15 December, 2016:
There is increasing interest in chemicals called 'endocrine-disrupting chemicals'. These are chemicals, which may be natural or synthetic, that through exposure interfere with an organism's normal hormone balance. The actions of these chemicals are complex. Some have weak endocrine-like actions and others interfere with the pathways through which our hormones normally work, hence the term 'disrupters'. Endocrine disrupter chemicals include chemicals such as DDT and other pesticides, and plasticizers, such as bisphenol A (BPA) as well as phthalates and parabens.
The Endocrine Society guideline on this issue in 2009  stated that 'The evidence for adverse reproductive outcomes (infertility, cancers, malformations) from exposure to endocrine-disrupting chemicals is strong, and there is mounting evidence for effects on other endocrine systems, including thyroid, neuroendocrine, obesity and metabolism, and insulin and glucose homeostasis.' The Endocrine Society's Second Scientific Statement on Endocrine-Disrupting Chemicals, 2015  recognizes this to be an international problem and that more public awareness as to how to minimize personal exposure, plus more research in this area, is needed. Of considerable concern is that endocrine disrupters can cause epigenetic changes, such as DNA methylation which can be transmitted to offspring .