Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals
Our hormones, produced by the endocrine system, direct almost every function of our bodies, from growth and development to processing everything from fear to sugar. Hormones also act in minute amounts, analogous to a pinch of salt in 32 tons of potato chips. In similar concentrations our hormones shape our fertility, our behavior, our physical and mental development, our intelligence, our metabolism, and our longevity. Hormones are exquisitely powerful molecules that make us who we are.
But exposures to man-made chemicals that can mimic, block, and disrupt our bodies’ natural hormones can lead to life-long health problems. Alarmingly, these substances, called endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs), are found in hundreds of common products, and scientists say that they can cause serious health problems, even at the tiniest doses currently measurable.
When toys, jewelry, lunchboxes and other products posed lead poisoning threats to children, CEH took action. We used cutting-edge science, research and investigations, product testing, legal action, policy advocacy and public pressure to eliminate the use of lead-containing materials in all products for children.
Now we are taking this same approach with products that contain EDCs. Our aim is to eliminate all harmful exposures from EDCs that put our children and families at risk.