Xenoestrogens are endocrine disruptors, chemicals that alter the normal function of hormones. There are 70,000 registered chemicals that are specifically categorized as xenoestrogens, meaning they have an estrogenic effect. These compounds mimic hormones, which interfere with the work of natural hormones. Xenoestrogens are specifically harmful to reproductive organs in women and men, the immune system and the neurological system. They often completely disrupt hormone balance and cause estrogen dominance. Some effects of this are: obesity, infertility, breast, testicular and prostate cancer, endometriosis, miscarriages, diabetes and early onset puberty.
Common sources of xenoestrogens are food, plastic, skin care products, building supplies, pesticides, and contraceptives. Here are a few ways to reduce your exposure the xenoestrogens:
- Avoid pesticides by choosing organic, locally grown, and in season foods.
- Peel non-organic fruits and vegetables.
- Buy hormone free meats and dairy products.
- Avoid plastics in the following everyday kitchen products:
- Water bottles
- Canned foods (most are lined with plastic)
- Teflon and other non-stick cookware
- Plastic wrap to cover food and by removing plastic covered food as soon as you get home from the store
- Choose household products carefully. Check out the Environmental Working Group’s website for green cleaning products.
- Choose chlorine free alternatives for the following products:
- Paper towels
- Tampons and menstrual pads
- Toilet paper
- Coffee filters
If you would like more information or an individualized plan for you, make an appointment with any of the Highlands Health and Wellness providers. You can also check out more information about safe products in these categories and more at EWG.org.