Originally published September 3 2008
Lead Exposure Causes Violent Crime in Children
by David Gutierrez, staff writer
(NaturalNews) Children who are exposed to lead before the age of seven are significantly more likely to be arrested for violent crimes as adults, according to a new study conducted by researchers from the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine and published in the journal PLoS Medicine.
Researchers used data from 250 women whose levels of lead had been measured while they were pregnant between 1979 and 1984, as well as lead measurements taken of the children up to the age of seven. These measurements were then compared with the Hamilton County, Ohio, adult arrest records of those children.
Fifty-five percent of those studied had been arrested at least once, with an average of five arrests between the ages of 18 and 24.
The researchers found that the higher a person's blood levels at any time in childhood, the more likely they were to have been arrested as adults.
"The strongest association was with violent criminal activity: murder, rape, domestic violence, assault, robbery and possession of weapons," researcher Kim N. Dietrich said.
Lead blood levels varied between four and 37 micrograms per decaliter, with each five microgram per decaliter increase at the age of six leading to a 50 percent rise in the chance of arrest as an adult.
The U.S. government recommends that blood levels of lead remain below 10 micrograms per decaliter. Approximately 310,000 children are believed to have levels above this threshold, however, while health professionals warn that even lower levels can be dangerous.
Lead is a known neurotoxin that can disrupt the development of children's brains.
In a recent study conducted by researchers from the Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, people with high levels of lead exposure during childhood were found to have brains an average of 1.2 percent smaller than the average for the general population.
Sources for this story include: www.latimes.com.
All content posted on this site is commentary or opinion and is protected under Free Speech. Truth Publishing LLC takes sole responsibility for all content. Truth Publishing sells no hard products and earns no money from the recommendation of products. NaturalNews.com is presented for educational and commentary purposes only and should not be construed as professional advice from any licensed practitioner. Truth Publishing assumes no responsibility for the use or misuse of this material. For the full terms of usage of this material, visit www.NaturalNews.com/terms.shtml