Guide to Hormone Disruptors / Endocrine Disruptors

This information is most relevant to mothers with children, women who are planning pregnancies or are pregnant, women dealing with fibroids, endometriosis or other hormonal disruptions, and men dealing with borderline low sperm quality and quantity.  This is because recognized effects of reproductive toxicants include menstrual irregularities, early or delayed puberty, infertility, early pregnancy loss, fetal death, impaired fetal growth, and birth defects.

Endocrine disruptors are chemicals that mimic naturally occurring hormones in our bodies.  Many of us know about harmful plastics and BPA.  However, there are many other chemicals and sources of toxicants.  Below is a quick guide to classes and sources of endocrine disruptors and where we can strategize to eliminate them and choose healthier alternatives.  While there are many chemicals (over 80,000), I have restricted the list to those that specifically disrupt the endocrine (hormone) system, although many more carcinogenic (cancer causing) chemicals exist.

While many of us are becoming more eco-conscious, my goal is always to up the ante, and every year, pick a few changes that I can make.   Also, I try to be mindful that industries are also changing due to public pressure, so stay informed.  Lastly, let’s not give in to fear, just make the changes that work for you and talk to us if you need guidance.

World Health Organization
CCME (Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment)
Vital Link Vol 20 issue 1 spring 2013 (environmental working group)