Saturday, November 10, 2007

Which Card to Pick???

Decisions...decisions.....I am rather partial to the middle one...

Cards courtesy of :

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Did You Know...

Kandice and I were chatting this morning, and in light of the newest recalls, remembered the W5 program that ironically we both had watched on TV. It was an incredible eye opener when it comes to our food, I had NO idea.

The scariest paragraph?

Under Canadian law, the ingredients can come from anywhere in the world and still get a "Product of Canada" label. That's because "Product of Canada" only means that at least 51 per cent of manufacturing costs were incurred in Canada.

And one to make you nauseated:

Morehouse just completed a four-year study on food safety in China, concluding that "the food safety in China is inadequate -- for the Chinese population and for export."

Bottom line... we don't have any clue what we are eating, and that probably applies to organic as well. Go read the article, its very interesting.

Now I do believe that Save On makes a point of local produce and beef...but don't quote me that its constant or just something they do when they can. From the website:

As a proudly Western Canadian company, we’re known for our innovative ideas, our commitment to local communities and our support of local growers, suppliers, and producers. We carry more than 200 varieties of produce from local family-operated farms in B.C. and Alberta. We feature local cheeses made especially for us, and we’re proud to offer 100% Western Canadian beef, sold under our very own Western Family label.

So I emailed them today asking questions..lets see if I get an auto-reply answer ;)

Anyone know if these Canadian standards apply to toys as well? Perhaps the toy can be manufactured here but painted in lead somewhere else? LOL. Not so funny but you see what I am getting at.

Good F-ing God

Millions of toys recalled; contain 'date rape' drug
Two U.S.
children went into comas after swallowing Chinese-made Aqua Dots found to
contain a chemical that converts into 'date rape' drug when
November 8 2007: 10:13 AM EST

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Millions of Chinese-made toys have been pulled
from shelves in North America and Australia after scientists found they contain
a chemical that converts into a powerful date rape drug when ingested. Two
children in the United States and three in Australia were hospitalized after
swallowing the beads.
With only seven weeks until Christmas, the recall is
yet another blow to the toy industry - already bruised by a slew of recalls this
past summer.

In the United States, the toy goes by the name Aqua Dots, a
highly popular holiday toy distributed by Toronto-based Spin Master Toys. They
are called Bindeez in Australia, where they were named toy of the year at an
industry function earlier this year.
It could not immediately be learned
whether Aqua Dots beads are made in the same factories as the Bindeez product.
Both are sold by Australia-based Moose Enterprises.
The toy beads are sold in
general merchandise stores and over the Internet for use in arts and crafts
projects. They can be arranged into designs and fused together when sprayed with
Scientists say a chemical coating on the beads, when ingested,
metabolizes into the so-called date rape drug gamma hydroxy butyrate. When
eaten, the compound - made from common and easily available ingredients - can
induce unconsciousness, seizures, drowsiness, coma and death.
Naren Gunja
from Australia's Poisons Information Center said the drug's effect on children
was "quite serious ... and potentially life-threatening."
The recall was
announced by the Consumer Product Safety Commission on Wednesday several hours
after published reports about the recall in Australia.
recalls 155,000 toys for choking risk

