Phthalate compounds in plastic wraps and food containers increase blood pressure and insulin resistance

plasticfoodcontainers associated with the use of environmental chemicals has lead to the development of replacement products for plastic wraps and containers. These products have similar adverse impact causing high blood pressure and insulin resistance suggesting that these compounds interfere with the body’s metabolism.

The replacement phthalate compounds – di-isononyl phthalate (DINP) and di-isodecyl phthalate (DIDP) – were meant to reduce the impact of another chemical, called di-2-ethylhexylphlatate (DEHP), which has adverse heath effects. DEHP was banned in Europe in 2004 and DINP and DIDP were designed to replace it.

Two new studies published in the journals Hypertension and The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism, has found that for every 10-fold increase in the consumption of phthalates, blood pressure was increased by 1.1 millimeters of mercury (mmHg).

The second study found that one in three adolescents with high phthalate levels had the highest amount of insulin resistance and 1 in 4 teenagers had insulin resistance with the lowest concentrations of the chemicals.

“Our research adds to growing concerns that environmental chemicals might be independent contributors to insulin resistance, elevated blood pressure and other metabolic disorders, said study leader Dr. Leonardo Trasande, a professor at NYU Langone.”Our study adds further concern for the need to test chemicals for toxicity prior to their broad and widespread use, which is not required under current federal law.”

“Alternatives to DIDP and DINP include wax paper and aluminum wrap; indeed, a that introduced fresh foods that were not canned or packaged in plastic reduced phthalate substantially.”


Association of exposure to di-2-ethylhexylphthalate replacements with increased blood pressure in children and adolescents, Leonardo Trasande and Teresa Attina, Hypertension, doi: 10.1161/hypertensionaha.115.05603, published online 9 July 2015, abstract.

Association of exposure to di-2-ethylhexylphthalate replacements with increased insulin resistance in adolescents from NHANES 2009-2012, Teresa Attina and Leonardo Trasande, The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism, doi: 10.1210/jc.2015-1686, published online 20 May 2015, abstract.

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