Unsexy Cancers – Women’s Breast Cancer & Men’s Prostate Cancer

Fifty percent of men will get prostate cancer; thirty percent of women will get breast cancer. You hope it is not you!




Between surgery, X-rays, and chemotherapy some will be cured or put into remission. But a high percentage of the afflicted will die of their cancer.

If you have been reading the articles on this blog site, you will know that most cancers result from toxic chemicals. What’s known about the causes of these two cancers? Some about breast cancer and very little about prostate cancer. Most researchers believe they are caused by a combination of genetics, glandular damage during the fetal stage, and exposure to a variety of toxic chemicals. What has been learned follows.

Dr. Devra Davis reported that breast fat and serum lipids (fats) of women with breast cancer have elevated levels of chlorinated chemicals. Dr. Sarah Janssen stated that more than 200 chemicals are known to either alter or cause tumor formation in breast tissue. The report, State of the Evidence, 6th edition, 2010, from the Breast Cancer Fund lists six classes of chemicals that cause mammary cancers (in animals) and 14 classes that are hormone disruptors and likely contribute to breast cancer. In   2007 the International Agency for Research on Cancer identified 415 known or suspect carcinogens (i.e., causing cancer). Breast cancer was strongly linked to exposure to DDT before puberty, and prostate cancer was linked to exposure to pesticides and polyaromatic hydrocarbons. After synthesizing data from national and international sources, the Silent Spring Institute scientists identified 216 chemicals that caused mammary cancers in animals, and 100 of these are commonly encountered in our everyday lives.

Okay men – it’s your turn to pay attention. A 2008 report from the University of Illinois by Dr. Gail S. Prins states that “there is increasing evidence that specific endocrine-disrupting chemicals may influence the development or progression of prostate cancer.” Direct information on men comes from studies of increased prostate cancer rates among farmers: six pesticides were found to be strongly linked to increased rates of prostate cancer. Two other common environmental toxic chemicals found to be linked to prostate cancer were Bisphenol-A (BPA) and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). One of the most important conclusions deserves quoting. There appears to be heightened sensitivity of the prostate to hormone disruptors during the critical development windows in the uterus and during puberty. Pay attention young and expectant mothers!

We are all contaminated with chemicals that can damage our health, and the effects often do not show up for decades: women in their 30s to 50s with breast cancer, and men in their 50s and beyond with prostate cancer. The exact linkage has yet to be discovered, but a person does not have to wait for the final chapter to know what to do to minimize their chances of getting one of these dreaded afflictions – this whole blog site is about prevention.


About donlouis

The author has long had a keen interest in staying healthy and fit, and in doing whatever I can to keep the natural environment unpolluted and a healthy space for people and all animals. As a former Board Member of a municipal water district, I regularly had to deal with the issue of water quality. I first became aware of radiation hazards from toxic materials while working on uranium for nuclear reactors. During the 1960s I was tuned into the global hazard from Strontium 90 raining down from atmospheric testing of nuclear bombs. While working in the chemical industry in later years I became aware of the many forms of chemical contaminants entering the environment every day, and resolved to do something about it. I am able to make sense out of the voluminous descriptions of common toxic chemical because of my training in chemistry, with a Ph.D. degree and several decades of research and development work in the chemical industry. My training and experience enables me to present to readers reliable and current information on the topic of chemical hazards in the environment, and their threats to human health. All my life I have loved hiking and camping in nature. Skiing, river kayaking, and tennis have been my favorite physical activities. Nature photography is my artistic passion.
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