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There are a lot of manmade chemicals that mimic estrogen. Take a look at the xenoestrogens list of potential sources and tips on how to avoid them.
“Xenoestrogens” may sound like the name of a horror movie, but they’re not the stuff of scary fiction. In fact, they are real and they’re downright monstrous. These manmade chemicals can cause a long laundry list of serious health problems.
Even though you may not have heard of the term, there’s a good chance you’re surrounded by xenoestrogens. Don’t be too scared, though. Avoiding potential sources on the xenoestrogens list is key.
Xenoestrogens may be found in every nook and cranny in your home. From your cupboard to your kitchen, in your closets, in your bedroom and lurking in your bathroom like a silent killer.… These nasty chemicals are waiting to unleash an evil torrent of physiological damage within your body.
So what are these horrific xenoestrogens?
They are man-made substances—toxic chemicals—with estrogen-like effects.
If that doesn’t sound nefarious enough for you, consider this: xenoestrogens may be, at least, in part, to blame for a wide variety of cancers, including breast and ovarian cancer.
These evil substances have led to a health phenomenon called “estrogen dominance.”
Most people know estrogen as the female reproductive sex hormone. What fewer people realize about this natural hormone is it plays a critical role in growing healthy bones, clotting blood in case you get a nasty cut, and also reproduction in not only women but men as well.
If estrogen is so important for both women’s and men’s health, why is estrogen dominance a bad thing?
Xenoestrogens, or call them artificial estrogens if you wish, are not biodegradable. They can’t get easily burned off like a donut after jogging on a treadmill for an hour. Nope, they are stored in our fat cells and can throw off normal hormonal function.
This is bad news because the accumulation of xenoestrogens has been linked to the following: breast, prostate and testicular cancer, obesity, infertility, endometriosis, early onset puberty, miscarriages, reduced sperm counts, and diabetes.
Xenoestrogens and phytoestrogens
Some people get confused between xenoestrogens and phytoestrogens. While both are capable of contributing to estrogen dominance, phytoestrogens are natural. They come from the plant world. One example of a phytoestrogen is unfermented soy products, such as soybeans.
Soybeans are great to eat if you are menopausal, because during this stage in life, when a woman is no longer experiencing menstrual cycles, estrogen levels decline. Eating foods that have natural phytoestrogens are one way to bring the body’s hormones back to balance.
But for men and premenopausal women, eating foods rich in phytoestrogens can lead to estrogen dominance.
Estrogen dominance, in addition to leading to the above conditions, can also manifest as uterine fibroid tumors, hair loss, weight gain, or depression.
In addition to being linked to lower sperm counts and testicular cancer, xenoestrogens and phytoestrogens may also make men susceptible to developing an embarrassing condition known disparagingly in the vernacular as “man boobs.”
Man boobs are the result of abnormal mammary tissue growth. Xenoestrogens and phytoestrogens may also be implicated in lowering libido and impotency, as well as atherosclerosis.
By now, you should be terrified of xenoestrogens. You should be squirming in your seat like you’re wearing 3D glasses at the IMAX theater and the xenoestrogens are leaping from the screen, threatening to snatch your life!
So … where are these hidden monsters found? Is there a xenoestrogens list of the most common sources? The following is merely a partial list, but it includes items that nearly everyone has daily exposure to….
Xenoestrogens are byproducts of the plastic and pesticide industries. Besides being a component of plastic, they are also found in conventional makeup/cosmetic products, household cleaners, laundry detergents, and some birth control medications. They are also found in sunscreens, chlorine and processed food.
You may have heard of some of these xenoestrogens: BPA, parabens, BPA, phthalates, PCBs, the artificial food coloring known as FD&C Red No. 3, the food preservatives known as BHA and BHT and more.
How to reduce your exposure to xenoestrogens
The easiest way to not let your body reach a state of estrogen dominance is to eliminate as much as possible toxic products from the home. You don’t have to throw away every single item in your house that’s made from plastic, but you certainly don’t have to eat or drink from them.
For example, never drink water out of plastic bottles. Use glass or reusable steel bottles instead. Don’t microwave your food in plastic containers. Spend the extra money on organic sunscreens and other cosmetics and makeup. Buy eco-friendly laundry detergents and household cleaners.
