In an analysis of commercially available mineral waters, the researchers found evidence of estrogenic compounds leaching out of the plastic packaging into the water. (full article)
Think your safe, just because you choose plastics that are “BPA Free”?
Many plastic products are now marketed as BPA-free, and manufacturers have begun substituting other chemicals whose effects aren’t as well known.
But it’s still unclear whether people are being harmed by BPA or any other so-called estrogenic chemicals in plastics.
And yes, this includes your beloved plastic water bottles.
So what does this mean to you?
Well ladies, do you find you suffer from PMS symptoms? Get a little overly-emotional for no good reason? Got a little extra fat that you are tired of trying to lose? Your plastic may be hurting your cause!
Let me break it down for you: we all have estrogen receptors in our bodies. What are those? As cancer.gov puts it:
An estrogen receptor is a protein molecule found inside those cells that are targets for estrogen action. Estrogen receptors contain a specific site to which only estrogens (or closely related molecules) can bind.
Well what are those “closely related molecules”?? Glad you asked! Those can be, among other things, those nasty chemicals in your plastics that mimic estrogen! That is what is called, “Xenoestrogen”, which as Wikipedia defines it:
Xenoestrogens are a type of xenohormone that imitates estrogen. They are widely used industrial compounds such as PCB, BPA and Phthalates, that have estrogenic effects on a living organism even though they differ chemically from the naturally occurring estrogenic substances internally produced by the endocrine system of the organism. Their potential ecological and human health impact is currently under extensive study by many scientific institutions and independent researchers.
What does all of that mean? Essentially it means that your plastic cups, dishes, storage containers, etc. contain chemicals that leach (soak) into your food and beverages, which you then consume, which then fools your body into thinking are estrogen. The problem with that? You’re already producing estrogen! So what does your poor body think? That there is now an abundance of estrogen! And what happens with all of that extra estrogen having a party in your system? PMS, menopausal symptoms, depression, weight gain, and even increased risk of female related disease (think breast cancer). Even more research is finding that xenoestrogens act like free radicals and cause too much of this feminine hormone to be present – causing premature puberty and accelerating other types of cancers in the body.
And this is not just a concern in women. Have you noticed a big push lately to have men tested for, and receive supplements for, low testosterone issues? I was just at the doctor recently and saw a poster on the wall offering testosterone tests! Well just like with women, a man’s body can be affected by these xenoestrogens and it is similar to the affects of a man taking estrogen (in lower doses, obviously). But if you think about it, how much food/beverages contained in plastic containers have you and the men in your life consumed in a lifetime?
So consider a plastic makeover! Instead of those plastic containers for food storage, consider the glass storage bowls. I personally love the versatility of mason jars, and you can get them SUPER cheap at the Dollar Tree Online. Just don’t forget to order those BPA-free lids to go with them. Also, if you want to take your food storage a step further, invest $25 to get the handheld FoodSaver Vaccuum System with a jar attachment!
Also, in lieu of all of those plastic water bottles, my hubby and I have saved a fortune, and our bodies, by getting a water filtration system for our tap, and getting some of these inexpensive glass bottles with stoppers. Plus, it makes us feel super-fancy to serve water in the swing-top bottles. Tres chic.
For further reading on this topic, as well as how xenoestrogens in your environment (including in your household cleaners, air fresheners, and more) may be causing hormone imbalance in you and your family, check out this amazing book, “Hormone Balance: A Matter of Life and Health“. You can get it to your Kindle or Kindle App.
This is also a great read: http://www.wsn.org/cbe/hormone.html