QUESTION: Lead and Pregnancy? - Fact sheets.
05 Jul 2006, County Wexford Ireland
I have had hair mineral analyses done at regular intervals over the last number of years (with a view to having optimum mineral status to conceive). About 2 and a half years ago the lead levels in the samples began to rise (which coincided with late pregnancy). I breastfed my baby wholly and then partly for about 20 months up to Feb this year. In Feb, my hair analysis gave lead levels of 4, four months later in June my hair analysis shows lead levels of 8. I cannot understand why the lead levels continue to rise, despite mineral/vitamin supplementation and following the guidelines for reducing lead levels. I would love to have a second child but with these lead levels would be afraid to even try for one. Also age is not on my side, so I need a solution fast. Can you give me any help? Thank you. Any connection? A year and a half ago an x-ray of my knees revealed early changes of arthritis.
ANSWER: 06 Jul 2006
It is recommended that you do a blood test since hair analysis is less
reliable than blood test. The recommended blood lead level is to be less
than 10 µg/dL. However, it's always better to be as low as possible.
Regarding the breastfeeding, it is the best way to feed the baby since the
lead content is filtered as they pass through the blood. The lead level in
breast milk can go as far as 5% of the mother's blood lead level. Therefore,
if the mother has a lead level of 10 µg/dL, the amount of lead that is
transferred through the breast milk can be as high as 5% of 10 µg/dL.
Breastfeeding is the best option to feed the baby because it has the
important nutrients for the baby.
"QUESTION: "Does lead affect arthritis?"
1) Lead exposure can induce a gout-like syndrome in joints.
In addition to this information, I will also send you an info pack about
reproductive health in relation to lead. I hope this information may help
The components of our Info Pack 6 on Reproductive Health and Lead which are available in electronic format are as follows along with the attachments:
"Problems In The Twentieth Century : Toxic Metals - Information To Help You Safeguard your Baby by Avoiding Toxins - And Why you Need To Do So - Chapter 7 of Planning For A Healthy Baby, p.82-92 "
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