In the last two decades there has been a growing awareness of the possible adverse effects in humans and wildlife from exposure to chemicals that can interfere with the endocrine system.Before we talk about why this is so, let’s cover the basics:
What is the Endocrine System?
The endocrine system is a network of glands in your body that make the hormones that help cells talk to each other. They’re responsible for almost every cell, organ, and function in your body.
If your endocrine system isn’t healthy, you might have problems developing during puberty, getting pregnant, or managing stress. You also might gain weight easily, have weak bones, or lack energy because too much sugar stays in your blood instead of moving into your cells where it’s needed for energy. (from Webmd.com)
What are Endocrine Disruptors(EDs)?
Endocrine Disruptors (EDs) are substances in our environment, food, and consumer products that interfere with the way our hormones work.These effects can include:
- developmental malformations,
- interference with reproduction – alterations in sperm quality and fertility, endometriosis, early puberty, awfully painful periods, irregular periods
- metabolic issues and even mood swings
- thyroid issues
- cognitive challenges
- increased cancer risk; and
- disturbances in the immune and nervous system function.
- …to mention, but a few.
Now, I want to make mention of the infallible truth that, I am a Christian and believe in the power of God, more than anything else in this life. So yes, I do believe that God is able to, and will protect us from sickness and diseases. However, it is important to not neglect the truth that remains: as we open ourselves to God, He leads into the path of truth and wisdom to apply ourselves in the right ways, including that which we should consume. The bible never said bodily exercise profiteth nothing. In comparison to Spiritual exercise, the Bible says it profiteth little.
Whether now, or at some point in our lives, we have all gone through/are going through a phase where we notice “I am just not feeling my very best”. The first question should be ‘what should I be doing differently?’ instead of just jumping for the nearest pain medication/prescription.
Doing things differently does not mean you have a “fear” of sickness or death. It means applying yourself in the right way/wisdom.To know better, is to DO better. Period. The simple fact that you can identify with one item on the list above, is enough reason for you to be concerned with toxins and the elimination of them. While I know we may not be able to all the things immediately, as much as it depends on you -if you are able to implement preventative measures- my advice is that you do so.
Start where you are, with you are able. It could be eliminating BPA, one storage container at a time. It could be reading ingredients one item in your pantry at a time. It certainly could be eliminating junk, one sugary substance from your diet at a time. Just start where you are with what you are able to.
I always say this: refuse to be intimidated by people (including myself) who may be farther ahead in their journey. We all started from zero. So can you 🙂
How can my family be exposed to Endocrine Disruptors?
Here are a few things to look out for:
- Industrial chemicals and pesticides: These can leach into soil and groundwater, and make their way into the food chain by building up in fish, animals, and people.
- Non-organic produce can have pesticide residues, and this is why the term ‘organic’ is all the rage.
- A huge percentage of mainstream consumer products contain, or are packaged in containers which can leach Endocrine Disruptors, such as household chemicals, fabrics treated with flame retardants, cosmetics, lotions, products with fragrance, and anti-bacterial soaps. Be on the lookout for, and try your best to stay away from names like BPA, Lead, Phthalates, Tricoslan, Parabens, Fragrance, Natural Flavors, Glyphosate
- Processed foods can accumulate traces of EDs that leach out of materials used in manufacturing, processing, preservation, transportation, and storage.
- Commercial soy-based products contain phytoestrogens, which are chemicals produced by plants that mimic estrogen
What can I do to Eliminate Endocrine Disruptors?
While there are things that are beyond our control like the quality of the air we breathe, and certain medical procedures (like catheters and IV infusions) that can put EDs like phthalates in our bodies, we can control a lot of other things.
- Reduce consumption of canned and processed foods.
- Reduce consumption of farm-raised fish. Stay with wild caught fish and small fishes like sardines. Fun fact: you are better of eating sardines, than (fish farm-raised) tilapia. Sardines are #1 on top 3 BEST fishes to consume, while tilapia is rated #1 on the list of TOP 3 WORST fishes to consume.
- Do no deep fry already fatty meat. Rather, cook the meat in its fat IF you prefer to keep the fat versus trimming it.
- Thoroughly wash fruits and vegetables in vinegar before consuming them.
- Do NOT microwave plastic food containers or use them for storing hot liquids.
- Avoid plastic containers designated #3, #6, and #7
- Use glass, porcelain, or stainless-steel containers when possible, especially for hot food and drinks.
- Prepare more meals at home and emphasize fresh ingredients.
- Consider using a water filter.
- If possible, purchase organic produce, meat, and dairy products.
- Replace older non-stick pans with newer ceramic-coated pans.
- Eat a diversified diet with plenty of variety.
- Choose products labeled “Phthalate-Free”, “BPA-Free”, and “Paraben-Free”.
- Avoid personal care products with fragrances and opt for cosmetics labeled “no synthetic fragrance”, “scented only with essential oils”.
- If you have kids, avoid plastic toys, ESPECIALLY aged/ hand-me-down plastic toys.
Remember, Start where you are, with what you are able. Small changes at a time, are bound to make a huge transformation in your life.
I hope you found this blogpost helpful, and feel empowered to make some changes for a healthier, happier you.
Always in Love and Health,