Environmental Toxins

The Problem with Plastic And its Effect on Our Health

Healthy tomatoes in an unhealthy plastic container

Albert Einstein once said, “The Environment is everything that isn’t me.” And so, for decades society has changed their proposition on the importance of saving the Earth’s nature and environment by reducing the amount of rubbish that is tossed in the earth’s fresh waters and land. Have you ever heard of the “triple-R” phrase, “Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle”? This phrase represents the triangular recycling logo that is plastered on every trashcan inside any restaurant, grocery store or public area.

The idea of recycling originated in Athens, Greece in 500BC, but only became mainstream in 1972 when the first recycling mill was built in Conshohocken, Pennsylvania. Today, people repeatedly recycle items such as glass bottles, tin, aluminum cans, cardboard, and plastic to save the Earth from continuous pollution. Out of all of them, plastic products such as containers and water bottles are often repeatedly recycled and reused. While this was done with good intentions to improve the Earth and our local communities, is it truly fulfilling its purpose or is it adding to the separate issue of environmental toxicity?

More particularly, the constant use of plastic seems to be posing a big threat to individuals. Recent studies have revealed that out of 34 different plastic products, 74% of the tested products came out as toxic¹. At LifeWorks Wellness Center, patients that suffer from chronic inflammation have been exposed to prevalent environment toxicity with plastic being one of the common elements found in their system. Because of this, we often discourage them from using plastic products and encourage other materials such as stainless steel bottles and jars. Nonetheless, many wonder why plastic seems to have garnered such a poor reputation over the years.

The Real Issue with Plastic

For years, people believed that plastic only posed a threat to animals and plants in the environment. While this statement remains true, constant human exposure to the element has also had dangerous effects. There are three categories of harmful chemicals that are associated with plastic:

  1. byproducts of manufacturing
  2. the ingredients that it is produced with
  3. the chemicals that it absorbs from external sources

Many of these chemicals are categorized as pollutants and are even regulated by government agencies due to their negative health effects. These include heavy metals, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH), Bisphenol A (BPA), pesticides, phthalates, and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). Unfortunately, plastic production seems to continue in the manufacturing industry creating our water bottles, toys, water pipes, bags, sports equipment, tools, and many other daily products that we don’t realize may be affecting our health in a negative way.

How Does it Affect Our Health?

Over the past few years, public health experts expressed ongoing concerns over the health effects of plastic exposure¹. Certain chemicals found in plastic such as BPA have shown a connection to neurological disorders, metabolic disease, infertility, obesity and cancer. Meanwhile, phthalates can disrupt the endocrine system, the reproductive system, alter the sperm count in males and damage the brain developments in unborn children. Constant plastic exposure can also add on to the toxic buildup within one’s system and cause inflammation to grow and spread. Eventually, this will convert into something more serious such as autoimmune disease, cardiovascular disease, respiratory issues and even cancer.

How to Treat Plastic Toxicity

When people become sick, their first thought is, “it’s just the common cold” or “it’s just allergies, it’ll go away.”However, when their symptoms persist for weeks, this is often a huge sign that there is something more serious going on in the body. If they continue untreated, it’s likely that autoimmune disease or other chronic conditions can develop. Most don’t know where the sicknesses come from, and sadly, conventional doctors will only prescribe antibiotics that could potentially irritate and worsen the condition.

At LifeWorks Wellness Center, many patients that come in with chronic autoimmune diseases, bacterial infections or other issues have also had inflammation and signs of environmental toxicity in their system. Patients that suffer from plastic toxicity will consult with one of our practitioners to discuss symptoms, medications, medical background, allergies and other concerning conditions. Subsequently, they will go through a testing process that will determine the amount of built-up inflammation caused by the chemicals. From there, practitioners will plan out a thorough detoxification method for patients to follow on a weekly or monthly basis. Detox methods vary from patient-to-patient, however many of the treatments that we offer include:

Additionally, LifeWorks will suggest peptides to treat specific symptoms along with supplements and a dietary change to provide the body with the proper nutrients to strengthen immunity.

If you or someone that you know is experiencing inflammation, environmental toxicity, or are a victim of plastic exposure, please call to schedule an appointment with one of our practitioners at 727-466-6789.

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Helpful Environmental Toxin Resources

  • Environmental Toxins - our complete page on environmental toxins. Learn how environment toxins can affect your life and how to recover from these.
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About Dr. Minkoff

Dr. David Minkoff graduated from the University of Wisconsin Medical School in 1974 and was elected to the “Phi Beta Kappa” of medical schools, the prestigious Alpha Omega Alpha Honors Medical Fraternity for very high academic achievement. He then completed both a Pediatric Residency and a Fellowship in Infectious Disease at the University of California at San Diego. He worked at the University of California and Children’s Hospitals in San Diego as an attending physician in infectious disease while conducting original research on Ribaviron, a broad spectrum anti-viral agent to fight disease. He also co-directed a neo-natal intensive care unit and worked in emergency medicine. In 1992, Dr. Minkoff’s attended a lecture by Dr. Jeffrey Bland, widely considered the father of functional medicine, during which he had a eureka moment, and began pursuing the alternative health field with a vengeance, studying under the most accomplished thought leaders on natural & integrative healing. In 1997 Dr. Minkoff and his wife set up a small clinic to help friends with their medical problems. What began as an experiment blossomed into LifeWorks Wellness Center, one of the most successful clinics for complementary medicine in the United States.