According to a new study, the chemicals found in the dust in your home may be hastening your child’s weight gain and increasing their predisposition to obesity.
The Duke University-led study estimated that children ingest about 50 milligrams of dust every day.
Now, you may be thinking that your house is squeaky clean but we all know that dust can hide practically anywhere.
The chemicals found in dust are prone to activating (in early childhood) what is known as the PRARgamma receptor in the body, a key factor in obesity.
(PRARgamma is short for peroxisome proliferator-activated nuclear receptor gamma, a component which regulates fat metabolism, cell death, and cell proliferation.)
These chemicals are also found in flame retardants, lubricants, and plastic.
The study was published in the journal Environmental Science & Technology and included 25 dust samples from homes, gyms, and offices at levels approximating a typical child’s daily dust exposure.
More than half of the samples tested positive for the aforementioned receptor–which simply means that the dust found in your home may be flipping the “on switch” of obesity potential in your kid’s body.
Research is currently underway to further pinpoint exactly what other health effects these chemicals, which are unavoidable in the home and outside the home, may cause in a child’s developing body.
“We are continuing to build on this research to determine what type of health effects may be caused by this level of activation in children,” says lead study author Heather Stapleton of Duke’s Nicholas School of Environment, in a statement published on the Duke University website.
You could try getting your kids involved in cleaning up after themselves but make sure they wear masks.
Though the findings of the study have yet to be deemed conclusive, it helps to know that we need to be extra vigilant in keeping our homes clean and that even the little things can greatly impact our kid’s health.
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