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Hormone Disruptors and Obesogens

More research will deepen our understanding of the hormone disruptors, obesogens, pesticides, and other chemicals we're all exposed to in our daily lives, and how they influence chronic health problems, fertility, and child development.

Cutting-edge research is starting to ID certain chemicals as obesogens, meaning they can impact development during critical windows of prenatal and early life in such a way that people are set up for obesity and obesity-related diseases like diabetes and some cancers much later in life.
The good news is that this flood of new research is going mainstream, and consumers now have more choices in plastic-free alternatives and safer personal-care products.

These ubiquitous chemicals aren't just affecting people, but are altering the development of wildlife and plants, too. Researchers at the University of California–Berkeley, last year found that a common weed-killing chemical, atrazine, actually turns male frogs into females. A study published last year in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives also found that some plants readily take up harmful chemicals found in shampoo and soaps.

As more people learn about the links between everyday toxic chemicals and health, safer alternatives will become even more readily available. For instance, knowing that most canned food contains harmful BPA, consumers can opt to buy fresh or frozen food instead. As public interest gains steam, Congress will face an increased pressure to update the inadequate Toxic Substances Control Act from the '70s that has not protected the public. Meanwhile, the EPA is facing increased pressure from public health and environmental groups to ban the use of harmful substances, such as the antibacterial chemical triclosan, which has been linked to a rise in hard-to-kill superbug germs, allergies, and thyroid problems. While government agencies look at regulating these problems, it's up to consumers to continue to demand safer products, and the better alternatives will wind up on more store shelves.

Learn more from the Rodale.com news archive:

4 Ways to Raise a Healthy Boy

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7 Food Rules to Help Protect Your Daughter From Early Puberty

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3 Chemicals That Disrupt Your Testosterone

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Is Your Wine Spiked With Hormone Disruptors?

What you can do:


3 Everyday Chemical Exposures Pregnant Women Should Avoid

What you can do:


Your 10-Step Chemical Detox Plan

What you can do:


1,300+ Chemicals Are Messing With Your Hormones

What you can do:


9 Thyroid Damagers Hiding Out in Your Home

What you can do:


Fracking: The New Hormone Disruptor

What you can do:


7 Freaky Reasons to Ditch Plastic

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