Plastic. It's everywhere these days because it is so convenient. Cheap to produce (a petroleum bi-product), strong, light, easy to clean and literally indestructible. But as with many 'indispensable' things that modern society has adopted due to their convenience, plastics are not only having a massive impact on the health of the planet (through production pollution and at the other end of their lifespan, as waste) but they are also contributing to the ever growing epidemic of lifestyle diseases through their affect on hormones. Plastics - hormone disruptors Some of the chemicals used to manufacture plastics are hormone disruptive, with phthalates and BPA being the worst offenders. Please also refer to my Blog On the Nose in regards to phthalates in synthetic fragrances. What does hormone disruptive mean, and why does this even matter, after all a lot of the time hormones get a pretty bad press? In actual fact hormones are vital chemical messengers that coordinate the processes of growth, metabolism and fertility. In addition, hormones help to control the immune system. Hormone disruption can mean several things, including that the chemicals (such as BPA and phthalates): mimic hormones, interfere with the production of hormones, prevent the effective utilisation of hormones, cause generalised inflammation (due to immune system compromise) and they can also impede the detoxification processes required with excess hormones. Doesn't my body deal with chemical exposure itself?
The theme of Men’s Health Week 2018 (11th-18thJune) is “Men & Families – making healthy connections”. I love this multi-faceted theme! We can take from it that improved family connections can improve the health of men (and women, for that matter), that family can be very influential on the wellbeing of men, and that the emotional wellbeing of both men and women is dependent on connection with other humans and finding the right tribe. Unfortunately it seems that men in general are not nearly as good at making and sustaining healthy connections as women are and this is one of the contributing factors to men’s health being overall a lot worse than women’s health. Men die younger, have more preventable diseases, more accidents and a greater risk of lifestyle related disease than women, which is why Men’s Health Week is a thing! Men seek advice and interventions for symptoms at a rate that is much slower and less frequent than women, almost certainly contributing to their higher rates of disease and early morbidity. What we really want everyone to do is to work on prevention and looking at underlying causes, rather than just band-aid solutions and treating symptoms. Western culture dictates that men should be outwardly strong, independent and largely silent about what is going on inside of them on all levels – physical, mental, emotional and spiritual. Men are