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Xenoestrogens (also called endocrine disrupters) are chemical compounds that are found in our environment and resemble oestrogen. The most well-known is Bysphenol A (BPA) but all phthalates are endocrine disrupters. They are used in plastics to make them more pliable and are easily absorbed through the skin and alimentary canal.  A BPA free alternative is not always a safe alternative.

 

Xenoestrogens add to our own oestrogenic load already burdened by the contraceptive pill, HRT, excess abdominal fat (known to induce oestrogen production),  dairy produce (known to contain oestrogen, especially if the cow is pregnant when milked) and poor gut flora (both a consequence and a cause of too much oestrogen). 

Endocrine disrupters need to be detoxified by the liver and contribute to symptoms of excess oestrogen. They also prevent androgenic hormones from exerting their balancing action and further disrupt hormones. Additionally they have been shown to directly induce proliferation and tumour formation in breast tissue. All these factors combine and dramatically increase our likelihood of developing either breast, prostate or testicular cancer in direct proportion with the amount of phthalates we have in our body.

Because xenoestrogen are easily absorbed through the skin, lungs and intestines, do not degrade well and are broadly found in our environment, we are all exposed to them and should be particularly mindful of their presence....

Phthalates are found in:

  • Cosmetics
  • The coatings of food and drinks cans
  • Water bottles
  • Baby bottles and pacifiers
  • Dental fillings and sealants
  • Contact lenses
  • DVDs and CDs
  • Credit card receipts
  • Garden hose
  • Vinyl gloves
  • Children toys
  • Sex toys

Other types of endocrine disrupters to look-out:

  • Perfumes and scents found in everything from cleaning materials to candles and car deodorisers (use essential oils instead)
  • Flame retardants in furniture, fabrics and carpets
  • Non-stick type chemicals used for cook-ware and stain resistant materials and carpet

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