Really? BPA free? Toxicity and Plastics

Really? BPA free?  Toxicity and Plastics

Plastics are everywhere, convenient and affordable.    Personally, I do not find the benefits outweighing the harm that they cause.  Two known and well-researched toxic chemicals are Bisphenol A (BPA) and Phthalates.  The harm is in the toxic chemicals that plastic releases into the environment and into our bodies.  Odorless and tasteless, yet daily exposure to these harmful chemicals changes our DNA.  Children are at the greatest risk since they consume more for their size. 1,2,3   We often see sports fields littered with drink bottles cooking in the hot sun.  Our kids then consume those toxins leached from the heated plastic.

Bisphenol A (BPA) is a compound found in plastics.  BPA’s are an endocrine disruptor (think messes with your hormones) and many manufacturers are advertising BPA free products.  Unfortunately, BPA’s are still used in the lining of canned goods and containers as plastic products not used for consumables such as pacifiers and toys .  We also know it is not the only harmful compound in plastic that is toxic.

Phthalates are a well-researched but underreported chemical found in plastics.  Phthalates are endocrine disruptors and found in all plastics and many cosmetics.

Due to limited research dollars there are other compounds that haven’t been tested for their impact on our bodies and the environment.  Ignorance is not bliss as these compounds are often stored in our fat tissue and builds up in our body, soil, ocean and the air we breathe.

What can you do to minimize your exposure to these harmful chemicals?    Embrace alternatives like bamboo, glass, stainless steel (although many have a resin plastic coating inside), and all natural cloth.  Use a glass containers for leftovers, a stainless steel thermos, and organic cotton lunch bags.  Glass containers can go from the freezer to the microwave.  Some of my favorite products are:  Life Factory glass water bottles, versatile and colorful ECO Lunchbags,  and Pyrex glass container sets.  Opt never to use plastic in the microwave.

If you use plastic look at the number rating on the bottom of the container and use the following as your guide.4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Harvard School of Public Health Study appears in the Journal of Environmental Health Perspectives, September, 2009

http://ehp03.niehs.nih.gov/article/fetchArticle.action?articleURI=info:doi/10.1289/ehp.0900604

1 http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/ajmg.b.31094/full

2 http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2920080/

3 http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0160412011000432

4 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Resin_identification_code

 

© Donna Sigmond, EastWest Wellness

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  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003406171744 emiliano

    I am lucky to live in Canada where BPA has been banned. But, I am still trinyg to become BPA free in my home because it seems like plastic is everywhere I turn. I switched from Nalgene bottles to Kleen Kanteens. And we try to use glass food storage containers. Every time I think I hae thrown everything out, I find something new… and what to do with it really? Bad for the landfill, don’t want to pass it on to other people… sheesh!