How Chemicals Change Us
In an article published yesterday in the New York Times, reporter Nicholas D. Kristof writes about the effects of hormone mimicking chemicals, and the ubiquitous role they take in daily life. He discusses the lack of vigilance on the part of the United States Government in protecting consumers from big chemical companies, and the delay in the manifestation of side-effects that make these chemicals hard to trace. Kristof writes:
"Researchers warn that endocrine disruptors can trigger hormonal changes in the body that may not show up for decades. One called DES, a synthetic form of estrogen, was once routinely given to pregnant women to prevent miscarriage or morning sickness, and it did little harm to the women themselves. But it turned out to cause vaginal cancer and breast cancer decades later in their daughters, so it is now banned."
The article points to an important question, begging the question of why precaution is not being taken by the US Government when dealing with substances that have only had limited testing. For the full story, see the article on the New York Times.