plastic chemicals

Study Suggests We're Eating Shampoo Chemicals

A common plastic chemical used in everything from shampoo to vinyl flooring is turning up in our food, according to the new research.

Study Suggests We're Eating Shampoo Chemicals

What's really in the food you're eating?

RODALE NEWS, EMMAUS, PA—Phthalates are everywhere. The plasticizing, hormone-disrupting chemicals are commonly used in shampoos, lotions, soaps, cleaners, and perfumes to carry artificial fragrances, in makeup to keep the product sticking to your skin longer, and to soften rigid plastic into flexible vinyl products. Although exposure has been linked to disruptive or problem behavior in kids, eczema, asthma, and other ills, the chemical is still in wide use. And according to a 2010 study published in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives, these chemicals are winding up in our food supply, too. "Phthalates could be contaminating food at a number of points in the processing and supply chain," explains study author Justin Colacino, MPH, a PhD student in the department of environmental health sciences at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. "Some phthalates are also used in pesticides, so fruit and vegetables could be contaminated through direct application. Animals could also be exposed to phthalates through consumption of contaminated water or feed."

THE DETAILS: Researchers at the University of Michigan analyzed data collected from a national health and nutrition survey and compared diet with the amount of phthalate breakdown material—that is, by-products indicating the chemical's presence in the body—found in urine samples. They found that the people who ate more poultry had higher di-(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate, known as DEHP; higher veggie consumption, particularly potatoes and tomatoes, was associated with higher levels of the breakdown of diethyl phthalate (DEP), a lower molecular-weight phthalate commonly used in perfumes and scented personal-care products. The type found in poultry is most commonly used as a plasticizer to soften PVC plastic into vinyl.


Published on: April 20, 2010

More from our Authors

The 12-day power plan to flush toxins, balance hormones, and reset your body's most essential organ.

This is a very interesting

This is a very interesting article as well as enlighting especially for a person who sells shampoo.

Jimmy of Sls Free Shampoo

Are You Weight Loss-Resistant?
You're doing everything "right," but you still can't lose weight? Sign up for our newsletter and get JJ Virgin's 7 strategies to break through your weight loss-resistance as our thanks! Click here to learn more.

Free Newsletter
Sign up for the FREE daily newsletter and get useful tips to keep yourself, your family, and the planet healthy and thriving.

  The Daily Fix
The food, health and environment news you need to help you live a healthy life on a healthy planet.

  Maria's Farm Country Kitchen Newsletter
Get cooking tips, learn about healthy living and even raising chickens.

Your Privacy Policy