Herbicides and your health – By Dr. Holly

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Dr. Holly
Dr. Holly
Dr. Holly

Atrazine is the second most commonly used herbicide in the US. It was introduced in 1958 and banned in Europe in 2004 but still used in the US and Canada. It is one of the most frequently detected pesticide in surface and well water. The only pesticide studied more than Atrazine is DDT!!

What is the issue?

Well, governments like Health Canada, classify it as a Group III compound meaning it is “possibly carcinogenic to humans”. But research has shown that it has a huge impact on:

  • Marine life
  • Alligators
  • Turtles
  • Frogs
  • So what about humans?

Testing of the Missisquoi National Wildlife Refuge shows that 85% of the Male fish are carrying eggs?

So Atrazine isn’t just affecting cancers but it is also affecting reproductive systems!! In fact, if we focus on fish for a moment, 37 different species of fish are now known to be feminized – this contributes to issues like: sterility, immune dysfunction, and thus infection, disease and die-offs.

Does Atrazine only affect fish? No! In fact the EPA risk assessment determined that it may cause reproductive harm to: mammals, fish and birds. Further that the level of concern was nearly 200-fold using real world scenarios for mammals!!

Okay, so what about humans? Well, research indicates that Atrazine is linked to:

  • cancers: non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, hairy-cell leukemia, ovarian, thyroid
  • abnormal birth defects: for instance, gastroschsis (intestines stick outside of the body)
  • impaired male sexual development, particularly penis development
  • insulin resistance/weight gain predecessors to a diabetic profile
  • menstrual irregularities
  • femininity in males: from “man boobs” to low sex drive to inability to reproduce

Are the males turning females just due to the herbicide? No! It is actually due to several synthetic, man made components:

  • Birth control pills – varying levels of estrogen that can cause POC and developmental issues
  • Bisphenol a (BPA) – a compound used in plastic; also linked to heart disease, diabetes, obesity, premature ejaculation and other issues
  • Atrazine (inhibits production of testosterone and increases estrogen production)
  • Diethylstilbestrol (DES) – a synthetic estrogen compound
  • Dioxin & dioxin like compounds – highly toxic compound used in herbicide production & an industrial by-product; they are POPs (persistent organic pollutants); stored in fat cells
  • Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) – over 200 different chlorinated compounds
  • DDT – still used in India, China, Korea, etc so be careful where your food is grown!!
  • Phthlates – used in plastics creating durability & flexibility & personal care products
  • Perchlorate – rocket fuel found in food products & also competes with nutrients like iodine
  • Parabens – used in personal hygiene products
  • Aresenic – found in poultry, rice, Brussel sprouts, dark meat fish, beer & wine, cigarettes
  • Lead – found in vaccinations/immunizations, cigarettes, most foods, plumbing,
  • Mercury – found in dental amalgams, vaccinations/immunizations – yes, still!!

What is the common factor in all of these? Estrogenic compounds OR compounds that affect estrogen production in the body. Pseudo estrogens, which are also growth hormones, get into our bodies and upset the natural balance between gender hormones like testosterone and the estrogens. Other compounds interfere with the body’s capacity to make testosterone or provoke the body to make more estrogens.

So while Atrazine is making news today – all of these compounds and numerous others have made news repeatedly throughout the last decade and have been playing havoc on our bodies for even longer.

What will you do to protect your body?

For more information, contact: holly@choicesunlimited.ca

Dr. Holly is a naturopathic doctor that holds a PhD in Psychology and Biochemistry, specializing in balancing mind, body and energy of the system.

Disclaimer: This article provides general information only and is not a substitute for the medical advice of your own doctor or other health care practitioner.