for MMR receive funding from the makers. 
"Professor David Elliman, whose study said fears of a link between the MMR vaccine and autism were unfounded, admitted that he and Dr Helen Bedford had been given money by drugs giants SmithKline Beecham and Pasteur Merieux Merck Sharp & Dohme. Their report, MMR Vaccine - Worries Are Not Justified, is published in the current issue of the medical journal Archives of Disease in Childhood, and was used by the government to reiterate its view that the vaccine is safe."
It is also easily seen in the government organisations & vaccine advisory committees, one even chaired by a Merck man:
"I have minutes from a CDC Study Group Meeting on the Hepatitis B vaccine held in March, 1997. ....It should be noted that the afternoon session of this meeting was chaired by Dr. Robert Sharrar of Merck."
Betty D. Fluck
"Asking the CDC to look into vaccine safety is like asking the fox to guard the chicken coop."
Dr Bernard Rimland
"Still persisting in my inquiries, the issue came up that vaccine manufacturing was an essential component of industry, this country’s (U.S.) protection against potential biological warfare. A number of companies had given up making vaccines. It’s an economically risky business. If one criticizes, in this case, Lederle, too much and they stop production, then all the production will go to Switzerland. The Swiss would then be bought out by the Russians, and then there will be biological warfare...That stays as a memory of the way the government works... I have approached individuals to try and understand why that system would operate like that. The major explanation was that the regulatory authorities are controlled by and depend on the industry, and so, industry growth, if you want, calls the shots."
Dr Martin

HERE to read the entire article

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Will You Keep Your Son Intact?"

 glopassport.jpgThis is a brilliant video of Gloria Lemay discussing the question that many midwives and child birth educators and doulas sometimes find difficult to ask "Are you Keeping your Son Intact?" .  Gloria talks about the way to phrase the question, the need for parents to be fully educated about genital cutting,  and about the need for mothers to stand up and protect their sons rights to having intact genitals.  This is a video every person in the childbirth industry NEEDS to watch, with note pad in hand.

Glora is a mover and shaker in the world of Intactivism and has written many great articles on all aspects of the subject of male genital cutting.  Click HERE for a list of her many articles on Intactivism.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Circumcision- news, blogs, articles and videos

If you are looking for news articles or any information on the subject of Circumcision- both Male & Female- I highly recommend a visit to The Intactivism Pages.  The site has a comprehensive list of articles, news, blogs and videos all dealing with circumcision.  I have just spent an hour searching the site and still have barely scratched the surface all the information is has available!!

The Intactivism Pages

The struggle for genital integrity
and against the involuntary genital modification
of children of any sex:

Monday, September 20, 2010

Higher HIV rates in CIRCUMCISED Men!!!

Earlier this month I wrote the article 5 reasons parents give for choosing circumcision, and why those reasons are not valid. The fifth reason that I gave was the misguided belief that male circumcision would somehow reduce the risks of AIDs .
Circumcision does NOT protect against all STD's and HIV/AIDs infections.  The only thing that protects a man from these diseases is using a condom, not sewing his wild oats in every field he passes by, and most importantly: being educated about the risks and causes of these infections and how to prevent them in the first place.  Believing that circumcision will automatically protect you from a raging case of gonorrhoea, or syphilis, or HPV or AIDs is fool hardy and beyond stupid.

A comment about the studies that were presented at the latest AIDs conference with regards to reducing AIDs through circumcision.  These studies were done in Africa where the populations are faced with horrifying AIDs epidemics that are ravaging many African countries. In my opinion these studies were done as an act of desperation for a desperate situation in desperate countries. The only way to stop the flood of AIDs is the use of condoms and stopping the reuse of needles. As someone who lived in the Congo for a time and witnessed first hand the devastating poverty that the vast majority of the population lives in, I understand the problem of condoms and needles all too well.  Why are these problems?   For the same two reasons- they are both suppose to be use only once and then disposed of, and both require money to purchase.  I can tell you that the extreme poverty of the majority of the population means that buying condoms and fresh needles is impossible for people struggling just to feed their families. Regardless of condoms and needles being sent to these countries for free, they would end up on the black market, sold to make money.  Even if some of them made their way into the hands of the population, after being used once they would need to be disposed of.... But there is no garbage collection, there is no way to safely dispose of them, no way to guarantee that someone wouldn't pick them up, clean them and then resell them.  Hence the act of desperation: cutting off men's foreskins to try to do ANYTHING to reduce the transmission of a deadly disease.

