Toxic Non-Metal Chemical Profile

Monoethylphthalate (MEP)

Optimal Result: 0 - 5 µg/g creatinine.

Monoethyl Phthalate (or Monoethylphthalate) (MEP) from diethyl phthalate is the most abundant phthalate metabolite found in urine. Diethyl phthalate is used in plastic products. Elevated values indicate exposure from various possible sources. Elimination of phthalates may be accelerated by sauna treatment.

Parent: Diethylphthalates

Phthalates may be the most widespread group of toxins in our environment, commonly found in many bath and beauty products, cosmetics, perfumes, oral pharmaceuticals, insect repellants, adhesives, inks, and varnishes. Phthalates have been implicated in reproductive damage, depressed leukocyte function, and cancer. Phthalates have also been found to impede blood coagulation, lower testosterone, and alter sexual development in children. Low levels of phthalates can feminize the male brain of the fetus, while high levels can hyper-masculinize the developing male brain.

What does it mean if your Monoethylphthalate (MEP) result is too high?

Monoethylphthalate (MEP) is the result of exposure to phthalates and the major metabolite of diethyl phthalate. Diethyl phthalate makes plastics more flexible and appears in many common household products including:

- food packaging,

- tools,

- toothbrushes,

- toys,

- aftershave lotions,

- aspirin,

- bath products,

- cosmetics,

- detergents,

- eye shadows,

- hairsprays,

- insecticides,

- mosquito repellants,

- nail extenders,

- nail polish,

- nail polish removers,

- skin care products,

- hairstyling products,

- and auto parts.

Adults and children are exposed to phthalates through everyday contact with these products as well as contact with indoor air and dust. When mouthed, chewed or sucked in the course of normal play, phthalates leach from toys into childrens’ mouths.

Phthalates have been linked to:

- premature birth,

- reproductive defects,

- and early onset puberty.

Phthalates have been linked to cancer, autoimmunity, and organ damage in laboratory tests on rodents.

Childrens’ allergies have been linked to phthalate exposure. Phthalate exposure in pregnant women changed the anogenital distance in neonatal boys; a change that in rodents exposed to phthalates was associated with genital abnormalities. Use of infant lotion, infant powder, and infant shampoo were associated with increased infant urine concentrations of phthalate metabolites. Individuals with high values, especially women who want to have children or children who have been exposed, may wish to dramatically reduce their exposures to these substances. Virtually all phthalates may cause quinolinic acid elevation because of interference with tryptophan metabolism. Seven European countries have outlawed two major types of the compounds in cosmetics and baby toys. Elimination of MEP, diethyl phthalate, and all phthalates can be accelerated by sauna treatment, by the Hubbard detoxification protocol employing niacin supplementation, or by glutathione (reduced) supplementation (oral, intravenous, transdermal, or precursors such as N-acetyl cysteine [NAC]).

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