Dangerous chemicals lurk behind commonplace items that many of us use and consume every single day. Without your knowledge, they could be wreaking havoc with your system.
Here are some common everyday items you should be informed and wary of:
Sanitary Pads and Tampons
Sanitary pads and tampons contain synthetic estrogens known as “xenoestrogens”. These estrogens have been linked to infertility as well as endometriosis and immunity problems. Try looking for sanitary products that are unbleached and uncoated. Or, like in my mother’s and grandmother’s time, make your own “sanitary pads” made of unbleached cheesecloth and wash them yourself.
Dental fillings with mercury are definitely restricted right now especially when a lot of dentists are properly informed of their toxic capabilities. However, even dental fillings without mercury can still be dangerous to your health due to the BPA found in many composite fillings (BPA is a gender-bending chemical linked to autism, early puberty, premature birth, type 2 diabetes, and ADHD).
A 2012 study published in the journal Pediatrics found out that children who have fillings made with BPA exhibit more behavioral problems than their peers. Ask your dentist for BPA-free composite fillings or ask for porcelain and gold (for fillings that won’t be seen) instead.
Tap water and produce
Unfortunately, if you’re living in the cities or even in big cities in rural areas, you may have no recourse but use tap water that is highly tainted with “glyphosate”, another xenoestrogen (hormone). Glyphosate has been linked to breast cancer, obesity, and several other kinds of cancer, according to studies. Glyphosate is almost always present in not only our tap water but also in the produce we buy and eat every day (glyphosate is the active ingredient in the herbicide Roundup which is largely used in many of the farms here in the Philippines; it gets sprayed onto the vegetables and fruits we buy commercially).
Consider investing in a “reverse osmosis filtration system” for your water supply to remove dangerous chemicals from your water. Or, like what a friend of mine who lives in the mountains did, he linked his water pipes to a natural spring water in the mountains and gets his drinking water straight and unchlorinated from it.
Also opt for organic produce as much as possible to limit your exposure. But what if you’ve been eating produce with glyphosate for years?
It is not too late to change habits. There are herbs and plants that can be eaten to detoxify your system, such as flax seeds to ease hormonal imbalance, cruciferous vegetables like broccoli to detoxify your liver from xenoestrogens, and coriander (cilantro). Ingest a probiotic to balance your gut microflora and remove toxins from your body.
Scented candles and perfumes
Many of the commercially bought scented candles and perfumes we use every day contain “phthalates”, a chemical that possesses certain negative side effects. They can be found in deodorants, shampoos, body wash, and commercial perfumes. They have been linked to early menopause, birth defects in boys, poor egg quality, and also to breast cancer and type 2 diabetes. Consider throwing out the scented candles and perfumes and use high-quality essential oils in a diffuser instead.
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) have discovered that 93% of Americans have detectable amounts of BPA in their bodies, largely attributed to the use of plastic water bottles and anything plastic for food. This chemical can also be found in the linings of canned food. Known as hormone disruptors, BPA has been credited to the drop in male sperm counts in recent years and linked to breast cancer and weight gain. They build up in your body over time as well and create havoc in your internal systems.
Avoid the use of plastic water bottles, especially when you leave these bottles under the hot sun. Instead, switch to stainless steel ones or glass or ceramic as food storage.