05 February 2008

PMS and PMDD Causes - Part 4: Toxic Chemicals

Researchers state that there is no real known reason why PMS (or PMDD) occurs in some women and not in others. Let me tell you what I think why PMS (and PMDD) occurs (part 4):

4. Toxic chemicals
There are many chemicals produced today which have a very negative effect on women's hormones. Certain chemicals in plastics have an oestrogenic effect on women and especially affect areas such as the breasts, because these chemicals are stored in fat deposits. The chemical in questions are basically xenoestrogens - named this way because of their oestrogen-like activity. The main culprits are phthalates and Bisphenol A.

These two chemicals are used in the following:

  • adhesives
  • computers
  • electronics (such as the iPhone)
  • nail polish
  • paint pigments
  • plastic of all types - plastic drink bottles, baby teats, baby bottles, plastic take-away containers, plastic cookware for microwaves, plastic cling wrap
  • soft plastic fishing lures
The list of products that contain these chemicals is quite long and that means exposure to these chemicals on a daily basis can be really high for some women.

The other important thing to note is that these chemicals are implicated in breast cancer, due to their hormone-like oestrogenic activity and that they stored in fat deposits in the body. Another reason to keep away from these chemicals.

Many studies have shown that phthalates and Bisphenol A have a variety of detrimental health effects to the body, especially to women and young children. These detrimental effect of these chemicals is even more potent when they are heated.

Consider ways you can reduce your exposure to some of these products to reduce their effect on you and your PMS or PMDD may decrease in like.

Bottom line - stay away from plastics as much as possible and don't use any type of plastic to heat up food.

Update: A recent study by the University of Cincinnati have advised that when plastic (polycarbonate) bottles are heated up, they release more Bisphenol A into the liquid inside the bottles.

This means that if you leave bottles in cars on hot days and drink the liquid, you are drinking more of the Bisphenol A chemical - which has proven oestrogen-like activity in the body, but in a very detrimental way. It is definitely a chemical that women who get PMS or PMDD should stay away from (there are even implications that these toxic chemicals play a part in female hormone cancers, so women should be extra careful).

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