Thursday, December 04, 2008

Extra Weight? It's Not the Pie, It's the Pollutant!

Certain pollutants have been identified that affect gene activity in species from insects to humans. The chemicals activate cellular components known as retinoid X receptors (RXRs). Once switched "on," these RXRs can migrate into the nuclei of cells and switch on genes that cause the growth of fat storage cells and regulate whole body metabolism.

In fact, these recently discovered RXRs have such a significant impact on the body, that compounds that affect a related receptor often associated with RXRs are being used to treat diabetes.

Among the chemicals known to activate RXRs is the pollutant, Tributyltin. The chemical is used as a wood preservative, anti-fouling treatment for boat bottoms, and a pesticide on certain food crops. The pollutant also causes damage to liver and nervous and immune systems in mammals even if the exposure is a very low concentration. The use of the chemical in marine paints is a suspected cause of deafness and beaching behavior in whales.

Pollutants with similar properties are widely used and potentially have the same effect on gene activity, triggering obesity. These chemicals include bisphenol A. Of course, the FDA still considers it safe ...

Guess I will stick to organic pie and store it in a glass container.

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