This situation in Africa bears no resemblance to our current situation in North America.  We have condoms, we have clean needles, we have medical care, we have education, we have support services, we have proper garbage disposal to be rid of the waste composed of used condoms and needles. Basing your decision to circumcise your infant son, here in North America, on studies done in Africa makes absolutely no sense.
 I stand by my reasoning that basing your decision whether or not to circumcise your new born son on a study done in Africa makes absolutely no sense what so ever.  I was thrilled today to read an article that finally shoots down any question there could possibly be on this subject:

More circumcised men are HIV positive

By MUSA SIMELANE on September 19,2010

though male
circumcision is considered to have a protective effect for HIV infection, circumcised men have a slightly higher HIV infection than those who are not.
The Times SUNDAY can today reveal that government has known this for close to three years.
It is contained in the Swaziland Demographic and Health Survey (SDHS) of 2007 which still prevails.
This report summarises findings of the 2006 survey carried out by the Swaziland Central Statistical Office (SCO).
The report places the infection rate for circumcised males at 22 per cent while for those uncircumcised stands at 20 per cent.
HIV stands for Human Immuno Deficiency Virus. It is the virus that can cause the acquired immuno deficiency syndrome (AIDS).
The report states that the protective aspect of male circumcision is based in part because of the physiological differences that increase the susceptibility to HIV infection among uncircumcised men. However, the relationship between HIV prevalence and circumcision is not in the expected direction.

So the next time a parent tries to tell you that they will circumcise their male children to reduce their risks of getting HIV/AIDs, you can tell them flat out  "NO IT WON'T"

What WILL save your child from getting HIV, AIDs or any other STD is teaching them to use a condom EVERY time.  It's not hard to do- really it isn't!!  If you are THAT embarrassed to talk to your sons (and daughters) about sex and how to take care of their reproductive health, and how to NOT get pregnant.... then you really need to analyse what your priorities are in life.  It might not be a comfortable conversation to have, but it's one that is VITAL to the future health of your children, and might just save you from becoming a grandparent at 35 years of age!!!
Don't wait till you think that your 17 year old MIGHT be getting interested in girls, by then it's probably too late!!!  Talking to your children on these topic from a younger age will not only build a strong foundation for future communication, but will educate them about the facts BEFORE they get pulled into the world of myths and misguided ideas about cabbage patches, storks and "you can't get pregnant the first time.....".


Cranky mom tells formula company to buzz off!

 A friend posted this blog on Facebook and I had to share it with you all. I could of written every word of it myself and I know that most of you could too!!  These ads drive me nuts.  To the point that if Nick hears me cursing at the computer he'll ask "another formula commercial?" I rant and rave about it so much that even my kids will point out the ads in magazines and in stores and tell me that "They shouldn't do that, babies only need breastmilk!!"

Out of the mouths of babes, eh?

Monday, September 20, 2010

Hey! Your baby is a month old! It's time for FORMULA!!

Yes, apparently it is time to feed my baby formula, especially now that he's a whole FOUR WEEKS OLD.  At least according to Enfamil.  I got this in the mail last week:

Open it up and I can read about prebiotics and how they are in breast milk to support my baby's immune system.  But, now I can get them in Enfamil PREMIUM. 

"So, when you give your baby Enfamil PREMIUM, you're giving him a formula designed to support his natural defenses, which is one of the best things a mom can do."

And there are attached checks for my "next" purchase. 

Really?  Because being the crazy lady I am, I thought the BEST thing I could do was nurse my baby????  And what do you mean my "next" purchase?  I haven't purchased formula in the whole 7+ years since I birthed my first baby . . .

Maybe I'm doing something wrong . . .

Oh wait.  That's what they wanted me to think!!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

"Wean me Gently"

Wean Me Gently

by Cathy Cardall

I know I look so big to you,

Maybe I seem too big for the needs I have.

But no matter how big we get,

We still have needs that are important to us.

I know that our relationship is growing and changing,

But I still need you. I need your warmth and closeness,

Especially at the end of the day

When we snuggle up in bed.

Please don't get too busy for us to nurse.

I know you think I can be patient,

Or find something to take the place of a nursing;

A book, a glass of something,

But nothing can take your place when I need you.

Sometimes just cuddling with you,

Having you near me is enough.

I guess I am growing and becoming independent,

But please be there.

This bond we have is so strong and so important to me,

Please don't break it abruptly.

Wean me gently,

Because I am your mother,

And my heart is tender.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Urgent Need for Breastmilk in BC


I just got this message and I am hoping that some of my readers might be able to help this mother!! Please share this story around to your groups and chat sources if you think that you might know someone in the area that can help!!!

