Raising Healthy Children

The Newsletter of the Children's Environmental Health Center               December 2011 

Our Mission: Protecting Children Against Environmental Threats to Health

Dr. Landrigan

Dr. Philip J. Landrigan

Director, CEHC
In This Issue
NEXT MEETING: Fracking and Children's Health
About the CEHC
Dear Friends of the Children's Environmental Health Center:

Happy holidays from our team at CEHC!


As our gift to you, we have dedicated our December issue of Raising Healthy Children to helping you identify the safest gifts  for your children.  When reviewing holiday presents, make sure to follow our simple guidelines. 


We also share our Greening Our Children  green  tip of the week, which teaches how to pick safer holiday candles for your home.  


Wishing you a happy and healthy holiday season!




Philip J. Landrigan, MD, MSc

Director, Children's Environmental Health Center

Mount Sinai School of Medicine

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Our Guide to Choosing Safer Toys
Read labels and avoid bright, painted products.
This holiday season, make sure only the safest gifts enter your home.  From lead in painted toys to cadmium in costume jewelry, certain presents can bring unsafe toxins into your house.

To choose the safest holiday gifts, our team recommends following these simple guidelines:  

  • Check to make sure your toys are painted with lead-free paint.   
  • Stay clear of brightly painted toys; these often contain high levels of lead.
  • Look for labels that read PVC-free or BPA-free when choosing plastic toys. 
  • Avoid older toys and hand-me-downs; they may not meet current safety standards.

Which toys are the safest?  Dr. Landrigan recommends the following alternatives:

  • Unpainted wooden toys.
  • Toys made from natural materials, like wool or cotton. 
  • Sporting equipment, like gloves and balls.
  • Books and magazines.   
Less is more!  When choosing toys for your children, it is important to remember that less presents are better, says Mount Sinai pediatrician Susan Samuels, MD.  According to Dr. Samuels, who was quoted in last week's Huffington Post, "too many gifts can be overstimulating for children."

To learn more about safe and healthy gifts, visit Kids Health's
guide or check out Healthy Child Healthy World's trusted partners.
Green Tip of the Week: Choose Safer Candles


Each week, we will be posting a new green tip on the Greening Our Children online journal.  Greening Our Children is our annual benefit luncheon, with all proceeds benefiting CEHC's research into the environmental causes of childhood disease.  
This week, our team  teaches you how to choose safer candles. Click here to learn more. 
Each Monday, make sure to check www.MountSinaiGOCluncheon.org
for new tips on how to keep your children healthy!
Did you miss our annual symposium?

Visit www.vimeo.com/channels/toxicchemicals
to watch presentations from "How Can We Avoid the Effects of Toxic Chemicals?"

The next Greening Our Children Meeting is Tuesday, January 24, 2012.


Featuring a presentation by Kevin Chatham-Stephens, MD, 

who will discuss how fracking affects children's health.


10:00am - 12:00pm

Audubon Greenwich
631 Riversville Road,
Greenwich, CT  


Click here to download the flier

Click here to RSVP  


Click here to see photos from our last meeting


Learn more about the event at www.MountSinaiGOCluncheon.org

About the Children's Environmental Health Center 



Formally established in 2007, the Mount Sinai Children's Environmental Health Center (CEHC) builds on Dr. Philip J. Landrigan's three decades of work in children's environmental health and fifteen years of research in environmental pediatrics at Mount Sinai. CEHC has established itself as a leading source of scientifically credible information on issues related to children's health and the environment. Our mission is to protect children against environmental threats to health. We do this by guiding, supporting, and building the programs of the Department of Preventive Medicine at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine. 




In 2010, the Mount Sinai Children's Environmental Health Center was designated a Collaborating Centre in Children's Environmental Health by the World Health Organization.