A national American university study shows an increase in their exposure to chemicals.
Review earlier this week environmental science and technology shared the results of a study conducted by researchers at the University of California, San Francisco. The study shows increased exposure to chemicals from plastics and pesticides that can be harmful to a developing fetus.
The study involved 12-year-old and 171 women from different states of the country, of whom one-third were white women, 40% were Hispanic, and the rest were multiracial.
Researchers measured 103 chemicals, mostly from pesticides, plastics and chemical substitutes for BPA and phthalates, using a new method that captures dozens of chemicals, or traces, from a single urine sample.
Many of the chemicals women were exposed to were substitutes, new forms of chemicals that have been banned or phased out and can be just as harmful as those they replace. The study also found that many women were exposed to neonicotinoids, a type of pesticide toxic to bees.
A warning statement
More than 80% of the chemicals were found in at least one of the women participating in the study, and more than 33% of the substances were found in the majority of the participants. And some of these chemicals were present in greater amounts than in previous studies.
Tracy J. Woodruff, director of the reproductive health and environment program at the University of California and lead author of the study, comments on these findings: “This is the first time we can measure chemical levels in such a large and diverse group of pregnant women — and not just identify the chemicals”.
More parabens in women of Latin descent
She adds: “Our results clearly show that the number and levels of chemicals present in pregnant women increase during a very vulnerable period of development for both the pregnant person and the fetus.”.
Another fact brought up this time by a co-author of the study, Jessie Buckley, who examines exposure to environmental chemicals in early life: “While pesticides and chemical substitutes were widely used among all women, we were surprised to find that Latino women had significantly higher levels of parabens, phthalates, and bisphenols.”.