Flame Retardants Linked to Increased Type 2 Diabetes Risk

Flame Retardants and DiabetesNew research published by the American Diabetes Association shows a connection between flame retardants and risk for type 2 diabetes.  According to the Korean study, those who were exposed to higher amounts of PBB-153, a common flame retardant, had twice the risk of diabetes and metabolic disorder than those who had the lowest exposure.

Flame retardants are chemical compounds found in everything from home furnishings to children’s sleepwear.  There are regulations requiring the use of flame retardants as a way to prevent bodily harm in the event of a fire.  The problem is that most chemicals used in this application have safety concerns and some experts argue that the use of flame retardants is a greater risk than the risk of being injured in a fire.

What Can You Do?

It is difficult to completely avoid flame retardant materials in our normal environment.  According to FoodConsumer.org, the main source of exposure is actually through household dust, which is backed up by a study done, stating:

“The high prevalence of these chemicals in foam and the high concentrations measured in dust (as high as 1.8 mg/g), warrant further studies to evaluate potential health effects from dust exposure, particularly for children.”

While you can’t stop dust from collecting in your home, you can invest in a high quality air purifier to pull particles from the air and away from you and your family.  Look for a filter that catches particles as small as .001 microns.

We don’t know if this will help someone who already has diabetes, but it stands to reason that reducing your exposure, even after diagnosis, can bring about improvement and perhaps lessen symptoms.


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