Phthalates Tied to Atypical Boy Baby Behavior

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We already know that humans have health problems associated with plastics. In a new study, the post-birth behavior of a group of young boys is tied to higher exposure phthalates.

Males exposed to high degrees of phthalates , chemicals widely used in plastic furniture, while in the womb are less likely to joing rough and tumble games. The findings are reported in the International Journal of Andrology.

Phthalates are banned in toys in the EU but are widely used in adult products. The US banned their use in toys as part of the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act. A study Baby Care products: Possible Source of Infant Phthalate Exposure, published in Pediatrics, 2008, indicates that infants are widely exposed in cosmetics and personal care products.

Some phthalates mimic the female hormone oestrogen.

Elizabeth Salter-Green, director of the chemicals campaign group CHEM Trust, said the results were worrying.

“We now know that phthalates, to which we are all constantly exposed, are extremely worrying from a health perspective, leading to disruption of male reproduction health and, it appears, male behaviour too.

“This feminising capacity of phthalates makes them true ‘gender benders’.” BBC News