A Procter woman is appealing for breast milk to help her infant daughter.
Anaya Cassin-Potts, who just turned one, was diagnosed this spring with infantile Krabbe leukodystrophy, a rare disease where myelin disappears from the brain cells.
“She’s lost her ability to develop,” says her mother Camara Cassin. “She can’t hold her head up anymore, can’t smile or eat, and has lost her eyesight.”
Anaya is also fed through a tube and is intolerant to formula.
“When she first got sick and couldn’t nurse anymore, I started pumping breast milk for her, but I’ve only ever been able to get 10 ounces a day, and she needs 30,” Cassin says.
Supplementing with formula only created excess mucus and made Anaya sick.
Cassin put out a mass e-mail seeking local moms to pump milk for her, which made a world of difference.
“Breast milk has been her saviour,” Cassin says. “It’s the one thing that’s really essential. Since she’s been on a breast-milk only diet, she’s started gaining weight, although she’s still very small, about the size of a four-month old.”
In the last few months, some of the major donors have moved, and Cassin urgently needs to find replacements.
“Even if people had some frozen breast milk they wanted to contribute, we can use that,” she says. “Fresh is preferable but frozen is still a godsend.”
Right now six women contribute one feed per day, but Anaya requires eight.
Breast milk also allows her to be put on medication to dry up secretions in her throat.
“It has a laxative effect and helps pass through her system,” Cassin says. “If she’s forced to consume formula, the medicine will interact and plug up her bowel.”
However, if she’s off the medication, they have to use a suction machine to remove mucus and phlegm from her throat.
“It’s a very loud machine that she really hates. It’s uncomfortable and makes her gag.”
Despite Anaya’s many challenges, her mother emphasizes “it’s not all bad. She has awareness of sound. She loves to go for walks and listen to the birds and flowing water. She also enjoys bath time and can still recognize the people in her life, like me and her sister Solara.
“She doesn’t move a whole lot and everything needs to be done for her, just like a newborn, but she’s not suffering every second. We have a full-time nurse who helps.”
The condition is usually fatal within two years, although some children have lived to six or seven with it.
“She’s still able to enjoy being alive,” Cassin says. “Every moment isn’t a struggle. She has a lot of good moments, she’s very loved and we’ll take good care of her.”
Women who might be able to provide breast milk can contact Cassin at 229-4034 or

Friday, September 17, 2010

INTACT America- spread the word

Spread the Word

Send a message to the AAP Task Force on Circumcision today!

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) Task Force on Circumcision has been meeting to finalize its policy on routine male circumcision. Having recently retracted its policy statement calling for a lift of the Federal ban on female genital cutting, the AAP must now stand up and protect the rights of ALL children to an intact body.
While the AAP prepares to go public with its statement, it’s critical that it hear directly from people who oppose circumcision. Remind the AAP that it’s wrong – morally, medically, and ethically – and that doctors took an oath to “do no harm.”

Spread the word to everyone!

One of Intact America's most important goals is making sure the members of The American Academy of Pediatrics' Task Force on Circumcision get the message that any form of genital cutting, whether male or female, is unnecessary, harmful, and ethically wrong -- and we need your help.
Will you take two minutes to help us spread the word about this urgent effort to stop the AAP from recommending male infant circumcision? (And if you haven't yet sent your letter to the AAP, you can send it right now!)
It's easy to do, just copy and paste the message below into an e-mail to your neighbors, parents, adult kids, co-workers, siblings, physicians (especially your pediatrician!), and friends:

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) Task Force on Circumcision has been meeting to finalize the organization's forthcoming statement, which may recommend circumcision.

We need to make sure it hears our message BEFORE it issues a decision that could be harmful to baby boys across America: Circumcision is harmful, unnecessary, and ethically wrong, and pediatricians need to remember that they took an oath to “do no harm.”

Send a message directly to the AAP task force now!

If we successfully prevent the AAP from recommending circumcision, it will be a victory for baby boys - and it will help prevent dangerous recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP), which are also considering revising their positions.

But there isn't much time. With your help, we need to turn up the pressure on the AAP right now.

Send your message to the AAP task force today - before it's too late for baby boys.

Once you've sent your message, please go one step further and forward this message to your friends and family and ask them to join you in contacting the AAP. Please also share this message on Facebook and Twitter.

Time is of the essence, and we need to ensure that the members of the task force hear from as many intactivists as possible before they issue their statement.

At this critical moment, we hope you will continue to stand with us.

Thank you for your support!