Are Our Kids as Healthy as Kids Were 45 Years Ago?

I heard Marvin Gaye’s song, Mercy Mercy Me, a couple of weeks ago.  I’d never paid attention to the lyrics of this 1971 song and didn’t see how they relate to children in 2015.  His prophetic lyrics have haunted me ever since.  Here are the lyrics in case you’ve missed them too:

Mercy Mercy Me

By Marvin Gaye

Mercy mercy me
Things ain’t what they used to be, no no
Where did all the blue skies go?
Poison is the wind that blows from the north and south and east

Mercy, mercy me, mercy
Things ain’t what they used to be, no no
Oil wasted on the ocean and upon our seas
Fish full of mercury

Mercy, mercy me
Things ain’t what they used to be, no no
Radiation under ground and in the sky
Animals and birds who live nearby are dying

Mercy, mercy me
Things ain’t what they used to be
What about this overcrowded land
How much more abuse from man can she stand?

Oh, na na na na na na na na na
My sweet Lord
My Lord, my sweet Lord

What’s Mercy Mercy Me Have to Do With Children’s Health?

It’s been almost 45 years since Marvin Gaye released this song, and the EPA has achieved substantial victories since then such as banning DDT, lead and arsenic.  However, new and not well understood chemicals are introduced into our environment every year.  These new toxins are everywhere – not just our air and water.  They are in our food and almost every product we use. And, they are a major contributor to an emerging constellation of chronic conditions in today’s children.

If Marvin Gaye were alive today, I believe he would look back on the health of children in 1971 and say:

Mercy Mercy Me

Kid’s Health Ain’t What It Used to Be

    • 1 in 6 have learning disabilities
    • 1 in 3 children have obesity
    • 1 in 3 have allergies
    • 1 in 8 have asthma
    • 1 in 10 have ADD
    • 1 in 50 have autism

The toxins in our food, medications and environment are making all of us sick – especially our children.  Statistics show that these conditions were rare in 1971.  Most people hadn’t even heard of some of them.

The good news is that by viewing these conditions as a product of environmental factors, we know how to reverse them.  There is an amazing crowd-funded documentary being developed by the good people at  They will show us how to protect and heal our kids. Here’s a description of their project:

“The Documenting Hope Project is supporting 14 chronically ill children through a healing and recovery journey. The children will come from five locations throughout the United States, and their illnesses will include autism, ADHD, asthma, juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, mood disorders, obesity/type II diabetes and atopic disease/eczema. Up to seven of these children will be featured in a groundbreaking feature-length documentary film, Canary Kids, which will spread the much-needed message of hope: Recovery is possible.”

If you would like to help fund the DocumentingHope project click here.

Check out DocumentingHope’s benefit concert featuring Michael Franti & Spearhead on February 7th, 2015 here.

The next time you’re talking with a group of parents, notice how frequently they mention chronic health, learning and behavior problems in their children.  You’ll be shocked.

In my next blog, I’ll give you tips for preventing and reversing chronic conditions in children – as well as adults.