Gender Bending Chemicals - Blog
A major study has just been released stating that a huge number of everyday things we use and take for granted as being safe, ranging from plastics to cosmetics and food actually contain substances that feminise boys and likely cause a great many of the diseases of modern life. The landmark study has just been published by the World Health Organisation (WHO) on the health effects of a class of substances called ‘Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals’ (EDC’s). The endocrine system is a signalling system composed of glands and some organs that secrete hormones responsible for regulating many essential bodily functions. The list includes metabolism, weight control, appetite, sexual characteristics, growth, tissue function, sleep, moods and many other areas. The effects of these hormones last from hours to weeks. Is obvious from a list of effects that include whether we get fat, how we grow, whether we express feminine characteristics (or not), how our tissues develop and even our moods – there are serious consequences if it doesn’t work. In a marked turnaround from the same report a decade ago the WHO now says many substances in our environment ARE likely responsible for disrupting this system. There is credible evidence now linking these chemicals to breast cancer, prostate cancer, infertility, birth defects, asthma and childhood leukaemia. The WHO report stated that in animal studies there was ‘very strong evidence’ they could interfere with thyroid hormones, which are associated with brain damage, stunted intelligence, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, autism and thyroid cancer. Chemicals in plastics are ‘feminising’ young boys and causing girls to develop breasts before the age of 10. The effects of these substances are likely to worsen during pregnancy, as the chemicals have an effect on the expression of genes, which can lead to birth defects and other issues. Later in life, they can lead to breast and prostate cancers, and almost certainly many others. We have been consistently told by the WHO and numerous other so-called regulatory agencies (like the FDA in the United States) that levels of these substances in humans are too low to affect our health. This now appears to be incorrect, and similarly to the ridiculous high bar they set before a pharmaceutical drug is recalled, we have the same situation with these products. The regulatory agencies consistently act in the best interests of giant businesses, and our health always comes second. No one wants to rock the boat, unless they are backed into a corner, the spotlight is on them and the old excuses involving ‘plausible deniability’ no longer work. They have created a regime, whereby, when a major problem is identified through numerous studies … no one really wants to look too hard, heck, you might find something. And if you do, then you might have to do something about it. We have all wondered for a long time why all these ‘lifestyle’ diseases are infecting our populations, diabetes, cancers, heart disease, the swag of brain derailments that keep drug companies in business with antidepressants and amphetamine like substances like Ritalin. This is not to say that these substances are the only cause, they are not, but they are a major contributing factor. Some people will not get sick, and it is likely that someone else, perhaps, with another risk factor or a genetic predisposition will get sick. It’s this kind of ambiguity that allows the chemical companies responsible for these substances to make excuses, such as the statement from the American Chemistry Council and the International Council of Chemical Associations that both argue the WHO document ignores the role played by other factors such as lifestyle. In the last hundred years we have invented a vast amount of new substances, the substances were all put on the market with flimsy safety data obtained from short term unrepresentative trials (or most likely, no trials whatsoever) that, in no way identify the real risk of long term, low level exposure in humans. Once on the market, the rules are abruptly changed. The bar representing the ‘burden of proof’ stating that that the products are unsafe, is raised to lofty heights, and so the products stay on the market, poisoning us all. So, how ubiquitous are these substances? This is the really difficult part, they are literally everywhere. They are in flame retardants in your carpet, curtains and couch coverings. They are in your cosmetics, perfumes and hairsprays. They are in the linings of tin cans and children’s toys, the plastic of your computer, phone, and credit cards. They are in agricultural chemicals, plastic knives and forks, soaps toothpastes and chopping boards... and they get into our system through contact, aging of plastics, dust, food, and through our skin. You may have heard of Bisphenol A (BPA), the media ran stories on it last year because it is found in babies bottles. Anything that affects babies has an emotional appeal that obligates change, and now they are sold with a ‘BPA Free’ label. One type of product changed, that’s all. From this incomplete list you can see that the effect is likely that of a drop in the ocean. BPA is found in the laquer lining of canned food products.
Here are a couple of examples of the types of products involved and the diseases they are linked to;Phalates: Found in cosmetics, children’s toys, PVC floorings, shower curtains and credit cards. Linked to; diabetes, asthma, male reproductive defects leading to infertility. Bisphenol A (BPA): Found in many clear plastics, including baby bottles (most will say BPA free now), till receipts, tin can linings. Linked to; fertility problems, breast cancer, prostate cancer and heart disease. Bromilated Flame retardants: Found in furniture coverings, carpets and rugs, even the cases of appliances such as mobile phones. Linked to; hyperactivity, learning difficulties, low sperm count and difficulties becoming pregnant
Can we do anything about it?The best we can hope for is damage control, minimising exposure by making small changes to our lifestyle, start with the low hanging fruit. You are not going to stop driving your car, using your computer or mobile phone, but you might look at your vast array of personal care products that you spray on every day. There are cosmetic options (for instance) that don’t contain parabens; a class of substances used as preservatives. Store food and drinks in glass where possible and buying some of your food from organic stores would also be a big help. A quick Google search for ‘gender bending chemicals’ will find many articles already. I really didn’t know where to start with this article, the list of implicated substances, associated products - and their health effects are too large for a book, let alone an article. What I do know for sure is that this is only the start. Some regulatory bureaucrat somewhere finally lifted up a rock and looked under it, and said yes we have a real problem. Daniel King MSc (hons)
February 27, 2013 Categories: Health and Well Being