We now live in the environment of xenoestrogens and the research by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows that a shocking 93 percent of Americans over the age of six have BPAs (Bisphenol A) in their bodies. BPAs are only one of at least 800 chemicals that are “capable of interfering with hormone receptors, hormone synthesis or hormone conversion,” according to a recent World Health Organization-United Nations study of the 100,000 or so chemicals used in global commerce and industry. (1)
Today, xenoestrogens (the prefix “xeno” literally means foreign, and xenoestrogens means “foreign estrogens.”) contaminate almost everything you eat, drink and touch. And when they’re ingested, they interact with your body’s estrogen systems in a far more powerful way than natural estrogen. Our food supply is loaded with traces of herbicides, pesticides and petrochemical residues from plastics, all of which contain xenoestrogens.
They are in the coatings of food and drinks cans, water bottles, baby bottles, dental fillings and sealants. They are in your eyeglass lens, DVDs and CDs, electronics and sports equipment. They are in nail polish, makeup, lotions, soaps, deodorants, shampoos, household cleaning products, even cash register receipts and garden hoses. The list goes on.
However, the biggest source for xenoestrogen exposure is plastics, particularly the soft plastics that come into contact with the foods and beverages we consume. You see, when plastics are exposed to heat or sunlight, or even just left to sit for a long time, these chemicals begin to break down and leach into our foods.
A recent U.K. study detected xenoestrogens in the breast tumors of 19 of 20 women tested. (2) In another study, researchers tested 40 breast cancer patients. They found higher xenoestrogen levels in the same area where the breast cancer tumors developed. (3) These are only two out of hundreds of global clinical studies that reveal the devastating impact of xenoestrogens.
I wish that in 2007 I knew of this during the time my spouse was diagnosed with breast cancer and we had the tissue biopsied to see if it had any of the xenoestrogens from chemical sources. Even then and now, doctors are under the belief that estrogen dominance is just a matter of having too much estrogen or too little progesterone. Most mainstream physicians still refuse to acknowledge the dangers of xenoestrogens and the estrogen dominance it creates in the body. In recent years, the recognition of excess estrogen as a cause of severe pre-menopausal and menopausal symptom has led to hundreds of brands of creams containing progesterone, that levels out estrogen levels in the body. However, they rarely work.
First and foremost, most xenoestrogens are fat soluble, so they accumulate for years in your fat cells. That means that these foreign chemicals might not reveal themselves for decades or, even into the next generation, if there was high exposure during the pregnancy. The breasts are especially vulnerable, because breasts are mostly fat.
Some of these different xenoestrogens act together to magnify estrogenic properties. Your hormones are chemical messengers. They travel in your bloodstream and send signals that instruct the cells at various target sites to carry out key biological tasks. They do not act alone though. All of the female sex hormones, estrogen, progesterone, testosterone and DHEA interact with each other. How much or how little of these hormones is made at any one time relies on a complicated feedback system between your brain, your adrenal glands and your ovaries.
Our hormones are dynamic. And when xenoestrogens bind to the estrogen receptors around your body, they interfere with the natural communication process and they unbalance the entire endocrine system.
Estrogen’s target sites include the breasts, uterus, and other parts of the reproductive system. That’s why cancers develop in these target areas when xenoestrogens disrupt your natural hormone balance. I am not a big fan of mammograms due to the dangers of pressing so hard on the breasts that if there are “cancer cells” that are forming in the duct and that extreme pressure can open up the pathways for the cancer to possibly grow. These xenoestrogens mimic the estrogen chemically and will find its way to the estrogen receptors in the breasts.
Because xenoestrogens are structurily similar to estrogen, they trick the body into thinking they are real hormones. But those BPAs, phthalates, parabens and others overload the estrogen receptors and essentially destroy them. Research published last year at the Morgridge Institute for Research at the University of Wisconsin-Madison revealed that “gynocological cancers” are often triggered when your body’s estrogen receptors get overwhelmed.(4) Cervical cancers for example, virtually start from the human papillomarvirus (HPV) infection. Morgridge Institute researchers revealed the condition switches gears from precancerous to cancerous when the estrogen receptors deplete to “the point of being undetectable.” (5)
What happens when all that excess estrogen has flooded to the target site and nothing to attach to because the receptors have been destroyed, then that’s when estrogen begins fueling the division of precancerous cells and turns them cancerous. Other studies reveal the similar impact of overwhelmed estrogen receptors on breast cancer, ovarian, uterine and endometrial cancer. (6,7,8,9)
These high levels of xenoestrogens begin to produce a flood of destructive free radicals. This causes the DNA to “misfire” and produce other cellular defects that help cancer thrive. At the same time, high estrogen levels decrease the level of one of your body’s master antioxidants, glutathione. This raises oxidative stress in your cells and can often be another early step in the formation of cancer cells.
