Here are some highlights of how endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs - found in pesticides, plastics, industrial chemicals, and fuels) can affect our overall health and reproductive health (including thyroid function):
- Prenatal exposure to certain chemicals has been documented to increase the risk of cancer in childhood;
- adult male exposure to pesticides is linked to altered semen quality, sterility, and prostate cancer;
- postnatal exposure to some pesticides can interfere with all developmental stages of reproductive function in adult females, including puberty, menstruation and ovulation, fertility and fecundity, and menopause.
It also discusses the environmental injustice that’s occurring because minorities and those living in poverty (including those in low-wage immigrant occupations) with poor neighborhood quality, substandard housing quality, increased psycho-social stress, and unsatisfactory nutritional status are at increased risk for exposure.
The publication has many insights and suggestions, but my favorite part is that the Committee Opinion includes at the end something very simple and basic for women who are TTC, pregnant, or breastfeeding:
- foods to eat (“fruit, vegetables, beans, legumes, and whole grains every day”)
- and foods to avoid (“fast food and other processed foods whenever possible”)!