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How a Toxic Diet and Lack of Sun Exposure and Exercise Set the Stage for Precocious Puberty and Heightened Cancer Risk

Story at-a-glance -

  • Recent research reveals American children are hitting puberty earlier than ever before. The median age for breast development is now around nine, with rare cases of extreme precocious puberty occurring in girls as young as four
  • Overweight and obese girls developed breasts about a year earlier than normal-weight girls
  • Boys are also beginning sexual development anywhere from six months to two years earlier than the medically accepted standard
  • Driving factors behind rising precocious puberty rates include childhood obesity, hormone-mimicking chemicals in food and common household products, and widespread vitamin D deficiency
  • The average obese woman gets a mere one hour of vigorous exercise per year; obese men get just over 3.5 hours annually. Children are increasingly inactive as well, which can create a lifelong vicious cycle of declining health

By Dr. Mercola

American children are hitting puberty earlier than ever before, and the health ramifications of this go far beyond the obvious emotional challenges it may produce. A recent longitudinal study, published in the November 2013 issue of Pediatrics, examined the age at onset of breast development, and the impact of BMI and ethnicity on the precocious puberty trend.

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