Dietary choices may directly or indirectly affect endocrine function:
• Foods may overtly contain hormones – both natural (e.g. dairy) and synthetic (e.g. beef in the US).
• Many foods have endocrine effects e.g. phytoestrogens.
• Many chemical additives and residues have endocrine disrupting properties, either mimicking hormones, affecting hormone receptor function, and/or affecting hormone metabolism.
• Intake of food allergens and sensitivities increases physiological stress e.g. cortisol.
What are endocrine disrupting chemicals?
• Ubiquitous in modern life!
Plastics, medications, take-out food packaging, beauty products…
• Oxybenzone e.g. sunscreens.
• Pesticides/Insecticides/Fungicidese e.g. glyphosate, household/property use.
• Perchlorate e.g. industrial runoff into drinking water, fireworks.
• Parabens e.g. preservative used in many personal hygiene products, cosmetics.
• Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCB) e.g. broad industrial use, lubricants, plasticizers.
• Dioxins e.g. herbicide production byproduct, paper bleaching, such as emitted from trash burning.
• Bisphenol A (BPA) e.g. polycarbonate plastics and epoxy resins, such as in the lining of metal food cans, cash register receipts, and other food storage containers. Many “BPA-free” items now use BPS which is also an EDC.
• Perfluoroalkyl and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) e.g. non-stick pan, paper, dental floss.
• Phthalates e.g. plastics additive, “fragrance”, food packaging, nail polish and other cosmetics, toys, medical devices.
• Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDE) e.g. flame retardants, such as furniture foam and carpets.
• Triclosan e.g. anti-microbial agent used in personal care products, such as toothpaste, liquid soaps.
• Toxin avoidance: an important aspect of the “Minimize” component of the optimal health model. Begin with (1) foods/beverages (local, organic, fresh/ripe/frozen, don’t microwave in plastics, avoid canned foods) and (2) personal hygiene products.
Minimizing exposure to these chemicals will contribute to your optimal health!
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If you have any questions about how you could benefit from Functional Medicine applied to health coaching, please schedule an initial consultation with me. During this session we will discuss your health and lifestyle to determine how I can best support you in achieving your goals.