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Look – A Wolf!


The Boy Who Cried Wolf is one of Aesop’s Fables from over two thousand years ago. As the reader will know, the point is that if people worry needlessly about trivial threats or illusory ones they will under-react when a genuine threat emerges.

Dear reader, you need to worry about a chemical contaminant which is present in food and drinking water. This pollutant, or rather class of pollutants, is known as EDC: Endocrine Disrupting Compounds, and they are leaching out of certain plastics products. These EDCs are not in themselves plastics; they are plasticisers – additives to render the finished item more flexible. Upon leaching into our food chain they disrupt people’s hormones such as testosterone and oestrogen by mimicking them or blocking them.

In living memory dangerous substances such as asbestos and lead were in insulation products and in petrol. No more! When finally the evidence of toxicity was overwhelming the outcry in the press and the public caused the politicians to strictly regulate these dangerous substances. EDCs are worse, and you will shortly understand why.

Here’s the money quote: there is reason to believe that the obesity crisis and the fertility crisis have a single cause: EDCs. Two such are called bisphenol A (BPA) and phthalates.

The next hour of your precious time may be among the most important in your life.

Regarding obesity, may I pass you over for 18 minutes to Professor Tim Lobstein. YouTube:- “… we found that people with high levels [of EDCs] in their bodies can have twice or three times the prevalence of obesity compared with people with lower levels.”

Regarding human fertility I would like to send you to Dr. Shanna Swan for 25 minutes. YouTube:- “… sperm counts have halved since 1973….. all countries are declining …. below one child per couple in East Asia…I like to call [EDCs] hormone hackers….. they hack the hormone system…. they’re in our daily lives in huge numbers… when the mother had higher levels of phthalates…. male child less completely masculinized… we already satisfy several of the criteria for endangerment which is a step way before extinction….”

These two scientific fields are poor relations compared to the vast resources devoted to climate change and pandemics which are touted as existential threats to the human race and to all of nature. Meanwhile, a genuine existential threat is at our door – a great slavering beast. If it looks like a wolf, howls like a wolf and bites like a wolf then, hey, c’mon now……. it’s a wolf!

With the politicians asleep on the job, what can the average citizen do to mitigate the risk to his or her nearest and dearest? As a first step, which may (to quote Neil Armstrong) also be a giant leap, sanitise your house. Wherever possible, get rid.

The table below is my first rough stab at a Dirty List.

Plastic Abbreviation Clean/Dirty Example
Polyvinyl chloride PVC Dirty PVC cling film – the cheap stuff
Epoxy resin Dirty White lining inside steel tomato cans
Polycarbonate PC Dirty Safety glasses; hard clear drinks bottle
Polyethylene HDPE LDPE Clean Cheap freezer tubs, bags, wheelie bins
Polypropylene PP Clean Storage bins, condiment bottles
Acrylonitrile BS ABS Clean Lego bricks
Polyamide (nylon) PA Clean Power tools
PE terephthalate PET Clean Bottled spring water, condiment bottles

The plastic identification triangles for PP and PE

We’ll finish with two telling quotes:

The Endocrine Society (Est 1916): Where We Stand On EDCs.

“Alarmed by discoveries in new research”… “Traditional chemical risk assessment assumes a simple, linear relationship where lower dose or exposure commonly confers lower toxicity. However, endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) call for a new paradigm that acknowledges:

  • Complex mixtures of compounds are being found in nature
  • Possibility that low level environmental exposure may still have significant and/or long-term biological impact. In certain instances there may be no “safe dose”.
  • Heightened vulnerability to EDCs at certain life stages, such as prenatal. in utero, and adolescence.
  • Potential for certain EDCs to affect individuals across generations. This transgenerational impact is a growing area of science and medicine.

The European Food Safety Authority: “Bisphenol A in food is a health risk” 19 Apr 2023

“The newly established TDI (tolerable daily input) is 20,000 times lower.”
This TDI is “the amount that can be ingested daily over a lifetime without presenting an appreciable health risk”. Since April this stands at 0.2 nanograms per kilogram of body weight. The above was not a misprint: the citizen’s safe limit of BPA has been reduced by a whopping 20,000-fold. Reassured? Don’t be. BPA is but one of these dangerous chemicals and the new regulation does not cover phthalates or other bisphenols.

Scare stories are often big on assertion and small on evidence. Dear reader, treat the above as merely a heads-up. Do your own research. The motto of The Royal Society (Britain’s foremost scientific association) puts it in a nutshell: nullius in verba.

One final note on personal choice: the North Korean leader Kim Il Sung has this week issued a tearful exhortation to his country’s young women to have more babies, their birth rate having fallen to 1.8 per couple. He assumes that this lies within their power, just like those who reckon that fat people simply lack self discipline. Are we masters of our own fate? Yes we are. Until we ain’t.