How Everyday Products Can Impact Your Hormones
Many household products contain ingredients that have been shown to alter hormonal systems. These ingredients are called “endocrine disruptors”. Now, I have no intention to make you feel paranoid with this article. I would just like to provide some information for you to mull over. Maybe it’ll help you make some changes with the products you stock your home with. Or maybe you’ll decide that nothing stated here makes you worried enough to change things up. The point is that you’re informed for your own health journey!
OVERVIEW: SOME IMPORTANT LISTS
If you’re wondering what I mean by “household products” here are some examples:
– plastics (containers, packaging, wrappings etc.)
– antiperspirants, fragrances, cosmetics
– moisturizers and hair dyes
– air fresheners, detergents and cleaning products
And it’s more than just BPA, parabens and aluminum I’m talking about. There are other ingredients that have been shown to impact hormone systems. Ingredients like:
– preservatives and plasticizers
– anti-aging ingredients
– ingredients to give the product a certain texture
– fragrances added to products
The hormones that have been affected in studies are estrogen, progesterone, androgens (like testosterone) and thyroid hormones. The catch is that a lot of this research is in animals so it must be taken with a grain of salt. Scientists are still debating over the role these products play in human health. There are hypotheses about these products playing a role in:
– Breast and other types of cancer, benign breast cysts, fibroadenomas
– Diabetes, obesity and metabolic syndrome
Studies may find that a specific chemical does not cause a disease. However, we’re not exposed to just one chemical. We’re exposed to many. There is little information about the cumulative effect of all these chemicals.
WHAT TO DO
It can create a lot of anxiety to worry about everything in your environment. I believe it’s best to balance being cautious with being practical.
Pick and choose the products you want to replace with more natural alternatives. Many people opt for a good quality plant oil to moisturize with rather than a synthetic cream. There are many DIY recipes online for household cleaners. Swapping plastic containers for glass is another popular option. Also, there’s the option of using natural deodorants or avoiding fragrances.
I tend to use simple kitchen ingredients for a lot of things. If you’re going to buy pre-made natural products at the store be sure to read the ingredients. Don’t pay a high price for something that seems all-natural but is not. Don’t assume that just because a store looks “naturey” it means the products are all-natural.
Even herbs and nutrients can play a role in hormonal health. If you need some guidance on hormonal health book an appointment or free 15-minute consultation.
Dr. Samantha Dass is currently a naturopathic doctor working at Holland Landing Health Centre in East Gwillimbury, Ontario, which services Holland Landing, Newmarket, Aurora, Keswick and Bradford areas. If you are interested in naturopathic services please contact Holland Landing Health Centre at 905-853-7900 or via e-mail at [email protected].
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