Are organic pollutants causing abdominal obesity?
Organic pollutants may be causing hormone imbalances that contribute to the development of obesity. This is the outcome of a new study, from Taiwan published in the journal PLOS ONE. Researchers were examining the relationship between abdominal obesity, insulin resistance and dioxin, known as a persistent organic pollutant (POP). Rodent studies have shown that dioxin-like organic pollutants may be obesogens. The researchers analysed the data of 2,876 participants and found that those with higher levels of dioxin in their systems from eating contaminated seafood were fatter and more likely to suffer from insulin resistance.
Dioxins are released into the air by a range of industrial processes, some of which are also found in motor vehicles. Recently, more research has been undertaken into the health harms related to these particles, in particular on the endocrine related effects. The researchers hope that this study will help highlight the problem of POPs and will therefore lead to the reduction in exposure to these endocrine disrupting chemicals.