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Food packaging chemical found to increase onset of chronic diseaseA study of 1500 South Australian men found a link between several chronic diseases and phthalates – a group of chemicals used widely in food packaging.
The results, which have been published in the international journal Environmental Research, detected phthalates in the urine samples of 99.6 per cent of men in the study aged 35 years and over.
“We found that the prevalence of cardiovascular disease, type-2 diabetes and high blood pressure increased among those men with higher total phthalate levels,” said the study’s senior author Associate Professor Zumin Shi.
Shi, from the University of Adelaide’s Adelaide School of Medicine and the Freemason’s Foundation Centre for Men’s Health, and a member of SAHMRI’s Nutrition & Metabolism theme, said the study adjusted for subjects who were overweight and obese – and it still pointed to phthalates as a link to disease.
“If we compare the highest quota with the lowest quota of phthalates, the increase is around 80 per cent for cardiovascular disease and diabetes,” he said. “It’s 15 per cent for hypertension.”
“While further research is required, reducing environmental phthalates exposure where possible, along with the adoption of healthier lifestyles, may help to reduce the risk of chronic disease,” he said.
Publication date: 8/7/2017
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