When we have any opportunities to discuss the value of lifestyle changes in this space, you'd better believe we take advantage of them. We do it for a reason… Many of the alterations we suggest -- for example, incorporating exercise or more whole foods -- aren't easy to make, and, often, it takes a long time doing them every day to start noticing a real difference in your health.
The huge upside of today's blog post: Cutting back on packaged, processed foods has a nearly immediate impact on your exposure to health-harming, endocrine-disrupting chemicals, like phthalates and Bisphenol A (BPA).
The gist of the study was elegantly simple. Scientists compared levels of BPA and five different phthalates used in consumer packaging in urine samples taken from five two-parent families (each with two children ranging in age from 3-11) for eight days. After eating as they liked for the first two days, patients were provided catered meals and snacks made from fresh organic foods stored in glass or stainless steel containers for three days, then returned to their normal diets for the final three days.
During the organic/fresh food phase of the study, average BPA levels among all patients dropped by more than 60 percent, and by as much as 75 percent among folks with the highest exposures. What's more, BPA levels among patients returned to typically elevated levels when folks returned to their daily dietary routines.
Of the phthalates monitored, levels of bis(2-exthylhexyl)phthalate (DEHP), another FDA-approved chemical for medical equipment and packaged foods that contain water, fell by half and as much as 90 percent during that same three-day period patients were eating organic, catered foods.
So, if you want to make an impact on your health in a hurry, consider eating fewer canned and processed foods and avoid microwaving them in plastic containers whenever you can.
Environmental Health Perspectives March 30, 2011 Free Full Text PDF
USA Today/Green House March 30, 2011
Breast Cancer Fund March 30, 2011
Silent Spring Institute March 30, 2011 Full Free Text PDFs