Scientists and researchers have discovered that plastic bottles contain hormone-disrupting chemicals which make them dangerous to human health.
These chemicals, which are called endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs), interfere with the body’s hormonal system, affecting development and making the body vulnerable to diseases like cancer, diabetes, and autism.
A study, which was carried out by NYU Langone and published in Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology, a medical journal, reports that these chemicals can be found in food containers — plastic or metal, detergents, flame retardants, toys, and cosmetics.
The most common EDC-related illnesses are neurological; some of which are attention-ADHD, autism, and loss of IQ.
Obesity, diabetes, some cancers, male infertility and endometriosis, the abnormal growth of tissue outside the uterus, are also some of the disease conditions that can occur as a result of exposure to these chemicals.
“Our research adds to the growing evidence on the tremendous economic as well as human health costs of endocrine-disrupting chemicals”, said Leonardo Trasande, an associate professor at NYU Langone in New York and lead investigator of the research.
“This has the potential to develop into a much larger health and economic issue if no policy action is taken.”
The chemical affects the body’s endocrine tissues, which produce essential hormones that helps in regulating energy levels, reproduction, growth, development, as well as our response to stress and injury.
The chemicals mimic naturally-occurring hormones and lock on to receptors in the body thereby blocking the body’s own hormones from binding with them.
Dailymail reports that researchers reviewed blood and urine samples from the UK National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, which has gathered data since 2009 from 5,000 volunteers.
Computer models were then used to estimate how much each of 15 diseases or conditions was attributable to chemical exposure.
‘Each IQ point lost corresponds to approximately two per cent in lost productivity,’ Trasande explained.
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