(NaturalNews) Girls as young as 7 years old are now beginning to develop breasts and undergo other body changes that their mothers had not experienced until years later. The prime culprit for this new phenomena is bisphenol A, better known as simply BPA.
BPA is a colorless solid chemical compound which has two phenol chemical groups and is widely used to make polycarbonate polymers and epoxy resins used to make plastics. Prolonged storage as well as high heat cause BPA to leech out. When BPA is leeched into the human body, it mimics estrogen and can offset the delicate hormonal balance in the developing child.
Too profitable to fail?
So widespread has BPA become that it is now found in the vast majority of plastics used commercially today. Most containers and plastic bags contain the compound and it is even found in dollar bills and toilet paper. Most bottled water, which is often subjected to extreme temperatures, has an increased concentration of BPA in the water content. A majority of canned products contain BPA, used as lining for the insides of cans. Microwavable food often comes in containers or bags containing BPA and is especially susceptible to leeching due to high temperatures.
As Natural News reported in April, 2010, the average age that girls begin puberty currently stands at around ten years - a drop of more than a year in a single generation. Notably, a century ago the average age for the onset of puberty in girls was 16. Early onset of puberty in girls can cause a number of problems later in life due to hormonal imbalance, including increased risk of breast cancer. Studies have shown that risk of breast cancer is reduced by7 percentfor every year the onset of puberty is delayed.
Natural News also reported in 2010 that Canada was the first country in the world to declare bisphenol A (BPA) to be a toxic substance that poses risks to human health and the environment. However, annual BPA sales have been estimated at $8 Billion and as history has shown us time and again, it is unlikely that the United States will take action anytime soon against such a highly profitable item. In fact, just this past week Natural News reported that -right on cue - the FDA announced that it would not ban BPA due to lack of evidence of harm.
Other early puberty culprits
While BPA has been identified as a major cause of the early onset of puberty in young girls, it is far from the only culprit. Another class of compounds known as phthalates have been similarly found to disrupt hormone balance. Phthalates are a class of chemicals used as softeners, or plasticizers, in polyvinyl chloride (PVC) vinyl products, including children's toys, decorating and building products, blood bags and solvents. Phthalates are also found in cosmetics, personal care products, wood finishes and insecticides.
Another likely culprit in early puberty onset is the growth hormones which are found in abundance in meat and dairy products. It is likely the growth hormones which are fed to fatten cows, chickens and other food animalsto increase dairy production are behind much of the links which studies have observed between meat and dairy consumption and the early onset of puberty in girls.
Many believe that soy foods and products also play a role in hormonal imbalance problems. Soy is heavily promoted as a health food, but is often highly genetically modified. In addition, soy contains large amounts of estrogen and has been found to affect hormone balance.