Fun Fact Friday: Toxins Impact the Environment Too!

Fun Fact Friday: Toxins Impact the Environment Too!

toxins impact the environment too.

Toxins don't just affect humans. We continually hear all of the bad ways that toxins affect us, from increasing our risk of cancer to reproductive harm to skin issues. But, they also have some pretty significant effects on the environment as well.  Although research is still ongoing regarding how toxins affect the environment, there are some pretty extensive studies out there already talking about plants and animals and how they are negatively impacted by toxins in the everyday products we use. I'll break it down into a few of the more common toxins.

The use of parabens in our everyday products eventually gets into our waterways through showering, washing our hands, cleaning sinks and toilets, and washing our cars. While most of these parabens are filtered out through wastewater treatment plants, not all of them are removed. So many waterways, including our drinking water, can still have trace amounts of parabens in them. Parabens have also been found in some rivers as well. Parabens can bio-accumulate in animals and enough accumulation will eventually impact animals further up the food chain. These parabens affect the immune and reproductive systems of animals.

Phthalates are another endocrine disruptor commonly found in personal care products as another preservative and plasticizer. A study conducted with lab rats revealed a decreased production of estradiol in the female rats. Estradiol impacts the production of reproductive organs. Phthalates also reportedly lowered sperm count in the lab rats. 

Triclosan is commonly found in antibacterial soaps and cleaners. When we use these, they're commonly discharged down the drain or toilet and can eventually make its way into animals. Triclosan contributes to cancer, reproductive and developmental defects, and liver toxicity in animals. 

Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) found in cleaning and personal care products can cause excess algae growth in ponds and waterways. This algae growth inhibits oxygen production, blocks sunlight from reaching aquatic plants, and contributes to the spread of bad bacteria, which can impact plant and animal life. 

That's all for tonight! If you want to learn more about environmental impacts from toxins and haven't already seen it, check out my Fun Fact Friday video either on my Instagram or Facebook. See you all later! :)
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