Early Onset Puberty

In his new book, Girls on the Edge, Dr. Leonard Sax describes four factors that he believes are putting girls at risk in today’s rapidly changing culture. One of those factors is what he labels as environmental toxins. Sax lists some of the environmental factors that are causing girls to enter puberty at a younger age. He mentions how what our girls eat will effect the onset of puberty, with girls who eat high fat and high calorie diets experiencing puberty at earlier ages. Of course there are other factors at play. Pediatricians are now saying that the onset of puberty and breast development as early as age seven is within the normal range. Those of us raising girls need to be aware that earlier onset of puberty puts girls at risk of a host of challenges, including anxiety, depression, sexual victimization, disordered eating, and substance abuse. We need to be diligent in supporting our girls and leading them through changes as we nurture them in the Lord.