(Want to save money and cut down on xenoestrogen exposure? Clean your home with essential oils.) Don’t eat any processed food. Try to restrict your intake of grain-fed meat and non-organic dairy. Antibiotics and hormones found in factory-farmed dairy and meat may contain xenoestrogenic properties.
Xenoestrogens effect on the body
One of the most complex systems in the human body is the endocrine system. The endocrine system controls the release of hormones, which are chemical messengers that travel throughout the body. Hormones choreograph processes such as growth, metabolism, and fertility.
Xenoestrogens, by definition are endocrine disruptors. They are a category of chemicals that alter the normal function of the hormone, estrogen.
Our endocrine system releases hormones that signal different tissues telling them what to do. Artificial estrogens are chemicals from the outside environment that get into our bodies. They mimic our natural estrogen.
We only need, relatively speaking to say, our 10 pints of blood, a tiny amount of hormones. It doesn’t take much to interfere with our body’s estrogen level. Xenoestrogens and phytoestrogens can either block or bind to hormone receptors.
This is why the uterus and breasts are so vulnerable. They are particularly hormonally sensitive organs. Xenoestrogens can also wreak havoc with the immune and neurological systems.
Man-made estrogen substances are diabolically scary, because they can disrupt the synthesis, metabolism and functions of endogenous female hormones, according to this review of xenoestrogens.
Research on Xenoestrogens
A Polish study cautions that xenoestrogens are present as contaminants virtually everywhere: in water, soil, food and air … exposure to them occurs through household products and through occupational exposure. The researchers concluded exposure to xenoestrogens may cause problems with fertility.
Furthermore, they also possess known factors that play a role in estrogen-dependent cancer development.
“Exposure to xenoestrogens is particularly dangerous during ‘critical periods’ of life, such as intrauterine, and puberty,” concluded the researchers.
A study published in Environmental Health suggests there is strong evidence to confirm xenoestrogens’ impact on carcinogenesis. And according to a research article printed in Environmental Health Perspectives, male reproductive health has deteriorated in many countries during the last few decades. In the 1990s, declining semen quality has been reported from Belgium, Denmark, France, and Great Britain.
Exposure of the male fetus to supranormal levels of estrogens, such as diethlylstilbestrol, can result in reproductive defects, the researchers concluded.
“The growing number of reports demonstrating that common environmental contaminants and natural factors possess estrogenic activity presents the working hypothesis that the adverse trends in male reproductive health may be, at least in part, associated with exposure to estrogenic … environmental chemicals during fetal and childhood development.”
Now that’s scary!
Progesterone cream fertility
The hormone, progesterone, plays a key role during pregnancy. It is produced in the ovaries. One of its roles is to maintain the lining of the uterus. Progesterone makes it possible for a fertilized egg to attach and survive.
Here’s where progesterone is related to xenoestrogens: remember the term, ‘estrogen dominance’ and how xenoestrogens can cause this hormonal imbalance? Well, women need an adequate level of progesterone to offset estrogen. Think of the two hormones as functioning optimally as if on a level see-saw.
As more women are becoming estrogen dominant, it’s easy to then see why progesterone deficiency has become more common. Progesterone deficiency is not something you catch out of the blue, like a cold. Xenoestrogens, and possibly to a lesser extent, phytoestrogens are major culprits in the rise of progesterone deficiency.
In light of this recent hormonal horror show that’s all too real for too many women, many women who are trying to get pregnant are relying on progesterone cream to boost their chances of fertility. (To learn more about progesterone cream, click here.)
Foods that fight xenoestrogens
To reduce your chances of being progesterone deficient or estrogen dominant, eat lots of organic food. Eat meats and eggs that are pasture raised, not factory farmed.
Eating lots of fiber is crucial to help detoxify the body of the damaging chemicals found on the xenoestrogens list. So eat plenty of fiber rich whole foods.
Basically, any food that you already know as healthy such as organic green, leafy veggies, flax seeds, sea vegetables, etc., are foods you should eat lots of to avoid the scary world of xenoestrogens.