60 MiNueTs : Toxic Chemicals

UCSF Program on Reproductive Health and the Environment, 2017

The University of California San Francisco (UCSF) Program on Reproductive Health and the Environment (PRHE)’s mission is to create a healthier environment for human reproduction and development through advancing scientific inquiry, clinical care and health policies that prevent exposures to harmful chemicals in our environment.

PRHE is housed within the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences, in the UCSF School of Medicine, one of the nation’s most prestigious medical schools. The Department is renowned for promoting cutting-edge reproductive science research, extending the frontiers of multidisciplinary women’s health care and professional education, advocating for women’s health at local, state and national levels, and engaging community involvement.

More Information

Healthy Living – Out and About – Top Tips Card

Prevention starts in your everyday environments

image of Healthy Living - Out and About - Top Tips Card
Prevention starts in your everyday environments.

Read the tips below, then download the printable card to share with friends and family.

1.  Find the right sunscreen
Many sunscreens contain hormone-disrupting chemicals that are bad for us and for aquatic life. Look for ones with non-nanoized titanium dioxide or zinc oxide, and avoid ones with 3-(4-methylbenzylidene)-camphor (4-MBC); octinoxate/octyl- methoxycinnamate (OMC); homosalate (HMS); and oxybenzone.

2.  Find safe ways to fight germs
These days it seems like everything claims to be antibacterial—soaps, toothpaste, clothing, bedding, band-aids, toys, cutting boards—you name it. Chances are, these products contain triclosan, an antimicrobial agent that is suspected of interfering with the hormone systems of humans and wildlife. There’s no evidence that triclosan is more effective than soap and water, so trade in the toxics for some good, old- fashioned elbow grease.

3.  Go chemical-free in your garden
Chemical pesticides are designed to kill pests and weeds, so it’s no surprise that they aren’t good for humans either. And their residue can hang around for years, allowing for ongoing exposure. Ask your garden store about non-toxic alternatives, or look for organic pest- management tips such as DIY recipes that rely on everyday items like vinegar and dish soap.

4.  Join the Breast Cancer Fund to learn the science, get more tips and take action.

Healthy Living – Health and Beauty – Top Tips Card

Prevention starts with your morning routine

image of Healthy Living - Health and Beauty - Top Tips Card
Prevention starts with your morning routine.

Read the tips below, then download the printable card to share with friends and family.

1.  When it comes to personal care products, simple is best
Decrease your exposure to toxic chemicals in cosmetics by using fewer products and choosing those with simpler ingredients. And avoid fragrance—that single ingredient can contain dozens of chemicals.

2.  Don’t be fooled by empty “organic” and “natural” claims on beauty care products
Because the cosmetics industry is largely unregulated, these claims may have no meaning. Read labels for specific information on a product’s ingredients.

3.  Avoid these problematic ingredients
• ingredients with “PEG” and “eth” in the name (potential 1,4-dioxane contamination)
• butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA) and butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT)
• diethanolamine (DEA) and triethanolamine (TEA) (possible nitrosamine contamination)
• formaldehyde
• quaternium
• DMDM hydantoin
• imidazolidinyl urea
• fragrance
• hydroquinone
• nonylphenol
• parabens
• petrolatum
• phthalates (DBP & DEP)
• synthetic musks
• toluene
• triclosan and triclocarban

4.  Join the Breast Cancer Fund to learn the science, get more tips and take action.

Healthy Living Home – Top Tips Card

Prevention starts at home

image of healthy-living-home-top-tips-card
Prevention starts at home.

Read the tips below, then download the printable card to share with friends and family.

1.  Eat organic and kick the can
When possible, choose organic foods and hormone-free meat and dairy. Buying products grown organically reduces pesticide use, which is good for families, farmworkers and the environment. And avoid canned foods until companies replace toxic BPA-based can linings with safe alternatives.

2.  Take it easy on the plastic
When choosing kitchenware and water bottles, go old-school with stainless steel and glass. And never microwave in plastic—even “microwave-safe” plastic can leach chemicals into your food when heated.

