The ‘Dirty Dozen’ of Cancer-Causing Chemicals

Scientists at the Environmental Working Group published a list of the 12 chemicals that have been most prevalently linked to cancer in numerous research studies. The list encompasses bisphenol A, atrazine, organophosphate pesticides, dibutyl phthalate, lead, mercury, per- or polyfluorochemicals (PFC), phthalates, diethlyhexyl phthalate, polybrominated diphenyl ethers, triclosan and nonylphenol.

The scientists suggest that consumers can reduce their exposure to each of these chemicals by avoiding plastics marked with “PC” (polycarbonates) or the recycling number 7 mark, polyvinyl chloride (PVC) plastics in food packaging, PFC-treated wrappers on food and other products, lead paints, mercuryladen seafoods, phthalates-containing fragrances and plastics, foam products made before 2005, foreign antibacterial soaps, and detergents and paints with nonylphenol. Other proactive measures include drinking only filtered water when in agricultural areas and purchasing organic foods.

The researchers contend, “Given that we live in a sea of chemicals, it makes sense to begin reducing exposures to ones we know are bad actors.”

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