Did You Know the Choices You Make Before and During Pregnancy Can Impact the Health of Your Great Grandchildren?
A recent report published by EWG confirms that exposure to toxins, early life nutrition and radiation can have a negative impact on our children, grandchildren, and even great-grandchildren! These exposures include pesticides, plastics, and household chemicals, just to name a few (Source).
A study completed on rats at Washington State University at Pullman exposed the rats to jet fuel, bug repellants and plastic additives. The exposed rats reproduced, and although their offspring were not exposed to the toxins, traces of the substances were found in 3 additional generations! These animals also experienced early puberty, decreased egg count and an increase in nonviable sperm.
How Does this Translate to Humans?
In today’s world, more and more attention is being paid to the discipline of Epigenetics. Epigenetics involves the environment surrounding our DNA. In the past, it was once believed that we were either genetically predisposed to a condition or we were not. We now realize that there are many factors (nutrition, exposure to toxins, nutrients, etc.) that affect whether or not a gene is turned on or off. This means that we actually have more control over our health than originally thought – we can actually influence our DNA, specifically during the 3-12 months prior to conception and during pregnancy.
Today’s environment is extremely toxic. Chemicals in our food, cleaning, personal care and gardening products contain many chemicals, some of which are endocrine disruptors. These agents attach to the hormone-binding sites in our cells, thus altering our hormonal balance. Many experts believe that these factors have a direct influence on the rising infertility rates, increases in behavioral and neurological disorders in children, developmental delays and even pediatric cancers.
The Foods & Chemicals We are Exposed to During Preconception and Pregnancy Have a Direct Effect on the Health of Many Generations to Come!!
What can We Do?
- Avoid pesticides – this goes for our food (choose organic whenever possible!), our lawn care, and bug repellent.
- Eat clean and avoid processed foods.
- A general rule of thumb for personal care products – don’t put anything on your skin that you wouldn’t eat! Our skin is “the largest organ in our body” and it absorbs what we put on it!