How to safeguard yourself from environmental toxins:-
The threat: Prostate Cancer.
The problem: About a billion pounds of pesticides are used in the U.S. every year, mostly for agriculture. A 2007 Canadian review connected chemicals in pesticides with prostate-cancer cases.
Why you should care: One in every six men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer.
What you can do: Drink red wine. Researchers found that drinking 4 to 7 glasses of red wine a week cuts your prostate-cancer risk by 48 percent.
The threat: Diabetes
The problem: Korean researchers say PCBs, toxic chemical compounds, may increase your diabetes risk. PCBs are banned, but lingering amounts accumulate in fish.
Why you should care: 10.9 million men — nearly 11 percent of those over age 20 — have diabetes. Not only is the disease itself debilitating, but it doubles your stroke risk.
What you can do: Avoid bluefish and summer flounder, both high in PCBs. Swap in black sea bass, mahi-mahi, or skipjack tuna. Andeat fiber, which cuts diabetes risk by 30 percent.
The threat: Skin Cancer
The problem: According to NASA, a 3 percent drop in ozone levels since the early 1980s has damaged the earth’s built-in layer of UVA and UVB protection.
Why you should care: A million new cases of skin cancer are diagnosed each year, and nearly 11,000 people die of the disease. UVB rays penetrate deep into skin cells, damaging the DNA.
What you can do: Give your favorite summer duds a defensive edge with SunGuard detergent, which increases their UPF (ultraviolet protection factor) to 30. ($2, ritsunguard.com)
The threat: Heart Disease
The problem: University of Michigan researchers found that fine particles released from power plants, cars, and electricity generators are contributing to a host of heart problems.
Why you should care: In 2008, 1.1 million people in the United States will have a heart attack. Nearly half won’t survive.
What you can do: A 2007 Norwegian study found that 300 milligrams a day of anthocyanins, abundant in blueberries, can cut your risk of ticker trouble by as much as 60 percent.