People who eat fast food have hazardous levels of phthalates

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fast-food-chicken(NaturalHealth365) Most people who consume fast food are aware that it isn’t good for them. Fast food is notoriously high in fat, sodium, processed carbohydrates and calories. However, what consumers might not be aware of is that these foods are also high in harmful chemicals called phthalates.

A study from the George Washington University Milken Institute School of Public Health has found that those who eat fast food are exposed to harmful chemicals in addition to the other known health hazards of these foods. The study appeared in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives.

Researchers found that people who ate large amounts of fast food had the highest levels of phthalates in their systems, as much as 40 percent higher than those who did not eat fast food.

Fast food warning: Phthalates linked with health problems like reproductive system issues

Phthalates belong to a class of chemicals used in food packaging as well as fast food production. These toxic substances have been linked with many serious health issues in both adults and children – including damage to the reproductive system.  Studies have shown that these harmful chemicals are prone to leaching out of plastic food packaging and contaminating the food within it, making processed foods even worse.

Those individuals studied provided detailed information about what they had eaten within the last 24 hours. They also provided a urinary sample to be tested for two specific phthalates: DiNP and DEHP.

Processed meat and carbohydrates pose the biggest health risk

Meat and grain items contributed the most significantly to phthalate levels. Grain items includes bread, pizza, cake, rice dishes, burritos and noodle dishes. Other studies corroborate the consumption of processed grains in particular as a major source of harmful exposure to chemicals leached into the food.

The researchers discovered what we all know – on a common sense level. The more we eat fast food, the more toxic we become. In fact, levels of DEHP were nearly 24 percent higher, and DiNP levels were up to 40 percent higher in fast food eaters.

In addition to food packaging materials, phthalates have been found in a disturbingly wide variety of products, including some perfumes and even children’s toys. In 2008, the use of phthalates in toy production was banned.

Bisphenol A is another major health concern

Bisphenol A, or BPA, another common food packaging material, was also found in study participants. This chemical is linked with numerous health problems and behavioral issues, especially in young children. While there was no association between the amount of fast food eaten and BPA, persons who consumed fast food meat products tended to have higher levels of bisphenol A than those who reported not eating fast food.

This information should be a cause for major concern in regards to the continued use of phthalates in food processing. Clearly, these chemicals are leaching out of packaging components and into the foods that many people eat.  And, without a doubt, fast food is one of the worst food choices.

Consumers now have more reasons than ever to avoid fast food and other processed choices. To minimize phthalate and bisphenol A exposure and maximize health, favor natural, organic food choices with as little processing as possible.

References:

https://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/news/fullstory_158293.html

http://www.cdc.gov/biomonitoring/phthalates_factsheet.html

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/04/160413083833.htm

http://news.discovery.com/human/health/fast-food-consumers-chow-down-on-chemicals-160413.htm

http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/309061.php

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  • Martha Hines

    I didn’t think we needed another reason to avoid fast foods. If we did this article supplied it.

  • James Langan

    Who would think that packaged food is safe, unless you listen to the fast food industry. They have been plenty of recalls on this so called safe food.

  • Ted Johnson

    This is also an environmental problem. The country throws away $11.4 billion worth of packaging annually. Many items land in the landfills that receive nearly 9 million tons of discarded packaging. These end up in waterways, storm drain systems and finally in our oceans.

    According to the Ocean Conservancy among the top-five are plastic beverage bottles, food wrappers and plastic bottle caps.

  • Liz Callahan

    Fast food means enabling brand promotion. Packaging is a marketing tool with great leverage. The packaging industry is big and profitable. Plastic wrapped food is the norm. Many people feel safer buying a wrapped item then something loose on the grocery shelf.

    The information in this article will not be found or talked about in board meeting. There they will talk about profits and costs.