3.  Choose cleaning products that show you what they’re made of
Companies are not required to disclose ingredients of cleaners and detergents, so look for products made by companies that disclose ingredients, or make your own with things like baking soda and vinegar. For recipes check out Vassar College’s Environmental Risks and Breast Cancer Program.

4.  Stick with oil for pans that don’t stick, and use elbow grease to remove stains
Although there’s no denying they make our life easier, non-stick pans and stain-resistant materials can contain toxic polyfluorinated chemicals. Choose stainless steel or cast iron pots and pans, and consider skipping the stain-resistant clothes and carpets

5.  Join the Breast Cancer Fund to learn the science, get more tips and take action.

The Connection Between Breast Cancer and the Environment

Breast Cancer Fund, State of the Evidence, Sixth Edition 2010

image of state-of-the-evidence
The Connection Between Breast Cancer and the Environment

From 2002 to 2010, the Breast Cancer Fund produced six editions of the landmark report, State of the Evidence: The Connection between Breast Cancer and the Environment.

Each edition presented a comprehensive summary of the scientific evidence to date linking exposures to chemicals and radiation in our everyday environments to increased breast cancer risk.

Abstract (pages 39 > 40)

The clearest evidence that a synthetic estrogen can increase risk for cancer decades later comes from the tragic experience with diethylstilbestrol (DES). Between 1938 and 1971, doctors prescribed DES for millions of pregnant women to prevent miscarriages. The drug was contraindicated in pregnancy use when daughters of women who took the drug were found to have higher rates of an extremely rare vaginal cancer compared to those who were not exposed to DES in the womb (Bibbo, 1977; Herbst, 1971). Research indicates that DES exposure is also associated with an increased risk of breast cancer in the women who took it during the 1950s (Colton, 1993; TitusErnstoff, 2001).

In a follow-up study of daughters who were exposed prenatally to DES, a nearly twofold increase in breast cancer risk was observed in women older than age 40. An even greater effect was found for women over the age of 50, although relatively few of the daughters had yet reached that age at the time of the study (Palmer, 2006; Troisi, 2007).

Recent studies examining the mechanisms by which DES might be exerting its carcinogenic effects indicate that the compound activates the same subcellular pathways that estradiol does, both by altering cellular metabolism and interaction with DNA (Saeed, 2009) and by increasing the rate of breast cell proliferation (Larson, 2006).

Buyer Beware: Toxic BPA and Regrettable Substitutes in the Linings of Canned Food

NEW REPORT finds BPA in cans tested.
Find out if this chemical is lurking in your pantry

Toxic BPA Is Still Hiding in Many Popular National Brands of Canned Food

This report, Buyer Beware: Toxic BPA & Regrettable Substitutes in the Linings of Canned Food, was conceived, authored and produced as a collaborative effort by the Breast Cancer Fund; Campaign for Healthier Solutions; Clean Production Action; Ecology Center; Environmental Defence (Canada); and Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families’ Mind the Store campaign.

Test Results and BPA Policies Vary Widely in Retailers’ “Private-Label” Canned Food

Bisphenol A (BPA) is a toxic, endocrine-disrupting chemical that negatively impacts our hormonal systems, contributing to a host of harmful health effects. Hundreds of scientific studies have linked extremely small amounts of BPA, measured in parts per billion and even parts per trillion, to an increased risk of breast and prostate cancer, infertility, type-2 diabetes, obesity, asthma, and behavioral changes including attention deficit disorder. It is likely that people are exposed to BPA from canned foods at levels that are compromising our health.

When It Comes to Labeling, It’s Anyone’s Guess • Even though most national

Table of Contents

“BPA free” May Not Mean Safe

  1. Bisphenol A: Science, Health Effects and FoodBased Exposure
  2. The Safety of BPA Alternatives
  3. Manufacturer and Retailer Can Lining Surveys
  4. Study Design and Experimental Methods
  5. Findings
  6. Limitations of Our Findings
  7. Making the Case for Informed Substitution
  8. Current BPA Regulatory Landscape
  9. Solutions: Getting BPA Out of Food Packaging, Disclosing and Ensuring Safer Alternatives
Act Now !

