Study links eating out to increased phthalates exposure

April 03, 2018

A study published by Rachel Morello-Frosch and co-authors in the journal Environment International links eating out in restaurants with higher body levels of phthalates, a group of chemicals associated with a host of health issues, including cancer and diabetes.

The team of researchers, which included scientists from UC Berkeley, UC San Francisco, and George Washington University, analyzed urine sample data for more than 10,000 Americans taken between 2005 and 2014 from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, a nationwide health survey conducted biannually. Their study concluded that dining out may increase cumulative phthalates exposure and that certain types of foods prepared in restaurants and cafeterias, such as sandwiches, are associated with higher phthalate levels.

The the results of the study were widely covered in international news media including:

Read more about the study on George Washington University's website