A woman is barraged by perfume and other toxins float in the air around her

Hijacked Hormones

Are your hormones getting hijacked by the products in your home? According to the Environmental Working Group (EWG), there are 12 hormone-altering chemicals that should be avoided. Let’s take a look and see how we can best avoid them.

First, a note on hormones. You may be most familiar with testosterone (male hormone), estrogen (female hormone), melatonin (sleep hormone), cortisol (stress hormone), or ghrelin (hunger hormone), but the reality is, we have many hormones in our body.

Each serves a unique purpose that can help to regulate:

  • Digestion
  • Elimination
  • Metabolism
  • Mood
  • Stress
  • Reproduction

...and more!

When hormones get disrupted, there’s a major ripple effect in the body that can ultimately compromise health in the body. That’s why my ears perked up when I saw the ewg (who is more widely known for its food list, “The Dirty Dozen” and “The Clean Fifteen”) posted a new kind of Dirty Dozen – “List of Endocrine Disruptors: 12 Hormone-Altering Chemicals and How to Avoid Them”.

According to the site, “there is no end to the tricks that endocrine disruptors can play on our bodies.” Essentially, they jack up our hormones. Decreasing the production of some, increasing the production of others, and even telling cells to die prematurely.

Why is this so important in the context of endometriosis? Because the symptoms and severity of endometriosis are often heightened during times when there is significant hormonal changes in the body – puberty, pre-menstrual period, etc. – so, in my opinion, I don’t want to give my hormones any added reason to change or become out of balance.

The Dirty Dozen List includes:

  1. BPA
  2. Dioxin
  3. Atrazine
  4. Phthalates
  5. Perchlorate
  6. Fire retardants
  7. Lead
  8. Arsenic
  9. Mercury
  10. Perfluorinated chemicals
  11. Organophosphate pesticides
  12. Glycol Ethers

I encourage you to check-out the list yourself to see the details, but here’s what caught my attention most.

Dirty receipts

I knew it was in the lining of canned foods (hence my video on never buying a dented can). Truthfully, I do my best to buy BPA-free cans or just avoid cans all together. But I was shocked to learn that the receipts we get at check-out are often printed on thermal paper which is often coated with BPA. Wow! Next time they offer to email my receipt, my answer will be a definite yes.

Fragrance in disguise

I hear a lot about phthalates in the beauty industry. These cell-killers are in many of our personal care products under the disguise of “fragrance.” Thankfully, ewg is helping to lift the veil and keep us healthier for it. Go fragrance-free and add your own essential oils to enjoy a clean fragrance.

A win for reverse osmosis water

Perchlorate is a component of rocket fuel that can be found in drinking water. Sounds yummy, huh? Well, I’m excited to see that they gave a plug for reverse osmosis water, which filters it out. It also liters out arsenic – another “dirty dozen”.

Sushi: This one is tough

“Caution: That sushi you’re eating could be hazardous to your health.” Ouch! As a sushi lover, this one hurts. I do agree with their point however that mercury is a toxic metal we need to ensure we’re keeping at bay. I, personally, have had my mercury levels tested and have even gone as far as to remove amalgam fillings in my teeth, but swear off sushi, I cannot do. Thankfully, my mercury levels are low and I believe that as long as I have a rotation of healthy, sustainable seafood options in my diet, I’ll be okay for an occasional sushi night out.

What are your thoughts? Share in the comments below!

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