Every minute, the equivalent of a garbage truck filled with plastic is dumped into the oceans. But plastic is not just present in our oceans, we find it also in the water we drink. And the worst is that microplastics were even found in women placentas. You know how dangerous plastics are for marine species, but just imagine how harmful it must be for babies that are not even born yet.
A danger for women’s health
Do you remember Emily Penn, the woman we mentioned before who co-founded the eXXpedition? Well, she studied the impact of (micro)plastics on women’s health and their toxicity. Indeed, in 2014, after reading a study about the fact that we ingest microplastics, she went for a test to see if the toxic components used in plastic production were in her blood. “Out of 35 products tested, 29 were present [in her blood]”, recalls Emily Penn. Many of them are endocrine disruptors that mimic hormones and so destabilize the body’s chemical balance. It’s alarming, especially for pregnant women, who can also transmit these pollutants to the baby at birth.
She thought: “Wow! It’s a women-specific issue”, “Why not approach it with a women-only team?”. Hence, the eXXpedition composed of 300 women.
An unknown danger?
Tiny or big, plastic pieces release chemicals that are dangerous for our health, such as bisphenol-A. They eventually make their way into our oceans and are swallowed by fishes for instance and end up in our plates.
The thing is, scientific research on the impact of plastic on women’s health is pretty rare. For example, some women may suffer from endometriosis, a painful disease, which is still too little known. It’s the reason why, we can say that microplastics are an “unknown danger” because there aren’t a lot of studies about its harmful impact on women’s health.
How to do beterre?
Small steps are part of the solution. On our scale, bringing our coffee mug, bamboo utensils, mesh bag or buying food in bulk are great habits that make a difference.
But, more importantly be careful about the products you buy and the cosmetics you use on your skin. You should choose plastic-free brands and opt for green alternatives. And, always make sure that they are perfectly safe for your health and your baby.