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Protecting Grandparents From Mercury

Protecting Grandparents From Mercury

By Laura Michelle Burns, Moms Clean Air Force

If you’re anything like me, you fall into the category of women who are caring for their children and their parents or grandparents. My aunt and my grandmother are both in their 70s. I’m grateful that they are in good health and are active. But I will confess that I worry about them the most when they are up visiting Lake Erie with their friends. It may sound silly, but I worry because they always tell me about the wonderful local, fresh caught fish they had each trip.

Growing up, I spent a lot of my summers visiting Port Clinton and Marblehead on the Lake Erie coast. Even as I type this, I can see myself sitting in a corner booth of a small Ohio diner watching the fishing boats pull up to the dock to sell their morning’s catch. I ate a lot of fresh caught fish sandwiches with my aunt and grandmother. I know they taste amazing! But what I know now is that those fish are tainted with mercury. Lake Erie is surrounded by coal-fired plants that spew mercury into our air. Mercury in the air doesn’t stay in one place, it is absorbed into the water droplets in the air and circulated through the clouds, and eventually rains down into our lake.

We know what mercury does our our children. Today though, I’d like to highlight what mercury does to our children’s grandparents. Since mercury is a neurotoxin, it functions in the degradation of the brain. A child’s brain is impacted by mercury in a way that can hinder the child from reaching their full potential. An adult’s brain has already developed and is now used to maintain the information necessary for everyday life and beyond.

6 Facts About Mercury:

  • Mercury can have an effect on the Central Nervous System, specifically the brain, by concentrating in the cerebral spinal fluid.
  • It can also inhibit the microtubules in the brain which then reduce the nerves’ function and their communication.
  • Our brains rely on the communication between the nerves to do things like remembering what it felt like to hold our baby for the first time, or how to sing “The Itsy Bitsy Spider.”
  • As we age and these memories aren’t so recent, we rely more and more on our brains to retain them.
  • Alzheimer’s disease was reported to affect an estimated 5.4 million Americans in 2011.
  • Research has shown that mercury can be a causal factor in Alzheimer’s disease…even more so than the concerns of thimerosal being a leading factor in autism!

Of course, I want my family to be able to enjoy their summer visiting Lake Erie. I want them to eat and be as carefree as the day allows. But I also don’t want to worry that their memories could be affected by their unwitting consumption of mercury. This summer, as excited as I am to share my days with family, I’ll be encouraging them to skip the fish and order a burger instead. I know that memories can fade in time, but I’d hate to hurry it along with a side of mercury to accompany their catch of the day!

PLEASE TAKE ACTION WITH MOMS CLEAN AIR FORCE

 

Related:
Mercury: the Culprit of Mysterious Health Problems
An Interview with Dr. Philip Landigan, Mercury Expert
New Mercury Warning for Tuna

Read more: Aging, Alzheimer's, Conditions, Diet & Nutrition, Environment, Family, Food, Health, Healthy Aging, Nature, , , ,

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Moms Clean Air Force

Moms Clean Air Forceis a community of moms, dads and others fighting for clean air and the health of future generations. Follow them on Twitter @ MomsCAF.

22 comments

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7:31PM PDT on Jun 5, 2012

It would have been helpful to know how long mercury from ingested fish actually stays in the body. ? Otherwise, good article.

6:03PM PDT on Jun 5, 2012

Thanks

5:29PM PDT on Jun 4, 2012

Thanks for the important info!

4:17PM PDT on Jun 3, 2012

Thanks for the info.

4:00PM PDT on Jun 2, 2012

Mercury-containing vaccines are even worse in some ways- injecting rather than ingesting bypasses some of the body's natural defenses and detox mechanisms. Flu shots especially are pushed on the elderly like crack cocaine and contain a full complement of mercury.

10:52AM PDT on Jun 1, 2012

Good info

5:57PM PDT on May 31, 2012

thx!

3:41PM PDT on May 31, 2012

Thanks.

3:41PM PDT on May 31, 2012

wouldn't it depend on where the fish came from and how much or often you eat it!

3:35PM PDT on May 31, 2012

I think a few servings of fish consumed on a yearly vacation can hardly be enough to destroy the brain of a healthy grandmother. That mercury "can be a causal factor of Alzheimer" but only if it is consumed over longer periods and in greater quantities. Just let your aunt and grandmother enjoy what years they have left. If they have no signs of Alzheimer's now, that little mercury is not going to matter.

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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