What Are Xenoestrogens?
Xenoestrogens (my AutoCorrect wants to correct this to Fenestrae’s. I don’t even know what that is. That’s how little-known these are) are hormone disruptors that are in everything in our home! They can be found in our food, bath products, makeup, cleaning products, plastic, and more. The prefix xeno- means foreign. Xenoestrogens are foreign estrogens we ingest or absorb through our skin and which affect our hormones.
Accumulating evidence suggests that xenoestrogens are largely responsible for steadily declining fertility rates in both sexes over past decades. This article explains that sperm counts have decreased in 21 countries by an average of 50% since 1938, a time period free of xenoestrogens. Studies also suggest that these estrogen imitators contribute to – or cause – conditions such as PCOS, endometriosis, and estrogen-sensitive cancers such as breast, prostate, ovarian, and uterine cancer.
- Parabens – food and cosmetic preservative
- Phosphates – food flavor and color enhancer
- Phthalates – softener found in cosmetics and plastics such as food packaging
- Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) – food and cosmetic thickener/emulsifier
- Fragrance/Parfum (unless specified as a natural or essential oil blend) – this is sometimes added even to “organic” or “free and clear” products
- Triclosan – found in antibacterial hand soap, particularly those used in hospitals
- Hormonal birth control – YES, I listed hormonal birth control in the same list of ingredients added to the food we eat
You’re going to want to read this: Nontoxic, Fertility-Friendly Body and Cleaning Products that Actually Work
How Do They Work?
There’s enough science talk in infertility, so here’s the down and dirty.
Xenoestrogens can mimic the body’s natural estrogen because they have similar structures to one another. Xenoestrogens can therefore bind to estrogen receptors. Think of it as a key fitting inside a lock. With the xenoestrogen “key” is already inside the lock, there is no room for natural estrogen. Since xenoestrogens are weaker than natural estrogens, they cause a hormonal imbalance, which creates an array of health problems.
Start reading ingredients labels on your food, bath, and cleaning products. Having an awareness of what we put on and into our bodies is the first step toward eliminating these nasty chemicals from our homes and creating the best environment for our babies-to-be from the moment of conception.
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