endocrine disruptors in infertility

21July, 2023

Endocrine disruptors in infertility

Endocrine disrupting compounds (EDC) are the exogenous synthetic chemicals or a mixture of chemicals that interfere with any aspect of hormone action.

They can be inhaled, ingested, absorbed through skin. They are capable of transplacental transfer and can secrete through breast milk. They are present in plastics, pesticides, heavy metals, additives, and contaminants in food. They can alter reproductive functions in men and women.

They are also implicated in breast cancer, alteration in growth pattern, decreasing age at puberty, abnormal semen parameters, immune abnormalities, preterm labor, and neurodevelopmental delay in children etc.

The EDCs interfere with the body’s normal reproductive functioning and can cause:

  1. Variation in hormone levels
  2. Decreased sperm and egg quality
  3. Damage to the sperm DNA
  4. Longer menstrual cycles and delay in pregnancy
  5. Increased risk of miscarriage
  6. Earlier menopause.

Avoiding the EDC

Being aware of such a phenomenon is the first step. Mindfulness and judicious use of products that may contain EDCs is important. Some rules to follow:

  • Washing fruit and vegetables to remove pesticides, fungicides, herbicides, and other chemicals that may have been sprayed on them.
  • Consuming lesser processed, canned, pre-packaged foods, avoid plastic wrappings, the plastic linings inside cans or cling wrap.
  • Reduce the number of oily fish (salmon, tuna, sardines) and fatty meats as pesticides, heavy metals and fat-soluble chemicals can accumulate in these animals.
  • Avoid soft plastic bottles, Resort to glass or steel.
  • Microwave foods in a china or glass bowl and not in plastic vessel.
  • Avoid air fresheners, strong chemicals, strongly perfumed products, plastic smells, and fumes.
  • Use non-toxic green fertilizers instead of pesticides and herbicides.
  • If possible, replace detergents, hand sanitisers, cleaning products, and carpet cleaners or strong chemicals like glues, paints, and varnishes which contain all types of chemicals with green products.
  • Read the labels on cosmetics, shampoos, conditioners, hair colourings and body washes and choose products that do not have parabens.
  • Avoid using heavily perfumed products where possible as they also contain chemicals.

For more info, Visit : www.medlineacademics.com

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