In an article published on October 1, 2016 in the peer-reviewed journal Environmental Health Perspectives (EHP) reporter Wendee Nicole informs about an EHP-study published in April 2016 showing that fast food consumption is a likely source of exposure to phthalates (FPF reported). Researchers Ami R. Zota and colleagues from the George Washington University, U.S. analyzed data from the U.S. National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES 2003-2010) and found that fast food consumers had higher urinary phthalate levels than non-consumers. The researchers suggest that polyvinyl chloride (PVC) tubing, vinyl gloves used for food handling, and food packaging are possible sources of phthalate contamination in fast food.
The association between fast food consumption and phthalate levels was most pronounced among non-hispanic black consumers, Nicole reports. According to Zota this fact “is an important contribution to the environmental justice field since it suggests a potential connection between neighborhood environments, food choices, and phthalates exposure.” Nicole explains that “environmental justice research has found that minority populations often have greater environmental exposures to potentially harmful agents than other groups.”
Wendee Nicole (October 1, 2016). “Phthalates in fast food: A potential dietary source of exposure.” Environmental Health Perspectives 124(10):A191.
Zota, A.R. et al. (2016). “Recent fast food consumption and bisphenol A and phthalates exposures among the U.S. population in NHANES, 2003–2010.” Environmental Health Perspectives (published online April 13, 2016).