Every day, we put our brains in harm’s way. We get too little sleep and seem to live in a near constant state of stress. Many of us participate in recreational or athletic activities that jolt and jar the brain. Even our daily commute has the potential for harm should we have an unexpected encounter with another vehicle. But did you know that there are other threats that could be silently and secretly destroying your brain from the inside out? While we all know that we live in a world full of toxic chemicals, most people don’t think about how these invisible invaders can harm their brains. One of the most hotly debated topics is the use of organophosphates (OPs) as pesticides on our food supply and in common areas such as golf courses and lawns. OPs were developed in the 1930s and 40s as human nerve gas agents. When those agents were no longer needed, the companies who created them looked for ways to continue selling their products and discovered they could be used as insecticides. One would think the origins of this toxin would be scary enough, and common sense tells us that the more chemicals sprayed on and around fields and living areas, the more those toxins will show up in our bodies to cause harm. Yet our government is allowing, and even encouraging, this practice to continue. Recently, researchers have discovered that these chemicals are especially dangerous for some of our most vulnerable populations such as pregnant women and children, leading to brain-destroying health risks such as attention and memory deficit disorders, autism and lower IQs in children—all now being diagnosed in epidemic proportions. One report from researchers showed that babies whose moms lived within a mile of crops being treated with OPs were 60% more likely to develop autism. A study done by the University of California, Davis is the third project to link prenatal exposure to pesticides to autism and related disorders. Information gained from data and literature on OPs from the United Nations database reported by 71 countries asserts that these chemicals are such a threat to the health of children and pregnant women they should be banned. Bruce Lanphear, professor of Health Sciences at Simon Fraser University in British Columbia states, “We found no evidence of a safe level of organophosphate pesticide exposure for children. Well before birth, organophosphate pesticides are disrupting the brain in its earliest stages, putting them on track for difficulties in learning, memory and attention—effects which may not appear until they reach school-age.” Can we be surprised by this result when the chemical itself was derived from nerve gas? While we may not be able to completely avoid OPs, we can all make a difference and it’s quite simply this: We live in a supply-and-demand world. Start demanding organic, pesticide-free food and the industry will be forced to supply it! There is no better way to protect your brain and safeguard your health and the health of your family than by purchasing certified organic food whenever possible or growing your own food if you can. In instances where organic choices aren’t available, be sure to wash foods thoroughly before eating, even if you plan on peeling your fruits and vegetables. Avoid chemical-laden processed food as much as possible, keeping in mind that if we stop buying it, they’ll stop making it. It’s up to each of us as individuals to do what we can to protect the next generation. If you need motivation in making those healthy food choices, be sure to check out our BrainTap Nutrition Support Series. We have 20 sessions designed to help you make the healthiest choices for your body and your life. Click here to get started braintapping with our FREE TRIAL.