Maintaining balance in a world where we are almost constantly exposed to toxic chemicals is no easy task. But when you’re seeking the highest state of wellbeing possible, taking the time to understand (and minimize) environmental chemicals is simply non-negotiable.
We recently wrote about how hormone disruptors can seriously mess with your wellbeing by causing imbalances in your delicate internal ecosystem. Xenoestrogens are a sub-category of this hormone disruptors group that send your hormonal balance off-kilter by mimicking estrogen and disrupting your body’s proper functioning.
Xenoestrogens are man-made chemicals that act like estrogen (“xeno” meaning foreign) and enter the body from outside environmental sources. The problem? They give you none of the same benefits that natural estrogen does and instead create a burden, known as “estrogen dominance,” on your endocrine system (the system that manages your hormonal levels), leading to an overall imbalance in your body.
Under normal circumstances, estrogen gets eliminated naturally by the body once its job is done. Synthetic xenoestrogens, on the other hand, take up residence in your fat cells and specifically disrupt the proper functioning of areas like your adrenals, your thyroid, the reproductive system, breast, and ovaries.
So, how do you make sure your estrogen levels stay in the normal range? Here are five ways to limit synthetic estrogen exposure and take charge of keeping your hormones in their natural state of balance:
While plastics might be convenient, they have a dark side: leaching hormone-like chemicals into food, water, and the environment. Interestingly, even BPA-free plastics are not a helpful alternative and heating something in plastic, don’t even go there! Opt for low to no plastics in your life for the best guarantee of avoiding xenoestrogens from plastics.
A large part of the dietary xenoestrogens we consume comes from dairy and meat products. Conventionally farmed animals are often fed estrogen-containing growth hormones so opting for grass-fed meats, pasture-raised eggs, and organic options is ideal or, at a minimum, hormone-free produce.
While there are no xenoestrogens in water itself, water gets contaminated with these chemicals from environmental and human/animal waste sources. Consider investing in a good quality water filter for your home, refill your stainless steel or glass bottles before you leave for the day, and avoid plastic alternatives.
Use chemical-free, biodegradable laundry, and household cleaning products to minimize your exposure and look for choline-free and unbleached paper products when purchasing items like toilet paper, paper towel, and feminine hygiene products.
Your skin is a sieve, and estrogen-mimicking chemicals linger in many cosmetics, shampoos, and body lotions. Do a clean beauty swap of personal care products that contain toxic chemicals like synthetic fragrances and parabens and check our guide to work out what’s healthy and what’s hype.
Take the time to reduce your day-to-day exposure to xenoestrogens (and hormone disruptors in general), tackle one area at a time, and start to bring your wellbeing back to a state of greater balance. While it can be easy to feel overwhelmed with all the things you “should” and “shouldn’t” be doing for your wellbeing, making thoughtful decisions about what you choose to bring into your personal environment is well worth the effort.