Chemical in PVC and Household Dust May Induce Obesity

Exposure to the synthetic chemical tributyltin (TBT) disrupts hormone function and may cause the accumulation of total body fat, as well as fat deposits in the liver. The potential for these effects is greatest during childhood.

“Early life exposure” to TBT makes a person more likely to gain fat and increases his or her chance of becoming obese, according to research. Because of this, TBT has been characterized as an obesogen.[1. http://news.uci.edu/press-releases/fetal-exposure-to-pvc-plastic-chemical-linked-to-obesity-in-offspring/]

What is Tributyltin (TBT)?

Obesogens are a group of chemicals that induce obesity by increasing the body’s number of fat cells and increasing the amount of fat stored within cells. Obesogens typically have the strongest, most damaging effects early in life. TBT was the first chemical classified as an obesogen. Bisphenol A (BPA) is another example of an obesogen, according to studies.

TBT can “leach” into water from PVC tubing. If your home plumbing uses PVC tubing, be sure you arefiltering your tap water for drinking and bathing.

TBT is also commonly found in shower curtains, vinyl flooring, carpet fibers and other household products. Because of this,TBT can work its way into house dust–a potential concern for young children.

Originally, TBT was used as an ingredient in paint for marine vessels. Its purpose was to prevent barnacles, bacteria and algae from growing along the hulls of ships, which helped to reduce fuel costs. However, TBT permeated the ocean water, resulting in contaminated seafood and unnatural developments in other sea creatures.

Eventually, TBT was determined to cause mutations in sea snails, oysters and even whales. It was globally banned from ocean use in 2008.

Extreme effects, similar to those found in sea snails, have not been identified in humans. At least one study, however, has suggested that extremely high doses of TBT could cause the development of cancer (specifically, pituitary gland tumors).

Studies Have Shown

A study involving rats has shown that prenatal exposure to doses of TBT–equivalent to the average amount a person could encounter on a daily basis–could cause an increased instance of obese offspring.

More troubling, though, is that obesity was also prevalent in the initial test rats’ “grandchildren” and “great-grandchildren” despite the fact that these new generations of rats were never exposed to TBT. These findings further suggest a strong relationship between bodily toxicity and the body’s creation and storage of fat cells.[2. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/01/130115090217.htm]

While these findings have yet to be studied in human subjects, it should be noted that TBT is known to be “moderately to slightly toxic to mammals.” [3. http://pmep.cce.cornell.edu/profiles/extoxnet/pyrethrins-ziram/tributyltin-ext.html] When inhaled or consumed, TBT can disrupt thyroid and pituitary functions, decrease the body’s resistance to infection, damage the reproductive and central nervous systems.

Understanding the potential hazards of toxins like TBT is crucial to regaining control of your hormones and preventing age-related weight gain.

Protecting Your Family

Take steps to prevent unnecessary weight gain. Toxins like TBT are fat soluble, which means they hide within fat cells. The more fatty deposits, the more places for toxins to hide.

Safe, regular detoxification is an essential aspect of any weight-loss plan. While quality nutrition and high-intensity surge training can supplement efforts to detoxify, a more direct solution is often needed to reestablish normal hormone levels throughout the body.

What You Can Do

Think detoxification is for you, but aren’t sure where to start? Look up your nearest Maximized Living Wellness doctor.

All Maximized Living doctors are equipped to help you reach and maintain your ideal weight through quality nutrition, exercise and detoxification.