A recent article published on CNN’s website suggested that phthalates can be found in your fast food orders. Phthalates are used as plasticizers in a variety of household products and can disrupt the hormones in your body. CNN journalist Carina Storrs reported that “The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists released a report in 2013 stating that high levels of exposure to phthalates could lead to adverse reproductive outcomes in women. Research has linked these chemicals with increased risk of fibroids and endometriosis, which can cause infertility, and reduced IQ and behavioral problems in children exposed in the womb. High phthalate levels have also been linked with diabetes risk in women and adolescents.”
Diet is emerging as the most common way human absorb hormone disruptors, but this chemical can be found in other things such as soaps, nail polishes, and medications. Phthalates can be transferred to fast and processed food from plastic gloves, and conveyor belts. Studies have shown that meat and grain products hold the most phthalates, perhaps because of their fat content they absorb more, or they may absorb more based on the way they are processed.
DEHP, one of the most common phthalates, has already been banned in products like children’s toys, however the levels set by the EPA have not been changed since 1988.