We all know to never microwave plastic containers or leave a plastic water bottle to heat up in the car. And most people are aware it’s important to use natural cleaning and personal care products to avoid BPA and other chemical estrogens.
But these aren’t the only source of BPA and other estrogenic compounds in our environment. In fact, estrogen-mimicking compounds have snuck into a long list of foods and products that we innocently use on a daily basis.
This list will give you the rundown of things to avoid with a quick overview of why you must take action to protect yourself from estrogen overload today!
What Are Chemical Estrogens?
Also known as xenoestrogen, chemical estrogens are compounds found in the environment that are molecularly similar to the hormone estrogen. They are able to bind with receptors in the human body and disrupt release of hormones, especially estrogen and testosterone.
Women, men, and children can all experience hormone disruption from xenoestrogen exposure, although the effects may differ. For example, in women, the most pronounced effect appears to be an increase in estrogen with harmful elevations in testosterone as well. In men, xenoestrogen exposure is more likely to manifest as higher estrogen and lower testosterone. The bottom line is that chemical exposure is harmful and should be avoided at all costs.
For example, scientists have known for year that BPA exposure is associated with increased body fat. One theory for the obesity epidemic is the constant overload of BPA and related chemical estrogens that we are exposed to on a daily basis. But the dangers don’t end there: Chemical estrogens are linked with infertility, reproductive disorders (PMS, difficult menopause, andropause, erectile dysfunction), cancer, diabetes, heart disease, and immune disorders.
What Follows Are Common Sources Of Chemical Estrogens With Possible Substitutions:
#1: Fragrances: Air fresheners, perfume, and other artificial fragrances contain phthalates
Substitution: Essential Oils
#2: Plastics: Food containers, utensils, water bottles, etc. contain BPA and related chemicals
Substitution: Glass or steel containers and utensils
#3: Receipts: Cash register receipts and other coated paper products contain BPA
Substitution: Avoid taking them or have them emailed to you
#4: Canned Foods: Aluminum cans are lined with BPA and other xenoestrogens
Substitution: Fresh foods or brands that say BPA-free
#5: Sunscreen & Body Lotion: Contain parabens and other xenoestrogens
Substitution: Natural brands such as Attitude, All Good, Alba Botanica, Kiss My Face
#6: Detergents: Dish and laundry detergents contain parabens
Substitution: Natural detergents such as 7th Generation, Mrs. Meyers, Method
#7: Pesticides: Conventional crops can be exposed to high levels of xenoestrogens
Substitution: Buy organic or grow your own
#8: Cleaning Products: Sprays, bathroom cleaners, etc. contain parabens and phthalates
Substitution: Natural products such as 7th Generation, Mrs. Meyers, Method
#9: Shampoo & Other Personal Products: Contain parabens and phthalates
Substitutions: Natural options such as Allafia, Avalon Organics, Bert’s Bees, Badger
#10: Cosmetics: Lipstick, nail polish, foundation, etc., contain propylene glycol and phthalates
Here Are Ways Xenoestrogens Sneak Into Your Environment:
#1: Tap Water: High levels of chemical estrogens are overwhelming public water supplies.
Substitution: A high-quality water filter
#2: Candles: Contain petroleum and phthalates
Substitution: Beeswax candles or essential oil diffusers
#3: Advertisements: Will often label as “paraben-free” but contain phthalates
Substitution: Read ALL labels
#4: Advertisements #2: Will often label as “phthalate-free” but contain parabens or other estrogen analogues under the bracket “perfume” or “fragrance”
Substitution: Read ALL labels
#5: Birth Control: Surprise! The pill is a major source of excess estrogen for many women
Substitution: Talk to your doctor
#6: Food Dyes: Food dyes contain estrogen analogues, especially Red No. 3
Substitutions: Read ALL labels and use natural food colorings when cooking at home
#7: Food Preservatives: Preservatives such as BHA mimic estrogen
Substitution: Read All labels and avoid processed, packaged foods in general
#8: Household Supplies: Flooring, carpet, paint, etc. contain PCB and other estrogens
Substitution: These are often unavoidable, so get an air filter and take other actions on this list to lower your overall toxic load.
#9: Gasoline Odors: Gas contains benzene and other estrogen analogues
Substitution: Get an electric car
#10: Processed Foods: Plant-based estrogens are used abundantly in processed foods, especially soy, but also watch out for flax.
Substitution: Choose whole foods and read ALL labels for variations of soy (soy protein, soy isolate, soybean oil, etc.)
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