Exposure to endocrine disruptors is like putting a drop of water into the gas tank of a car. One drop may not have a major impact, but drip by drip, the car breaks down. Endocrine disruptors do the same thing to the human body. Endocrine disruptors cause symptoms such as infertility, weight gain, cardiac disease, dementia, and more. Hormones control every function in the body; when they’re out of balance, so is everything else.
Top Endocrine Disruptors
The following endocrine disruptors are the main ones you should completely avoid.
1. Organophosphate Pesticides
These pesticides are sprayed on food to kill common pests. Pesticide residue on vegetables and fruits are one of the most common ways we consume these dangerous chemicals. Organophosphate pesticides have been shown to cause infertility in men, slow brain development in children, and have even been shown to affect thyroid function.   Always choose organic when purchasing food to avoid these pesticides.
17α-Ethynylestradiol is a synthetic form of estrogen and the only one that remains active when taken orally. Currently, this synthetic hormone can be found in all forms of oral birth control. Studies have shown that it promotes breast cancer complications and cell proliferation.  Even the US government has acknowledged its dangerous effects.
3. Fire Retardants (PBDEs)
PBDEs, or polybrominated diethyl ethers, disrupt thyroid function by blocking the uptake of iodine, eventually taking its place in the thyroid.  Because of this action, they also mimic and disrupt thyroid hormones. PBDEs have been linked to lower IQ and are proven to negatively affect neural and physical development in children and developing infants. 
Phthalates are added to plastics to aid durability and flexibility. Their negative health effects have been constantly reported in various studies all across the world. Phthalates can easily leach into water and bottled water is subject to contamination. Research has confirmed that phthalates inhibit sperm cell development.  They’re also linked to obesity, diabetes, and thyroid conditions. Always store foods and liquids in glass whenever possible.
BPA permeates our lives. Food cans, plastic bottles, cell phone protectors, and water pipes may all contain this stuff. The chemical even coats store receipts and can be absorbed through the skin on contact. Studies have found people who handle receipts have this chemical in their urine just a few hours later. According to government research, ninety-three percent of Americans have detectable levels of BPA in their bodies. BPA has been tied to obesity, breast cancer, early-onset puberty, cardiovascular disease, and reproductive problems. Choose BPA-free storage containers and, again, use glass whenever possible.
Found in rocket fuel, explosives, fireworks, and fertilizers, this common environmental chemical noticeably disrupts thyroid function. Similarly to PBDEs, perchlorate replaces iodine in the thyroid and leads to decreased thyroid activity. Symptoms of decreased thyroid activity include weight gain, poor energy, and depression. Water contains the highest concentrations of perchlorate. The best solution to prevent damage from this endocrine disruptor is to ensure you are getting enough iodine. A high-quality water filter may also help filter out perchlorate.
This element naturally occurs deep within the earth’s crust, but can also be released through mining and industrial activities and find its way to water sources.  Exposure to arsenic can result in insulin resistance, immune system suppression, slowed cognitive development, cardiovascular damage, and weight gain/loss.  The best way to protect against arsenic is to install a water filter that specifically removes arsenic.
8. Perfluorinated chemicals (PFCs)
It’s estimated that 99% of Americans have PFC accumulation in their bodies. PFCs are commonly used to make non-stick pans. During cooking, some of these chemicals escape into your food and accumulate in your body. PFCs disrupt hormone function and have been tied to infertility, ineffective sperm, heart disease, thyroid disease, high cholesterol, and low birth-weight in babies. One study confirmed PFCs, especially PFOA and PFHxS, negatively affect thyroid hormone levels.  Avoid non-stick cookware.
Mercury is toxic and dangerous to pregnant women and their babies. It’s will bind with a hormone essential to menstruation and ovulation. Mercury also attacks the pancreas to affect insulin production. Suffice to say — avoid mercury!
Reducing seafood consumption may be one of the best solutions to reduce mercury intake; unfortunately, fish is no longer the only concern. The new CFL light bulbs contain dangerous levels of mercury. In fact, if one of these light bulbs break, evacuation is recommended.
The US government recognizes dioxin as an endocrine disruptor. Dioxin, a byproduct of industrial processes, with heart disease, diabetes, reduced fertility, poor sperm activity and low sperm counts, embryo development interference, and spontaneous miscarriage. Meats and other food products which contain animal products provide the majority of exposure to Americans. It accumulates in fat and can remain for years.
What Can We Do?
While difficult, it is possible to take steps to avoid endocrine disruptors. If you eat meat or fish, choose organic, free-range, or wild sources. Buy fresh, organic produce as much as possible, and choose glass for food storage. Make sure you supplement with iodine to protect the thyroid. I also highly recommend regular cleansing to help remove toxin accumulation.
Watch an In-Depth Video on
How to Balance Your Hormones Naturally
Video Length: 90 minutes
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