A new study clarifies the link between early puberty and endocrine disruptors present in some cosmetics. Which are the most dangerous for the health of our children. It makes the point.
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More and more cases of pubertés early in France
1 173 new cases cases of early puberty among girls under the age of 8 years and 117 in boys under 9 years of age are reported every year, according to Public Health France. How to explain this disturbing phenomenon ?
This is the question posed by researchers from the University of California, Berkeley (United States), for the purposes of a study published in the journal Human Reproduction. The purpose of this ? Make the link between early puberty and exposure to endocrine disruptors present in some cosmetics.
They studied 340 pregnant women and their children for twenty years, by regularly measuring the concentrations of three groups of chemicals in the urine of : phthalates, parabens and phenols.
What are the ingredients to watch out for ?
Phthalates are found in perfumes and some nail Polish, parabens are used in shampoos, moisturizing creams or even shaving foam, while the phenols are used in the composition of antimicrobial soaps.
Their first discovery ? The exposure of pregnant women to these chemicals may have an impact on the precocious puberty of their unborn babies.
The researchers also found that women who had higher concentrations of phthalate in their urine during pregnancy gave birth to girls who developed pubic hair earlier than the other.
Similarly, women who had high levels of phenol in their urine when they were pregnant have given birth to the girls who have their periods earlier than others.
But this is not all : the girls, aged nine years, who had levels of parabens higher in their urine had reached the three stages of puberty earlier than the other.
Increased risks to the health
“Although more research is needed, people should know that certain chemicals in cosmetics can disrupt hormones”, says Kim Harley, lead author of the study.
And for good reason : early puberty, as this study and many others associate themselves with certain substances in cosmetics, increases the risk of mental illness, breast cancer and ovarian cancer in women, but also of cancer of the testis in man.