There’s so much to learn when it comes navigating our way through ‘the change’. Understanding the impact of hormones is very important for managing the hormonal roller coaster. Too much estrogen can cause breast cancer, low libido, breast swelling, belly fat and fatigue. Too little estrogen can cause osteoporosis, weight gain, depression, night sweats, hot flushes, breast tenderness, vaginal dryness and urinary tract infections.
Our hormones react to the food we eat, stress and the toxins we are exposed to through the environments we live and work in. During peri-menopause and menopause, we fluctuate every day, between having too much and too little of one or more hormone. Today I would like to share information on xeno-estrogens, what they are and how to avoid them.
Xeno-estrogens mimic the functions of our natural estrogens and are everywhere, reeking havoc on our body. They attach themselves to our cell’s receptors and take over the function of natural oestrogen’s. Xeno-estrogens, on entering the skin go directly to tissue without passing through the liver for detoxification. They are 100% absorbed by the body and can be 10 times more potent than those consumed orally.
By familiarising ourselves with the sources of xeno-estrogens, we can reduce the negative impact they have on our health and well-being.
Soft plastics used as packaging materials are often treated with chemical compounds called phthalates. Plastic wrapped foods, heated in the microwave, contain some of the highest xeno-estrogens levels.
What to do – Stop heating your food and water in the microwave with plastic wrappers and containers. Avoid Styrofoam cups and plastic water bottles. Store food in glass containers whenever possible.
2. Disposable products
Tampons and sanitary pads contain chlorine, fragrance, wax, surfactants, rayon, etc. It has been reported that dioxins, a class of chemical contaminants that may increase the risk of cancer, reproductive and developmental problems, heart disease and diabetes have been found in conventional tampons.
What to do – Use organic cotton or other natural materials or purchase a moon cup (menstrual cup).
3. Tumbler dryer sheets
Tumbler dryer sheets are loaded with xeno-estrogens to make your clothes feel soft and fresh. These residual xeno-estrogens can permeate your skin and go directly into your cells.
What to do – Use a natural liquid fabric softener or ½ cup of baking soda in the rinse cycle instead.
HRT is made from Horse Urine! It contains synthetic hormones that can interrupt our natural hormone balance and cause Estrogen Dominance. For some (not all) women HRT can make them feel worse, not better.
What to do – Increase your intake of natural hormone balancing vegetables, plants and seeds (phytoestrogens). Try natural alternatives to synthetic HRT – Red Clover, Maca Powder, Black Cohosh, Sage etc. Experiment with Essential Oils. Please note always check the ingredients and research the company and reviews of any products before you purchase.
5. Meat and Dairy
Animal products are contaminated with bovine growth hormones and expose us to a significant amount of xeno-estrogens.
What to do – Follow a plant-based diet – join a Facebook group dedicated to supporting women on how to eliminate menopause symptoms with simple plant-based recipes.
Parabens or phenoxyethanol are chemical compounds widely used by cosmetic and pharmaceutical industries as preservatives. These chemicals are found in shampoo, lotions, soap, toothpaste, cosmetics and other personal care products.
What to do – Replace with natural shampoo bars and soaps etc. There’s a number of natural alternatives to choose from on Amazon.
7. Insecticide or pesticides
Due to the widespread use of agricultural chemicals in food production, we are exposed to low levels of pesticide through the food we eat and the tap water we drink.
What to do – Rinse fruit and vegtables thoroughly with vinegar and drink filtered water.
8. Food additives
According to a study published in the journal, Chemical Research in Toxicology, 31 substances added to food for the purpose of preservation, colouring, texture and flavour have potential estrogenic effects.
Tinned foods are lined with a plastic coating that contains bisphenol-A (BPA).
What to do – Eat real food and eliminate or at least reduce your consumption of processed food as much as possible.
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