Green-News: Wednesday 4.8.09

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DHA Helps Brain Development of Premature Girls

A new study in the Journal of the American Medical Association reveals increased DHA intake in premature babies improved the neurodevelopment of girls. Scientists gave breastfeeding mothers a DHA supplement or a placebo. The breast milk of the supplement group had .85% concentration of total fatty acids. The placebo group was only .25%. Researchers also tested two varieties of baby formula, one with a 1.1% concentration of total fatty acids and the other with 0.42%. At 18 months, infants were given standard developmental tests and those on high DHA diets scored 5 points higher than infants on a normal DHA diet and had less mental delay; via Martek Biosciences Corporation.

DHA or docosahexaenoic acid is an essential nutrient for optimal brain. Our brains are 50% fat! And children's diets are notoriously low in short-chain omega-3 fatty acids, which the body converts into DHA. DHA deficiency has been linked to dyslexia, depression, schizophrenia and other mental disorders. But according to Dr. Fuhrman, most people can make sufficient DHA from omega-3 fats. Omega-3s are found in walnuts, flax seeds, green vegetables, algae and fish that eat the algae.

And Dr. Fuhrman sells his own DHA supplement called DHA Purity. It’s veggie-derived, made from microalgae. Microalgae refers to phytoplankton, microphytes and planktonic algae.

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China, Lethal Punishments for Toxic Milk

In a swift and harsh act of justice, China has sentenced 2 men involved with the milk-melamine crisis to death and another man to life in prison. With 6 fatalities and 300,000 babies suffering kidney disease from ingesting baby formula tainted with melamine, a pesticide, China sought an abrupt and decisive end to a national embarrassment and has since taken steps to improve food safety; via BusinessWeek.

Initially China encouraged citizens to breast feed in order to avoid tainted formula and the United States Food and Drug Administration urged consumers not to buy Chinese-made baby formula. And recently research discovered exposure to melamine can cause painful kidney stones.

In 2007, the U.S. quarantined 6,000 hogs contaminated with melamine and cyanuric acid, an ingredient in bleach and herbicides.

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