A new study points out the hormonal imbalances that can cause lavender essential oil in small and young girls.
Prevent digestive disorders, cure migraine, fight colds ... To cure our little sores and ward off the ills of winter, many of us turn to essential oils.
Each year, nearly 13.6 million small bottles of aromatherapy are sold in France, or 2,000 per day! A booming sector that should not forget that essential oils, although natural, are not without risk to health and require some precautions.
A new study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism of the Endocrine Society is here to remind him. According to its authors, lavender essential oil is linked to abnormal breast growth in young girls exposed to it.
The presence of endocrine disruptors
By analyzing the components of the essential oil, the researchers found that some functioned as endocrine disruptors, mimicking estrogen and blocking testosterone. It is this hormonal imbalance that is causing abnormal breast growth in teenage and pre-adolescent girls.
"The public should be aware of these findings and consider all the evidence before deciding to use essential oils," says J. Tyler Ramsey, principal investigator of the study. "It is also important for doctors to know that lavender and tee trea oils contain endocrine-disrupting chemicals and that they should be considered in the assessment of premature breast development in young girls and women. boys, and the swelling of breast tissue in adult men. "
A risk of gynecomastia in men
Already last year, the Endocrine Society warned against the use of these essential oils of lavender and tea tree in young boys because of the risk of gynecomastia, that is to say, growth of breasts at home. men.
Regular use of products composed in part of these oils prevents the action of testosterone, which has an impact on puberty and growth.
Fortunately, this growth of breasts in young girls and boys was resorbed after the abandonment of scented products containing lavender or tea tree.
"It seems that essential oil products have the potential to cause premature breast growth in girls and boys, so it's best to stop using them in children," Ramsey says. .
As a reminder, it is advisable to ask an advice to your doctor or pharmacist before the use of essential oils, especially in young children and pregnant women.