Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Phalates - still not so good for you

Phthalates are chemicals used in a lot of different products - particularly soft rubber products - including IV tubing, sex toys, shower curtains, baby toys, cosmetics, nail polish - you name it.

These chemicals have linked to liver problems, and possibly, to cancer.

Two new studies have been released regarding phthlatates.

The first was a German study on newborns fed thru IV tubing. The tubing was made using phalates. It showed an increase in liver problems. The study was small and certainly not definitive. Not surprisingly, the folks who manufacture stuff with phalates say that it's a bunch of bunk.

Several hospitals have already switched to phalate free tubing.  Because, why take a chance that the phthlates may have a negative impact on a delicate newborn

The next study is where it gets really interesting. There have been concerns about the effects of phalates on the reproductive system. Especially on testosterone based reproductive systems.

Phalates can disrupt androgens. Certain phalates can lower testosterone levels. In other words, they can have an effect on the development of a fetal reproductive system resulting in:
...irreversible demasculinisation and malformations of sex organs among male offspring.
Not sexy words.

In our chemically based society, we experience multiple exposure to anti-androgens from multiple sources including pesticides, beauty products and certain rubber materials. Some scientists in Denmark, decided to investigate what kind of effect these multiple exposures can have on the sexual development of a rat.

They found:
Strikingly, the effect of combined exposure to the selected chemicals...was synergistic, and the observed responses were greater than would be predicted from the toxicities of the individual chemicals.
These results were found even when each of the chemical exposures was at a dosage equal to a no-observed-adverse-effect-level (NOAEL). But the combination of these "safe" dosages resulted in a noticable effect on fetal sexual development.

In other words, even though each individual dosage was "safe", the combined exposures resulted in a noticible impact on external sex characteristics.

Why the hell do you care? Did you see the part about phthlates in sex toys? 

Adult bodies are dramatically different than developing fetal bodies. It is possible (but I'd posit not likely) that exposure to phalates has no effect on the adult body. So maybe we don't need to worry about it. Or maybe we do. Especially if the person is pregnant. In which case, using a sex toy that contains phthlates may expose the fetus to these potentially damaging chemicals.

Pregnant or not, it just doesn't seem smart to take a chance by using sex toys with phthlates.  Especially when there are plenty of options of other materials that are body safe.  And last longer.

Sex toys that have phthalates in them may be cheaper. Sometimes purchasing higher quality toys isn't a financial option. Using condoms on your toys can lower any risk significantly.  But,
saving your pennies and purchasing a higher quality toy is always worth it. 

So, buy phalate free sex toys. Avoid that weird sex toy smell. Stick with products that you believe are safe.

And buy your toys from folks that care about what the toys are made of. Places like Sugar, or the Smitten Kitten, or Self Serve or....

Click here for a link to a PDF of the study: Synergistic Disruption of External Male Sex Organ Development by a Mixture of Four Antiandrogens


broady said...

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Hey what u know about this
tengen company? Im hearing they have some good stuff.

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