The two U.S. children who
swallowed Aqua Dot beads went into nonresponsive comas, commission spokesman
Scott Wolfson said Wednesday afternoon.
In Australia, the toys were ordered
off store shelves on Tuesday when officials learned that a 2-year-old boy and a
10-year-old girl were hospitalized after swallowing the beads. A 19-month-old
toddler also was being treated.
The news jolted the toy industry because Aqua
Dots has been one of the few bright stars of the toy selling season, which,
along with overall retailing, has gotten off to a sluggish start. The item,
which had been heavily advertised, had appeared on many toy experts' list of
must-have holiday toys, and toy sellers are now in the midst of canceling
advertising and scrambling to figure out how to replace it.
Chris Byrne, a
New York-based toy consultant, noted that the incidents could have been
isolated, and Spin Master may be erring on the side of caution.
"This is
something that they could not have foreseen. This is an extremely hot toy. ...
It's a little scary," Byrne said.
In a statement, Toys "R" Us Inc., said that
it issued on Tuesday a "stop sale" on the entire Spin Master Aqua Dots product
line in its North American stores and on its Web site after it learned of the
news. "We understand that Spin Master and U.S. regulatory authorities are
investigating this product and we have asked Spin Master to fully explain what
it believes happened," said the toy seller in a statement.
Meanwhile, a
separate recall was announced for 405,000 children's products made in China,
most of them toy cars, because of dangerous levels of lead.
The recall
includes about 380,000 Pull-Back Action Toy Cars imported by Dollar General
Merchandising Inc. of Goodlettsville, Tenn., and 7,500 Dragster and Funny Car
toys imported by International Sourcing Ltd. of Springfield, Mo.
Four of the
recalled products were imported by Schylling Associates Inc. of Rowley, Mass.,
including the items Duck Family Collectable Wind-Up Toy, Dizzy Ducks Music Box,
"Robot 2000" collectable tin robot and Winnie-the-Pooh Spinning Top. The company
recalled another 66,000 spinning tops Aug. 22.
Representatives from Schylling
Associates Inc. were not immediately available for comment.
recalls include about 7,200 "Big Red" Wagons imported by Northern Tool &
Equipment Co. of Burnsville, Minn. Totaling about 405,700, the recalled
children's products all had excessive levels of lead in their surface
Although no illnesses connected to the toy car recall have been
reported, lead is toxic if ingested by young children. Children's products found
to have more than 0.06 percent lead accessible to users are subject to a

I am totally serious when I am telling everyone NO TOYS FOR CHRISTMAS PLEASE. We are going to invest in a good Folkmanis puppet that Kade really wants, art and craft supplies, and perhaps check out where the Playdoh toys are made because he adores them (wanna bet China???) This last recall DISGUSTS me beyond belief.

I was done with Made in China toys before, now I am full on boycotting them.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Breastfeeding leads to higher IQ in babies with the right gene

CHICAGO (AFP) - Scientists have identified a gene which leads children to have higher IQs if they are breastfed, according to a study released Monday.

The study took a bite out of the nature versus nurture debate by showing that intellectual development is influenced by both environmental and genetic factors.
"There has been some criticism of earlier studies about breastfeeding and IQ that they didn't control for socioeconomic status, or the mother's IQ or other factors," said study co-author Terrie Moffitt, a professor of psychological and brain sciences at Duke University and King's College in London.
"Our findings take an end-run around those arguments by showing the physiological mechanism that accounts for the difference."
Researchers examined more than 3,000 breast-fed infants in Britain and New Zealand and found that the child's IQ was an average of 6.8 points higher if the child had a particular version of a gene called FADS2.
This difference remained after researchers were able to rule out the influence of socioeconomic status, the IQ scores of the mother, birth weight and gestational age as factors.
"The argument about intelligence has been about nature versus nurture for at least a century," Moffitt said. "We're finding that nature and nurture work together."
Ninety percent of the children had at least one copy of version of the gene which yielded higher IQ if they were breast-fed.
The IQ scores of the other 10 percent were not influenced by breastfeeding, according to the study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
The gene was studied because it produces an enzyme found in breast milk which has been associated with higher IQ. The enzyme helps convert dietary fatty acids into the polyunsaturated fatty acids that have been shown to accumulate in the human brain during the first months after birth.
This enzyme and the fatty acids has been added to many infant formulas since the first findings about breastfeeding and IQ appeared a decade ago, but tests have not been able to show whether it has an impact.
The authors suggest that may be because those studies did not account for whether or not the gene was present.
Lab studies on rodents and primates fed supplemental fatty acids have shown enhanced abilities in tests of learning, memory and problem-solving.

Absolutely fascinating, that they have isolated this gene and figured out exactly how it works. I find it weird that 10% of the population don't have this gene, but really, that's a 90% chance that your child will have a higher IQ because you breastfeed them, absolutely amazing. I wonder why the formula doesn't appear to work the same when they tested, even tho its added to some? Maybe its like vitamins, reseachers flip -flop over whether they are useful for children under 3, BUT they all strongly agree that vitamins from natural food in a balanced diet are the best route.

Its about time they found some indisputable evidence, because like the article stated, they could never be proof-positive because they never could account for mother's IQ, socioeconomic status, race, etc etc. This skipped all those and went to the basic human building blocks, how we are created. Too cool!

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Welcome Winter!

If you can find a better definition for incongruous, I would like to know!