German study finds "previously unknown" chemicals in bottled water
Don't you find that the same drink consumed from a plastic bottle versus a glass or aluminium can has a different taste? I certainly do!
Chemicals in bottled water
A German study published in August 2013 has now proven the presence of additional "previously unknown" chemicals and in doing so raised serious questions about the science and, more importantly, the regulation to date.
The are collective known as "Endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs)". EDCs are man-made compounds which can interfere with hormone signalling and thereby adversely affecting human health. By interfering with the organism’s complex hormone signalling endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) might adversely affect development and reproduction.
Moreover, recent research suggests an implication of EDCs in cancer, cardiovascular, and metabolic disorders. While research generates an ever-growing list of potential EDCs, few compounds, namely Bisphenol A (BPA) and phthalates, attract particular scientific attention and public controversy. Used in a vast variety of consumer products, these chemicals are ubiquitously detected in the environment as well as in human samples. With numerous studies documenting adverse effects, public health concerns have led to a voluntary or regulatory removal of BPA and phthalates in some products (e.g., baby bottles, toys) and countries.
Recent reports provide evidence for the presence of EDCs in commercially available bottled water, including steroid receptor agonists and antagonists.
However, since these findings are based on biological data the causative chemicals remain unidentified and, therefore, inaccessible for toxicological evaluation.
The recent German study comes from Martin Wagner and Jorg Oehlmann of the Goethe University Frankfurt, Frankfurt am Main, and Michael Schlusener and Thomas Ternes of the German Federal Institute of Hydrology.
"We detected significant antiestrogenicity in 13 of 18 products. 16 samples were antiandrogenic inhibiting the androgen receptor by up to 90%. Nontarget chemical analysis revealed that out of 24520 candidates present in bottled water one was consistently correlated with the antagonistic activity. We confirmed the identity and biological activity of DEHF and additional isomers of dioctyl fumarate and maleate using authentic standards. Since DEHF is antiestrogenic but not antiandrogenic we conclude that additional, yet unidentified EDCs must contribute to the antagonistic effect of bottled water. Applying a novel approach to combine biological and chemical analysis this is the first study to identify so far unknown EDCs in bottled water. Notably, dioctyl fumarates and maleates have been overlooked by science and regulation to date."
The key point about this research is that it has provided a new way to detect EDCs which had previously been ignored and can now open up a new way for the directed identification of EDCs in beverages, foodstuff, and consumer products which, in the end, will help providing a more holistic picture of human exposure to EDCs.
The key question now is, who is doing anything about it? I assure you it isn't the bottled water industry which represents some of the most unethical businesses around.
For a link to the original research - click here