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Our Blog

Stay up to date with our recent research findings, news features, and publications below! Our blog is a great place to learn more detailed information about the collective nationwide network of Children's Environmental Health researchers and their findings.

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Phthalates and bisphenols — can affect health, especially if the exposure occurs in the womb or during early childhood. Certain plastics contain these chemicals that are harmful to human health even at low levels of exposure.

Soft, flexible plastics are often made with chemicals called phthalates.

Hard clear plastics are often made with a chemical called bisphenol-A (BPA). These ingredients can interfere with hormones (such as estrogen and testosterone) and may disrupt a child’s normal development and growth, especially if the child is exposed to these chemicals over long periods of time.

Tips & Tricks

1. Avoid plastics with recycling code #3, #6, and

2. Purchase glass baby bottles with a silicone

sleeve whenever possible. If glass is not an

option, milky, opaque plastic bottles and sippy

cups labeled “BPA free” can be used.

3. Never heat or microwave food or drink in

any plastic containers, even if the product

says “microwavable” or “microwave safe”.

4. Leaching of toxic chemicals from plastic to food

or liquid may occur. Use a paper towel instead

of plastic wrap to cover food in the microwave.

5. Never heat plastic baby bottles. When mixing

formula, heat the water before mixing. When

warming breast milk, use a glass bottle (remove

the plastic cap).

6. Use PVC-free plastic wrap or a reusable

option like beeswax wraps.

7. Eat fresh or frozen produce. Minimize the use

of canned foods and canned drinks as many are

lined with BPA or its sister compounds BPS/BPF.

8. Choose a pacifier that is either entirely made

of silicone, or has a silicone or natural

rubber nipple and is labeled BPA-free (if hard


9. Purchase phthalate-free and fragrance–free

beauty products.

10. Ask your dentist for BPA-free sealants and

composite fillings.

11. Discard all worn or scratched plastic food

containers, especially baby bottles, sippy cups

and infant feeding plates and cups.

Children’s Environmental Health (CEH) Day takes place on the second Thursday of October each year.

Focused on action and equity, the goal of #CEHDay is to collectively increase the visibility of children's environmental health issues while empowering individuals and organizations to take action on behalf of children nationwide. We believe that all children have the right to healthy environments in which to thrive. Environmental health for all kids means clean air, clean water, products free from harmful chemicals.

Each October, we celebrate Children’s Environmental Health Month. As a member of the Children’s Environmental Health Network, we strive to increase awareness and understanding of children’s environmental health among key audiences. Through our research and outreach work, we are committed to creating intervention and prevention methods among communities, health care professionals, and policymakers.

Today’s children face an epidemic of illnesses and chronic diseases - linked to environmental exposures, and our changing climate. There is an urgent need to put children and their families into the forefront of our nation's public health and environmental health related actions.

As a research center in the Children’s Environmental Health Network, we strive to positively impact local environmental policy in our region with the findings of our studies. As part of this network we strive to:

  1. Increase awareness and understanding of children’s environmental health among key audiences

  2. Mobilize action on children’s environmental health issues

  3. Establish/expand the community and network of partners working on children’s environmental health issues

Our Efforts

Through our continued research on the health outcomes associated with early childhood exposure to arsenic, we have been successful in advocating for and informing policies locally and nationwide. In 2019, our research on arsenic exposure through drinking water and the health effects it has on children informed the policy that was created in NH to limit the amount arsenic in municipal drinking water systems. Our research on the presence of arsenic in rice-based baby food was also fundamental to the Baby Food Safety Act of 2021. The bill, which was proposed to congress will limit the amounts of heavy metals in baby food.

We have recently expanded our outreach efforts to inform healthcare providers of the prevalence of naturally occurring in our region’s drinking water. While it’s been a great success to see limitations on arsenic enforced in public drinking water, a huge portion of the population in rural NH and VT get their drinking water from private wells, which are not regularly tested for arsenic.

In a recent trial study, we encourage local children’s healthcare providers to ask patients where they receive their water source. Eleven healthcare clinics in mostly rural areas of New Hampshire and Vermont were asked to give out prepaid water sampling kits, covering several possible contaminants including arsenic. The study test different approaches to distributing the kits and found the most parents completed them when doctors handed them out in person and followed up with reminder calls, solidifying the importance of disseminating pertinent research findings to providers and the greater community.

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