“Be moderate in order to taste the joys of life in abundance.”~Epicurus
I am wicked careful about a few things safety-wise with my five children. Water. Vitamins. Traffic. Fire. Strangers.
Of course there are other things but for the purposes of this blog that's my list.I've always been in charge of the vitamin domain in our home. I order 'em, I store 'em, I divy 'em out every morning.
My BFF from Brown is a pediatrician and she told me a tragic story years ago. Her 18 month old patient's Mom was pregnant. They were vacationing in Mexico and the toddler got a hold of his Mom's prenatal vitamins and ate them all. His parents rushed him to the emergency room, but they said he was fine. No need to pump his stomach.
Their vacation was ending and they flew home. When they got home the parents took their child to my BFF for a check up because they were worried. He didn't seem right.
My friend was horrified and devastated. The child's stomach should have been pumped and she knew it was too late. She explained to me that once a lethal dose of iron is in the system for a certain amount of time you cannot extract it. You can't get it out of the body and it will kill you.
So the child passed away.
Tragic. Devastating. And avoidable.
So I've always been super OCD about the gummy vitamins. I store them so way up high that only I can reach them if standing on a chair and really reaching. They are in a cabinet over the microwave so you cannot access them from climbing on the counter. Super safe.One morning over the summer on Nantucket Philippe gave our son Phoenix, age 7, the gummy vitamins to divvy up. I didn't know this had happened or I would have been on it, but it did, and a few hours later I walked into the boys' bedroom to find the twins, age 4, polishing off the bottle of fruit/veggie gummy vitamins. Next to that bottle was the bottle of gummy multi-vitamins--unopened thank God. The omega-3 gummy vitamins were also in the lineup. There was about half of a bottle left of those.
My whole body started shaking and because of my daily yoga practice I was aware enough to know that I needed to stay calm and focused and do what needed to be done.
So I focused on my breath --in and out of my nose --and attempted to speak slowly and calmly.
I learned what had gone down and thank the universe the twins had "only" consumed the fruit/veggie gummy vitamins, which contained no iron. I read the multi vitamin label and they did not contain iron either. Probably for just this reason. Neither did the omega-3's.
Still I was shaking and not satisfied with moving on. I called poison control and told the woman what had happened. I read her the labels of all three vitamin bottles. She calmly said, "This happens all the time with gummy vitamins. Don't worry about it. Even if they ate all three of the bottles they would be fine. There's not enough in them to hurt them and also because of the gummy consistency, very little is absorbed anyway."I was incredibly relieved, but persisted. I asked her many more questions, remembering my BFFs tragic story of her poor patient.
The twins were fine and are fine. I chucked all of those gummy vitamins and will never buy them again.
1. It ain't worth it. Ain't worth the risk.2. From what sister at poison control told me, they ain't absorbed anyhow! Big waste of time, energy, and money.
This morning I asked Phoenix, age 7, if he loved his chocolate Cheerios for breakfast. He replied, "Yeah mommy, but look. There's 25% iron in them. That's bad!"
I explained to him that a little iron is good and that it is safe because it is in food --and so not super concentrated – and only 25% of what his little body needs every day.
I talked to him about how in general, everything is good in moderation.
And the Buddha's wise words ring true yet again, "Find the middle way."
Have the best day ever!
Taylor plus 5
**This blog is dedicated to all parents who have lost a child due to a vitamin overdose. I send them light, love and healing every day.**