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For the record

"Men are getting fatter because of hormones in plastic and soy" Image

"Men are getting fatter because of hormones in plastic and soy"

Articles in the Daily Mail and the Daily Express on 10th October claimed “men are getting fatter because of hormones in plastic and soy” and that estrogen is “causing sperm counts to drop.” In fact, the study on which the articles are based did not show that exposure to estrogen causes obesity and did not measure sperm counts.

Dr Mandy Drake, Reader and Scottish Senior Clinical Fellow in the Centre for Cardiovascular Science at University of Edinburgh:

"The authors use historical data from South Africa and more recent self-reported data from the WHO to show that countries with higher GDP have the highest rates of obesity amongst adults. The study was not designed to discover the mechanisms which account for the disparities in obesity rates. The authors have not measured calorie intake or energy expenditure and these factors are likely to account for most of the differences in obesity rates between populations. They provide no evidence that exposure to estrogens or plastics has any influence on this process or indeed if the rates of exposure differ between the populations. They also didn’t study sperm counts or fertility rates in these populations.”

Document type: For The Record

Published: 13 October 2014

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