EU could save €31 billion health costs if it reduced exposures to hormone disrupting chemicals

Published 18 Jun 2014

Exposure to food and everyday electronic, cosmetic and plastic products containing hormone disrupting chemicals may be costing over €4 billion (£3.2 billion) in the UK and up to €31 billion per year in the European Union (EU), warned the Health and Environment Alliance (HEAL), in a new study launched today.

The report says that spiralling rates of hormone-related disease (also called endocrine disrupting chemicals, or EDCs) may be due to exposure to hormone-mimicking synthetic chemicals found in food, drink and everyday products. It highlights that, if a small portion of hormone-related cancers, diabetes and obesity, and infertility could be avoided by reducing exposure to these chemicals, billions in costs from these diseases and conditions could be saved across the EU and around €4 billion in the UK, the third highest after France and Germany. 

“This new study underlines how the UK and other European governments could potentially save billions in costs on diseases, such as breast cancer, were it to better protect us from exposure to hormone disrupting chemicals. Given the emotional cost that lies behind these figures, failure to do so would not only be financially redundant, but ethically bankrupt,”said Chief Executive of Breast Cancer UK, Lynn Ladbrook.

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