Oral Contraceptives and the Environment

Are you concerned about the environment? If you are and you happen to be using “the pill,” you may not realize that every time you urinate, you are passing EDCs into the water system.
What are EDCs?
Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals (EDCs) are synthetic chemicals that interfere with naturally produced hormones, the body's chemical messengers, that control how an organism develops and functions. EDCs affect humans and animals.

At Yurika, Cramp Free Naturally we believe that avoiding synthetic chemicals as much as possible is in the best interest of ourselves and the environment. Here is some information that may help you make a more informed choice about your period pain solution.

Pharmaceuticals and the Environment
Recent monitoring studies have detected low levels of a wide range of pharmaceuticals in soils, surface waters and groundwaters.⁣ The scope of this problem is not to be underestimated. More than 10 million women in the USA alone use oral contraceptives, which eventually find their way into the environment.

The Environmental Side Effects of Medication 
EMBO - The European Molecular Biology Organization

Synthetic Estrogen & Cancer
The main ingredient in oral contraceptives is synthetic estrogen, which contaminates natural waterways by altering fish reproductive systems and damaging ecosystem dynamics. It also affects reproductive development in both domestic and wild animals.

Given that published evidence establishes a causal relationship between synthetic estrogens in the environment and breast cancer in women and prostate cancer in men, there is growing concern regarding the entry of synthetic estrogens into the human food chain.

To punctuate the seriousness of this problem, an article on estrogenic pollutants and breast cancer in the peer reviewed scientific journal Genes, reveals “more than 70% of human breast cancers are ERα-positive and estrogen-dependent, and their development and growth are not only influenced by endogenous estrogens but also likely by environmental estrogen-like endocrine disrupters.

Again, endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) interfere with normal hormonal processes through multiple molecular pathways. Researchers have been looking for ways to neutralize synthetic estrogen before it leaves municipal water treatment facilities and ends up in the rivers and seas. So far adding hydrogen peroxide (plus one other agent) to waste water is showing the most promising results.

Many EDCs are also xenoestrogens or “estrogen mimickers” which stimulate the the same response in the body that naturally released estrogen would. As well, antibiotics can also precipitate an estrogenic effect. Antibiotics are also found in domestic and industrial wastewater, as well as in non-range beef and poultry. An important result of all this estrogen exposure is early puberty in girls, with a host of physiological and psychological complications. Clinical endocrinologist Louise Greenspan calls it “a toxic milieu” and suggests practicing the "precautionary principle," — if you're not sure about it, find a safer alternative, in this case avoiding estrogen mimickers.

If we also factor in the controversial practice of hormone replacement therapy for managing menopause, we find that exposure to synthetic estrogen is a persistent concern for girls and women in all stages of life. Yet, the downsides suggest the risk vs rewards ratio is very unattractive.

Off Label Use of “The Pill”
While oral contraceptives do demonstrate a 91% rate of effectiveness at preventing pregnancy, a Washington Post article reveals the majority of women also use “the pill” for off label purposes, primarily for menstrual pain.
Combined oral contraceptives have long been used off-label for menstrual cramps, but a Cochrane review found only limited evidence for efficacy. Further, the World Health Organization lists oral contraceptives as a class 1 cancer causing agent, posing the question, why is this hazardous drug even prescribed at all.
Given that oral contraceptives contribute a present threat to ecosystem dynamics; pose a high risk for cancer; indirectly complicate puberty in girls; and most women receive no pain relief for menstrual cramps, there are very good reasons to practice the “precautionary principle” — that is, find a safer more effective alternative.

Related research from 49th Degree // Stop It - avoid toxic food additives


Yurika is the only Health Canada certified natural solution for menstrual cramps and associated symptoms. Yurika is a botanical compound, 100% organic, risk free and biodegradable.
Written by Rex Chequer at 49th Degree Health Solutions Inc.

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