Popping a pill a day to keep a baby at bay has far-reaching consequences. Recent findings published by the British Medical Journal Open indicate birth control pills may be contaminating our water and food supplies.
Just as growth hormones and antibiotics fed to commercially raised livestock find their way to the dinner plate, women's birth control hormones can live in the food supply too. Choosing organic food sources or tending to a home garden probably won't help either since plants absorb moisture from contaminated ground water.
Ultimately, hormones added to the food supply increase health problems. Men are at a higher risk of prostate cancer in areas where the majority of women use oral contraception, according to the study.
To deflect the problem, women should opt for more environmentally friendly methods of birth control, such as inter-uterine devices. And men living in densely populated cities should ask their physicians about prostate cancer screenings.
"Although the amount (of estrogen) one woman would secrete is minimal, when millions of women take it for a long period of time, it may have an environmental effect," explained Dr. David Margel, researcher and uro-oncology fellow at the University of Toronto.
Will more forms of cancer, autoimmune diseases and chronic illnesses get added to the list of hormone-related diseases? Share thoughts in the comments below.