All Foods Are Not Created Equal When It Comes to Cans

Ten Tips to Prevent Breast Cancer

Aiming to stop the disease before it starts

The Breast Cancer Fund is working to shift the conversation from awareness to prevention. Here is an overview about their top 10 tips to prevent breast cancer:

Breast Cancer Fund Blog image
The following Breast Cancer Fun tips, which are all developed from scientific research, will help turn awareness into individual action in your own life to prevent breast cancer.
  1. Lower your exposure to medical radiation – see related.
  2. If you eat meat, choose hormone-free – about livestock.
  3. Choose organic fruits and veggies – avoid pesticides
    about pesticides.
  4. Choose cleaning products that tell you what’s in them… or make your own
    about safer chemicals.
  5. Ditch your Teflon pots and pans
    about EDCs.
  6. Avoid toxic kids PJs
    about safer chemicals.
  7. Don’t be fooled by “natural” claims on beauty products
    about safe cosmetics.
  8. Avoid canned foods – about BPA.
  9. Find safe ways to fight germs – about Triclosan.
  10. Know your plastics – about phthalates.

Read more about the Top 10 tips to prevent breast cancer on preventionstartshere, Breast Cancer Fund Blog, September 16, 2014.

Toxic Chemicals in Cosmetics

The Real Cost of Beauty

Toxic Chemicals in Cosmetics
Toxic Chemicals in Cosmetics

Image source tweet:

Hey @Revlon: when will u get toxic chemicals linked to #cancer out of our makeup? Dare to make #safecosmetics

The Campaigns:

More Information:

On Flickr®

  • Watch the Diaporama, and the Media photo set on  DES Diethylstilbestrol's photostream on Flickr
  • If you already have a flickr® account, add us as a contact
  • Email your photos to des.daughter@gmail.com with a short description and title :-)

Disrupted Development: The Dangers of Prenatal BPA Exposure

A 2013 Report by the Breast Cancer Fund

Disrupted Development:

Disrupted Development: The Dangers of Prenatal BPA Exposure
The 2013 Breast Cancer Fund Report

A 2013 Report by the Breast Cancer Fund

  • Protecting Us from BPA = Protecting the Next Generation
  • A Brief History of BPA
  • Prenatal Exposure to BPA: Exploring the Science
  • DES: A Cautionary Tale
  • Health Effects of Prenatal BPA Exposure
  • Table 1. Prenatal BPA Exposure and Biological Effects in Animals
  • Table 2. Prenatal BPA Exposure and Health Associations in Humans
  • Solutions: Getting BPA out of Food Packaging
  • Alternatives to BPA
  • APPENDIX 1 – Maternal BPA Levels in Humans
  • APPENDIX 2 – Prenatal BPA Levels in Humans
  • APPENDIX 3 – Research Methods: Making Sense of Animal and Human Studies

Sources: Breast Cancer Fund’s report ” Disrupted Development: The Dangers of Prenatal BPA Exposure “, a comprehensive review of the scientific literature on prenatal BPA exposure, September 2013.

Find all our posts about BPA – Endocrine Disruptors – Pesticides – Phthalates. Read more about DES and the DES-exposed – Prescriptions Drugs – Pregnancy

On Flickr®

  • Watch the Diaporama, and the DES research photo set on DES Diethylstilbestrol's photostream on Flickr
  • If you already have a flickr® account, add us as a contact.
    Email your photos to des.daughter@gmail.com with a short description and title :-)

Did you call the Congress to demand for Safer Chemicals?

Protect our children with #RealReform on toxic chemicals.
Demand #SaferChemicals and help prevent #BreastCancer

Call Congress to demand #SaferChemicals
The #StrollerBrigade Campaign

via Breast Cancer Fund tweet:
Protect children w/#RealReform on toxic chemicals. Demand #SaferChemicals and prevent #BreastCancer. ”
BCF Website – on Facebook – on Flickr – on Twitter.

Related posts:

On Flickr®

  • Watch the Diaporama, and the DES research photo set on DES Diethylstilbestrol's photostream on Flickr
  • If you already have a flickr® account, add us as a contact.
    Email your photos to des.daughter@gmail.com with a short description and title :-)