Within the past twenty years, studies have been showing that girls and boys are beginning puberty earlier in life than at any other time in history. Not coincidentally, the world has been inundated with a slew of toxic chemicals in products that we use everyday and practically everywhere.
A recent study is raising the alarm over this issue, pointing out that some of these common chemicals may be disrupting a child’s development even while they are still in the womb before they are born.
“We know that some of the things we put on our bodies are getting into our bodies, either because they pass through the skin or we breathe them in or we inadvertently ingest them. We need to know how these chemicals are affecting our health.” ~Kim Harley, lead author of the study and associate adjunct professor in the School of Public Health at Berkeley
Recently published in the journal Human Reproduction, a new report sheds light on this complex issue. Using data collected as part of the Centre for the Health Assessment of Mothers and Children of Salinas (CHAMACOS), which followed 338 children from birth into adolescence. The findings suggest that early environmental exposures may indeed impact childhood physical and mental development.
The study focused primarily on the presence of phthalates, parabens and phenols:
“The chemicals in question — phthalates, parabens and phenols — are known as endocrine disrupters, which may mimic hormones and lead children to mature well before their natural time. As the study noted, exposure to these chemicals is widespread, which is why it’s crucial parents be made aware of the findings.”
Indeed, the chemicals are widespread:
“Phthalates are used as fixing agents in scented products like deodorants and perfumes, and to prevent cracking in nail polish. They are also common in plastic packaging.
Parabens are a family of compounds that are widely used as preservatives. Meanwhile, phenols, notably triclosan and benzophenone, are used to enhance the durability of some products and as antimicrobial agents.” [Source]
Read more: Warning: Chemicals Common In Toothpaste And Personal Care Items Are Causing Early Puberty