In other words, xenoestrogens not only overwhelm and deplete your estrogen receptors, they raise the levels of cancer-causing free radicals and wipe out your body’s best defense against them. Also, these abnormal estrogens also slow down your thyroid function. Multiple studies have linked thyroid dysfunction to breast cancer and numerous gynecological cancers. (10) We are all suffering from estrogen dominance. You might have sinus problems, headaches, dry eyes, asthma or cold hands and feet, and not know to attribute them to your exposure to xenoestrogens.
If you ask mainstream doctors how to get rid of xenoestrogens in the body, you will most likely see a bemused face at best. Even with all the multiple studies, most doctors will answer similarly to the companies that manufacture xenoestrogens and will say that the quantities are so small and they are harmless. And, besides, we have kidneys and a liver to detoxify the body.
What most people don’t know is that the liver and kidneys were designed to filter organic toxins (the waste the body made naturally, back when we lived in a xenoestrogenic environment). Lowering excess estrogen can look like this:
Avoid products that contain xenoestrogens as best you can;
Keep food and drinks away from plastics whenever possible;
Stop buying foods and beverages packaged in plastic;
Replace plastic dishes and Tupperware with glass and ceramic;
Never put plastic dishes in a dishwasher. Not only will the plastic contaminate the next food it comes into contact with, the other dishes will be coated in a film of xenoestrogens.
There are plenty other tricks that I have that you may want to add to your supplement roster that will chelate with these xenoestrogens to help your body to detox the years of gunk that has built up in our fat cells. To expedite some of this process on the microcirculation level, I can have a conversation with you about the BEMER Technology related to expediting the nutrients to those areas of your body that need it the most.
LEGAL DISCLAIMER: The statements herein have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration, and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent disease. We make no curative claims. This information in this blog is being provided to you for educational and informational purposes only with regard to healthy living. It is a self-help tool for your own use, it is not medical advice. Always consult with your doctor when considering dietary, exercise, or prescription changes.
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(1) World Health Organization, United Nations Environment Program. “State of the science of endocrine disrupting chemicals.” Published 2013.
(2) Darbre PD, et al. “Concentrations of parabens in human breast tumors.” J Appl Toxicol, 2012;32(3), 219-232.
(3) Barr, L, Metaxas, G, et al. “Measurement of paraben concentrations in human breast tissue at serial locations across the breast from axilla to sternum.” J Appl Toxicol, 2012;32(3), 219-232.
(4) den Boon J, Pyeon D, et al. “Molecular transitions from papillomavirus infection to cervical precancer and cancer: Role of stromal estrogen receptor signaling.” Proc Natl Acad Sci. 2015 Jun 23.
(6) Shaaban AM, O’Neill PA, et al. “Declining estrogen receptor-beta expression defines malignant progression of human breast neoplasia.” Am J Surg Pathol. 2003 Dec; 27(12):1502-12.
(7)Bardin A, Nathalie Boulle N, et al. Loss of ERβ expression as a common step in estrogen-dependent tumor progression. Endocr Relat Cancer. 2004 Sep; 11(3): 537-551.
(8) Shah, YY. “Regulation of estrogen receptor signaling in breast and endometrial cancer by the src kinase pathway, the micronutrient selenium and by novel tamoxifen-regulated biomarkers.” (2005). Theses and Dissertations. Paper 1459.
(9) Berger C, Y. Qian Y, et al. “The p53-Estrogen Receptor Loop in Cancer.” Curr Mol Med. 2013 Sep.
(10) Brinton LA, Sakoda LC, et al. “Relationships of Uterine and Ovarian Tumors to Pre-existing Cronic Conditions.” Gynecol Oncol. 2007 Dec; 107(3): 487-494.