Endocrine disruptors are chemicals we encounter every day in many common household items and foods. Endocrine disruptors can mimic hormones and bind hormone receptors, which can create a weaker or stronger response than the original or alter the response completely. Endocrine disruptors can alter the synthesis (hormone creation), transport, binding, and breakdown of hormones. The outcome can affect things such as testicular function, sensory impairment, weight gain, an altered onset of puberty, and disrupted immune function, bone health, cardiac function, and mental status.
Endocrine disruptors are found in food, personal care products, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, pesticides, plastic, water, and soil. Start reading to discover ways to eliminate them from your life.
Wash Your Hands Free Of Endocrine Disruptors
The first step to avoiding the endocrine disrupting chemicals is to prevent them from maintaining excellent hand hygiene. Many dish soaps and hand soaps are fragranced or have antibacterial properties containing endocrine disruptors, so it is important to purchase or make natural soaps. Natural soaps can be quite expensive. However, there is a recipe for a DIY: Make Your Own Natural All-Purpose Soap.
Maintaining excellent hand hygiene means washing hands properly. Use warm water and lather soap for twenty seconds or long enough to sing happy birthday twice before rinsing them off. Now that you know how to make all-natural soap and wash away endocrine disrupting chemicals, continue reading to discover other ways to prevent them.
Dust And Vacuum To Eliminate Endocrine Disruptors
Many of the common chemicals used for cleaning the house contain endocrine disruptors. One thing individuals can do to prevent this is to switch to all-natural alternatives or to reduce the use of chemicals when cleaning. As the chemicals settle, they mix in the dust that spreads throughout the house. The way to eliminate, or at least decrease, the amount of chemicals and dust is by dusting with a damp cloth and vacuuming using a vacuum with a HEPA filter. Vacuums without a HEPA filter don't trap all of the dust particles but blow many of them around the house.
Now that you know dusting and vacuuming can reduce your exposure to endocrine disruptors, continue reading to learn other ways of avoiding them.
Make The Switch To Fragrance-Free Or All-Natural
Many brands of perfumes, colognes, and cleaning products are fragranced to appease our sense of smell. But many of these fragrances also contain phthalates, a class of chemicals known to disrupt hormones. Fortunately, the fragrance these products contain does not make them more powerful or effective, and there are many fragrance-free or all-natural alternatives.
Many unpleasant fragrances may warrant the use of cleaning products containing endocrine disruptors. However, there are other ways of eliminating the bad smells such as opening windows, using fans, tossing litter and garbage outside, and using citrus peels in the garbage can to remove unwanted odors.
Reduce Your Use Of Cans And Plastics
For many people, plastics are used without much thought every single day. Plastic is used to wrap, package and contain food, bottled water, to carry purchases from stores, and to case most electronics and toys. BPA and PVC #3 plastics contain endocrine disrupting chemicals that can be harmful and many cans of packaged food are lined with BPA to keep the can from corroding. There has been extensive research conducted that prove exposure to these plastics can pose some risk, even in low quantities.
Eliminating use of all plastics is a difficult task. However, alternatives such as mason jars, glass, and stainless steel do not contain harmful chemicals. When thinking of plastic, think of reducing the use, reusing as many plastic bags as you can, and recycling what is left. Continue avoiding endocrine disruptors by learning more about foods that may contain them.
Research The Food You Eat
Foods packaged in cans and plastic are likely to have come into contact with endocrine disrupting chemicals. By avoiding these foods, or finding alternatives, we can reduce our exposure to some of these chemicals. However, endocrine disruptors are also found in many of the pesticides with links to hormone disruption. By switching to organic foods, individuals can eliminate these hormone-disrupting pesticides from their diet.
Other methods to reduce these chemicals include reducing the consumption of packaged foods and by soaking and thoroughly washing non-organic fruits and vegetables. Now that you know what foods to eat and which to avoid, learn more about why you should filter your water as well.
Filter The Chemicals From Your Water
On average, humans are recommended to consume eight cups of water per day. However, tap water can be riddled with chemicals, including endocrine disruptors. It has been found to have traces of lime, chlorine, chloramine, fluoride, pesticides, and even trace amounts of pharmaceutical drugs. By investing in an NSF-certified water filter, you can greatly decrease the level of many of the harmful chemicals in your water. The filters also kill bacteria and remove impurities. However, some can filter out many of the minerals beneficial to our health. It is recommended you conduct your research to discover which NSF-certified water filter will best suit your needs. Continue reading to find out why you should rely more on natural beauty.
Go Natural Or Go For Natural Cosmetics
Cosmetics have many of the BPA, perfluorinated chemicals (PFCs), triclosan, parabens, and phthalates classified as endocrine disruptors. These chemicals are found in shampoos, conditioners, lotions, nail polish, eye makeup, sunscreens, deodorant, toothpaste, shaving cream, and hairspray, as well as on their containers. The two alternatives to the cosmetics are to either stop using them entirely or to find natural alternatives. Unfortunately, most plastic containers will have BPA chemicals, so glass, wood or BPA-free plastics are the alternatives.
As for makeup, there are a few brands that are 100% natural and packaged in bamboo; it is best to stick with these to avoid endocrine disruptors. Many of these lines include lipsticks, lip gloss, blush, mascara, eyeliner, foundation, and concealer.