Children at Risk: Five Factors

1. Children spend 90% of their time indoors.

As a consequence of safety concerns, increased screen time, and overscheduled lives, today's children have limited opportunities for outdoor play, and instead spend most of their lives indoors in increasingly synthetic and toxic environments.

2. Children's immature immune systems are not fully developed, and they cannot detoxify and eliminate contaminants.

Children's immune systems aren't fully developed until they are well into kindergarten and beyond. Their natural defense mechanisms are simply not able to handle the levels of exposure to toxins that they face in most indoor environments. Brain growth is at an all time high during early childhood, and once disruption occurs in the nervous system, it is very difficult—if not impossible—to repair. Early exposure can cause subtle changes in the way internal organs function over time.

3. Children's small bodies take in proportionally larger quantities of food, air, and liquid than adults.

With respiration rates that are twice that of adults, and significantly faster metabolisms, children inhale and ingest far more pollutants, pound per pound, than adults—with a greater chance of being harmed.

4. Children spend more time on the floor, where contaminants are most prevalent.

Children put things in their mouths, play on the floor, and stir things up with their movement. Whether chewing on paint chips or PVC toys, or sitting on new synthetic carpeting, children are at far greater risk of toxic exposure simply because of their size, developmental interests, and the tendency of toxins to hang low to the ground.

5. More than 75,000 chemicals have been introduced into our environment in the past 50 years, most of them with little or no consideration to their impact upon human health, especially that of children .

Fewer than half of these 75,000 chemicals have been tested for toxicity to humans, even fewer to children. Health experts have become increasingly aware of the links between the staggering incidence of childhood illnesses and these chemicals.