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A gluten-free diet may have a downside: increased blood levels of arsenic and mercury, according to a preliminary report. Concentrations of urinary arsenic in those on the gluten free diet were nearly twice as high as in those not on it. Blood levels of inorganic mercury were also significantly higher in gluten-free dieters. Click here to read article.
The CDC reported three new pediatric deaths from influenza. So far this season, there have been a total of eight pediatric deaths. The CDC said there is still time for all children over the age of 6 months to get a flu vaccine, as several weeks in the flu season remain.
Reuters (1/27, Grover) reported the Food and Drug Administration on Friday “said…it has found high amounts of” belladonna, a toxic substance, “in homeopathic teething tablets, warning of its potential risk to infants and children.” The FDA also stated that it has “asked Standard Homeopathic Co, the manufacturer of Hyland’s teething products, to recall its homeopathic teething tablets from the market,” but “the company did not agree.”
On its website, NBC News (1/27, Fox) reported that belladona “is an extract of the deadly nightshade plant,” has hallucinogenic properties, and “is highly toxic in large amounts.” According to FDA Center for Drug Evaluation and Research Director Janet Woodcock, MD, “The body’s response to belladonna in children under 2 years of age is unpredictable and puts them at unnecessary risk. We recommend that parents and caregivers not give these homeopathic teething tablets to children and seek advice from their health care professional for safe alternatives.