One of the ways that I hope to serve people better is to explain breaking research in a timely fashion. The following are just a handful of the hormone related studies that can impact you or someone that you care about. Stay informed and click on the link of any study that is of personal interest to you. Then discuss the findings with your healthcare provider.
- PCOS linked to a growing risk of other health disorders—Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) is the most common hormone imbalance of reproductive age women affecting an estimated 5 million in the USA alone. A new study found that in addition to the increased risk of heart disease, obesity and diabetes; women with this disorder also have an elevated risk of asthma, musculoskeletal disorders, mental health problems (i.e., depression and anxiety) as well as an increased risk of certain type of cancer. There was also a noted increase in the risk of miscarriage, ectopic pregnancy and endometriosis. Bottom line is that taking steps to correct this hormone imbalance may not only help you get pregnant but actually have a healthy pregnancy and healthier life afterwards!
- Radioactive Iodine used to treat thyroid cancer associated with lower subsequent birthrate—A new study found that women in their 30’s that were given radioactive iodine (RAI) to treat well differentiated thyroid cancer had about a 30% lower subsequent birthrate than their peers. It is uncertain whether or not this was a result of the treatment or the recommendation for a prolonged waiting period to conception after treatment. Regardless of the reason, given the improved success rates associated with egg freezing; women diagnosed with thyroid cancer should be considered candidates for this fertility preserving procedure prior to RAI treatment.
- Higher exposure to certain common chemicals associated with early onset of menopause—A new investigation found that women that were exposed to certain cleaning products, personal care items and specific pesticides tended to begin menopause two to four years earlier than their unexposed peers. They were looking specifically at specific chemicals like PCB’s and phthalates that have been linked to ovarian toxicity in previous research studies. This should further enhance your awareness of the potential negative impact of these unnecessary hormone disruptors and promote more careful selection of what products you use on a regular basis.
- Bisphenol-A (BPA) exposure during pregnancy may predispose to subsequent health risks after birth—There is a growing awareness that metabolic challenges during fetal development may increase health risks during adulthood. A new study has demonstrated that BPA can cause oxidative damage during pregnancy which is considered a precursor to conditions like subsequent heart disease or diabetes during adulthood. BPA is in a large number of products including plastic water bottles, canned food liners and cash register receipts. As more manufacturers continue to phase out products that contain BPA; pregnant women may want to take steps to avoid these chemicals to reduce their child’s future health risk.
- Drinking soda may be linked to early onset of puberty—A new study found that over consumption of sugary beverages may be triggering earlier onset of menstrual cycles in young girls. This was a well defined observational study performed on over 5500 girls during a 5 year follow up. The risk associated with two daily sugary beverages was independent of their weight, activity level or the remainder of their diet. More reason to avoid these unnecessary hormonal calories is their impact upon developing hormone levels.
- Corn syrup may be more toxic than table sugar—A study performed on mice recently demonstrated that when a portion of daily calories were supplied from corn syrup rather than table sugar; the mice had a shorter life expectance and a higher rate of reproductive problems. This negative health impact seemed to greatest on the female mice for reasons that are not fully understood. Although we are uncertain if this will be true in people, its best to avoid foods that contain corn syrup until further studies are available.