Sometimes I wonder if I can ever do anything right. If it isn’t the children chastising me for something, then it is my mean internal voice, and if it isn’t that, then it is another article I read that tells me I shouldn’t be feeding my children something, or taking my children somewhere…or perhaps even bothering to breathe. Most of the time I let all of this wash over me like a giant tidal wave…diving under my enormous fluffy duvet and only coming out again when the coast is clear.
Today, however my duvet isn’t working…
I have known for a while about there being arsenic in rice but have somehow managed to shrug it off and not turn to google to find out more. I am not sure what was different about yesterday but I decided to type those dreaded words into the search box. Why???
In my misguided belief that I was doing the best for my kids, I have been feeding them brown rather than white rice…twice as much arsenic as it turns out. Not only have I been doing that a couple of times a week but I have been baking goods with flour made almost entirely out of rice (often brown again); feeding my daughter rice cakes for lunch (brown rice again so doubly bad); giving them rice crispies or some other rice-based cereal (most are when you are gluten-free) and of course the brown rice pasta (again in my misguided belief that brown rice pasta must be better so that my little coeliac gets her fibre intake – tricky for coeliacs). All in all I have been well and truely poisoning them.
Then I move on to the fats and oils issue…actually no I won’t because by the time I cover that I will feel like I have been rolled over by a steam roller.
So you can see how I feel like I really can’t get anything right?
I spend the majority of my time thinking about food or making it…developing exciting new things for my children to try; considering how I can make it more healthy and full of important nutrients; concocting something from scratch to mimic a gluten and dairy-containing favourite. I avoid giving my kids processed foods and things with too many preservatives or strange ingredients.
But to what end? Providing my daughter with a gluten-free diet for her coeliac disease may avoid her from getting certain types of cancer and osteoporosis in the long term but what I am exposing her to instead?? Cancer, developmental problems, cardiovascular disease, neurotoxicity and diabetes is what the WHO says long term exposure to arsenic can cause…
Which ever way you look at it we are stuck between a rock and a hard place!
What are your views on this? Do you have concerns for yours or your children’s health when your diet excludes certain things meaning you rely more heavily on others? I would love to hear what you think…
Some links for further reading…
The University of Manchester – Health risks from aresenic in rice exposed
Yahoo News – Largest study widens rice, arsenic link
Food Standards Agency – Arsenic in rice drinks
European Food Safety Authority – Scientific Opinion on Arsenic in Food