A recent study published in Breastfeeding Medicine seems to put to rest the question of whether environmental toxins in mothers' milk pose a threat to babies.
The New York Times recently reported:
Researchers reviewed data from three studies, among them a Dutch study of 418 infants and mothers, half of whom breast-fed and half of whom used formula; a smaller Dutch study of 38 mothers that assessed the impact of different levels of dioxin exposure; and a German study of 232 mothers and babies who had been exposed to dioxin before birth.
The studies noted minor differences among the exposed babies, such as higher levels of thyroid hormones and lower blood platelet counts, compared to infants who were not exposed to dioxins. But the researchers said these differences did not appear to have any impact on the children’s health and development, and they emphasized that the measures were not abnormal.
The study's author also pointed out that formula can also contain environmental toxins. I posed a similar question to Dr. Kathleen Arcaro of the University of Massachusetts a while back. Dr. Arcaro studies environmental toxins in breastmilk, among other things, and you can read her response here.