Environmental Toxins and Fertility

A new study has been released, further increasing the mounting data that toxins in our environment are harming our fertility.  It appears that these chemicals, called perfluorinated chemicals are contained in many common household and other products.  These products accumulate in the body, have a long half-life, and there is a connection between high levels of these in women and those women having difficulty getting pregnant.

It is going to be a long-haul to get a definitive, well-done scientific study done on this subject, as there as so many variables to control when it comes to fertility.  But, the connection does seem to be there and it makes sense.   These chemicals are found in food packaging, dental floss, shampoos, and non-stick substances (cookware and ScotchGard.)   An example of this would be the grease-proof wrappers for hamburgers at fast-food restaurants.   When these get hot (fresh hamburger), these chemicals are released into the food and then ingested.  The big problem is that these chemicals have a long half-life, as long as eight years.

Some common sources of these chemicals  are:

  • PFCs are used to make textiles and leather resistant to water, dirt, and oil.
  • Grease-resistant food packaging and paper products, such as microwave popcorn bags and pizza boxes, contain PFCs.
  • Carpet – PFOS was used until 2002 in the manufacture of 3M’s Scotchgard treatment, used on carpet, furniture, and clothing.
  • PFOA is used to make DuPont’s Teflon product, famous for its use in non-stick cookware.  If Teflon-coated pans are overheated, PFOA is released.
  • PFCs are in cleaning and personal-care products like shampoo, dental floss, and denture cleaners.

You can see that these compounds are contained in many, many products.  I will try to include more on this important subject as I learn more.

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