New Report: Bisphenol-A: a cancerous oestrogenic toxin, found in the lining of tinned food can and babies bottlesEverybody is exposed to environmental hormones, called xenoestrogens: The January 2008 edition of Toxicology Letters1, published a report that showed that a type of plastic called polycarbonate, when heated, releases an environmental xenoestrogen called bisphenol-A. This xenoestrogen causes brain damage1 and hormone sensitive cancers (especially breast2,3,4and prostate cancer5). This type of plastic is contained in babies’ bottles1 and the inside-coating of every can of tinned food you eat6 (By the way, tinned food is cooked inside the tin, so there is plenty of heat to release biphenol-A from the innercoating, into the food, as was reported by the Environmental Working Group6 in the USA in March 2007). As a result of this report, the Canadian government has already banned polycarbonate from baby’s bottles and is investigating banning its use in tinned foods. No such ban exists in South Africa where polycarbonate is still used in babies’ bottles, and still coats the inside of every single can of food.
You are also exposed to hormones in the food we eat. Most cows and chickens are given growth and sex hormones to make them grow faster and bigger. These are stored in the fat of the animal for its entire life. You then consume these when you eat meat or drink milk. Pollution from exhaust fumes, as well a pesticides used on fruits and vegetables, and in your home, also all contain a type of oestrogenic substance that increases cancer risk in both men and women.This risk of cancer is greatly increased if you have a family history of cancer, are on hormone replacement therapy (even the oral contraceptive), or if you smoke, or if are overweight.
CANSA (The Cancer Association of South Africa) is also concerned about environmental estrogens:
CLICK HERE to listen to an SAfm radio interview with Professor Carl Albrecht, head of research at CANSA. Recorded on 2 July 2008, Monica Fairall interviews Professor Albrecht who explains CANSA’s concerns over environmental toxins that are in our food and water, and how these cause brain damage and increase the risk of cancers in both men and women.
Cancer protective nutrients:
There are known plant extracts that help protect men and women from cancer. These include two cruciferous vegetable extracts (found in broccoli, cauliflower and Brussels sprouts), known as I3C (indole-3-carbinol) and DIM (di-indole-methane).These help block the effects of cancerous oestrogens and xenoestrogens in your body. Another nutrient known as curcumin (obtained from turmeric spice) stimulates phase II liver metabolism. This means it flushes these oestrogens and xenoestrogenfrom your body. There are other cancer protective nutrients too, such as quercetin, selenium, resveratrol, EGCG (fromgreen tea), lycopene, co-enzyme Q10 and folic acid.
(6) Environmental Working Group; A Survey of Bisphenol A in U.S. Canned Foods; March 5, 2007; http://www.ewg.org/reports/bisphenola