Precocious Puberty

19 Oct

I’ve been subscribing to Dr. Al Sears’ newsletter for a while. If you haven’t read his books, Doctors Heart Cure or Rediscovering Your Native Fitness: PACE, I suggest you do so. All of his claims are based on sound (and non-compromised) research. Believe me, I’ve done some investigating into his references. There are no ties to big money or big Pharma. But this article is about something specific. Today’s newsletter talked about children and the recent trend with early onset puberty. I talked about this phenomena briefly in my article about Dr. Leonard Sax’s book. Here is just more evidence of why we need to watch what we put into our bodies and strive for a more natural lifestyle.

But enough from me. I’ve gotten permission to repost his article here:

A Dangerous Game with Our Children

The other day I was picking up my nine-year-old son, DS from school and noticed some of the girls in his class were already wearing bras. My patients have been reporting the same thing to me more and more. Nowadays, some children are beginning to develop sexually as early as seven.1 What’s wrong with that?

I have reason for concern over the hundreds of unnatural additives and pollutants in our food, water, air, and so many everyday household products. These “enviro-toxins” disrupt normal hormone levels in the body, causing weight gain, fatigue, infertility, and other serious health problems.

Now a growing body of evidence in the US and Britain suggests that these chemicals are wreaking havoc in the lives of our kids. They’re the main cause behind the alarming trend toward increasing “precocious puberty” – little girls prematurely growing breasts, pubic hair, and going through all the other confusing changes that come with puberty.

And, research published in the Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine found that American boys are also hitting puberty earlier than in the past. A significant number of boys as young as eight showed signs of premature genital development.2 A study in the UK found that about one in 14 eight-year-old British boys had developed pubic hair, compared to one in 150 boys in the last generation.3

In a major study of 17,000 American girls, seven percent of Caucasians girls and a shocking 27 percent of African-American girls were either growing breasts or pubic hair by age seven. Even more upsetting, precocious puberty was seen in three percent of African-Americans and one percent of Caucasians by age three!4

The Dangers of “Growing Up Too Fast”

What are the consequences of this bizarre phenomenon? Studies have shown that girls who go through puberty too soon also:

  • Have sex earlier
  • Run greater risk of pregnancy
  • Suffer from behavioral problems
  • Have a lower IQ
  • Are more likely to drink, smoke and
  • Are more likely to commit suicide

They’re also more likely to develop breast and ovarian cancer later in life, and to become infertile.5

In boys, precocious puberty can lead to more aggressive, violent behavior, learning disabilities, and greater risk of drug and alcohol abuse. As they mature, they’re at increased risk for testicular cancer and low sperm counts.6

The Mainstream Response: Dangerous Drugs and Denial

An increasing number of experts agree with what I’ve been saying all along: The culprits are industrially produced hormones and chemical compounds. Most come from the food supply and household products, including plastics, cleaning solvents, vinyl flooring, even make-up and hairspray.

Unfortunately, while the medical community has finally acknowledged this problem, their response is to put our children on yet another endocrine disrupting chemical. Lupron, their drug to treat precocious puberty blocks production of your own natural sex hormones and has 265 known side effects, including convulsions and cancer.

A separate physician’s network has taken another wrongheaded approach to the problem, claiming that “precocious puberty” simply needs to be considered “normal.” In other words, they’re just defining down the right stage for the onset of puberty. This is just denial.7

Meanwhile, the US government hasn’t taken any steps to protect the public from these dangerous enviro-toxins and the FDA allows cattle breeders to pump animals with hormones, steroids and synthetic growth agents. All this stuff winds up in your body.

One researcher found hormone levels in industrially raised beef were three hundred times greater than in normal or grass-fed beef.8 The same goes for the poultry industry, which uses synthetic proprietary feeds to make chickens grow mature and fat faster.

Household products can contain pthalates (pronounced THAL-ates) and bisphenol-A. These man-made chemicals have structures that look strikingly similar to estrogen. In Europe, industry’s been banned from using phthalates, but they’re still legal in the US.

Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) is another common estrogen mimic. Industries use it to make Teflon for cookware and Gore-Tex for outerwear. The CDC recently tested for the presence of phthalates and PFOA in the general population. The results were sobering. Every person tested – without exception – had both chemicals in their bloodstream.9

9 Simple Steps to Protect Yourself and Your Children Right Now

So what can you do to protect your child from this public health nightmare?

  • Try to make your diet as organic as possible. Free-range organic chickens and grass-fed beef are free of most toxins. Small wild-caught fish are safe, although some larger fish contain heavy metals like mercury. Wild salmon cod, halibut, mackerel, and sardines are your best bet.
  • If you don’t have access to organic meats, trim the fat off. Many of the worst chemicals are stored in the fat of the animal.
  • Eat organic fruits and vegetables whenever possible. Be sure to wash those that aren’t organic thoroughly, or peel off the skin.
  • Try to avoid foods packaged in plastic, or remove the packaging as soon as you get home.
  • Buy a high-quality water filter. Pesticides find their way into many municipal water systems.
  • Don’t let your children chew on plastic toys. Better yet, buy toys made of unfinished wood or other natural fibers.
  • Avoid non-stick or plastic cookware. Stainless steel, cast iron, and glassware are all safe.
  • Buy household products made from natural and organic ingredients. These are widely available in stores and online.
  • Purify the air in your home with plants. Common household plants can filter dangerous chemicals from new carpets or curtains. For instance, Boston ferns can detoxify 1,000 micrograms of formaldehyde from the air in one hour.10


1 Herman-Giddens et al, “Secondary sexual characteristics and menses in young girls” Pediatrics, 1997, 99(4):505-512.
2 Herman-Giddens et al, “Secondary Sexual Characteristics in Boys,” Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine, 155(2001):1022-1028.
3 Golding et al, “ALSPAC Study Team,” Paediatric Perinatal Epidemiology, 2001, 15(1):74-87.
4 Herman-Giddens et al, “Secondary sexual characteristics and menses in young girls seen in office practice: a study from the Pediatric Research Office Settings Network,” Pediatrics, 1997, 99(4):505-512.
5 Willett W., “The search for the causes of breast and colon cancer,” Nature, 338(1989):389-94
6 Herman-Giddens et al, “Secondary Sexual Characteristics in Boys: Estimates From the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey III, 1988–1994,” Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine, 155(2001):1022-1028.
8 Epstein, The Breast Cancer Prevention Program, New York: Macmillan, 1997, p. 193.
9 Weise E. “Are Our Products Our Enemy?” USA Today. Aug 2, 2005.


4 Responses to “Precocious Puberty”

  1. Alicia October 20, 2007 at 1:10 pm #

    Thank you for bringing such a purely insightful article to my attention! The information on environmental toxins is much needed and the 9 simple steps definitely encourage me to get busy making changes for my own children’s sake.

  2. Károly Domonyi October 22, 2007 at 7:06 am #


    Keep up the good work. I enjoy reading your blog. It is great to find someone who can find the fun things in life!

    I wish you the best in 2007.

    Please take a look at my websites as well. I look forward to developing a friendship and networking with you. Let me know if there is something I can do to assist you with your business.

    With Regards,

    Karoly Domonyi,

  3. intrepidideas November 7, 2007 at 12:38 am #

    Truly enlightening post. I must admit…. I’m concerned thanks for the very complete and informative post.


  4. rudibela November 16, 2007 at 6:40 pm #

    Great post. I just have to add, that my family has gone step beyond…
    We do not use any of the heavy chemicals. Instead, we use essential oils to clean our home or as insecticides. We also use natural cosmetics. Our lifestyle is more expensive, but health is priceless.

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