Washington D.C. [USA]: Lavender oil exposure is associated with abnormal breast growth in young girls, suggest a study.
The study was published in the ‘Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.’
Previous research has associated breast growth in boys with lavender-containing fragrances. This study is the first to report abnormal breast growth in young girls.
The researchers found that breast growth in young girls and boys resolved after discontinuing lavender-containing fragranced products. They also determined that certain components of essential oils mimic estrogen and block testosterone, indicating that essential oils could be a source for the breast growth observed in these cases.
“The public should be aware of these findings and consider all evidence before deciding when to use essential oils,” said J. Tyler Ramsey, the study’s lead investigator.
“It’s also important that physicians are aware that lavender and tea tree oils contain endocrine-disrupting chemicals and should be considered in the evaluation of premature breast development in young girls and boys, and the swelling of breast tissue in adult men,” Ramsey added.
“It appears that essential oil products have the potential to cause premature breast growth in young girls and boys, so it may be best to discontinue using them on children,” Ramsey said.