It’s hiding in the lining of cans, in baby bottles, toys, and in other plastic items that most people use every day. Bisphenol-A, or BPA, in plastics has become an issue of concern recently as people raise questions about its safety. Now, Canada has taken a stand and openly calls BPA toxic. Should other nations follow suit?
The Dangers of BPA: What You Don’t Know Can Hurt You
BPA is a chemical used in the manufacture of plastic items. Concerns arise because BPA has the potential to act as an endocrine disrupter – meaning it can alter the activity of natural hormones in the body such as estrogen and testosterone that give males and females their sex characteristics. These hormones also play a critical role in reproduction, and BPA has been associated with reproductive issues in animals.
Even more disturbing is, according to animal studies, the dangers of BPA start as early as in-utero. Mice exposed to bisphenol-A while in the womb are more susceptible to breast cancer later in life. Experts also question whether bisphenol-A plays a role in ADHD and learning problems.
Is BPA Toxic: Canada’s Stand on the Dangers of BPA
In a surprising move, Canada acknowledged the dangers of BPA in plastics, admitting it’s likely to be a threat to human health and the environment – one of the first countries to take such a firm stand. Unfortunately, bisphenol-A is widely distributed in plastic products, cans, household products, make-up, and even in the air and water supply. Particularly concerning is BPA in baby bottles since children are more susceptible to its endocrine disrupting effects.
In one Harvard study, researchers gave people plastic bottles to drink from for seven days. At the end of that seven days, the sippers had seventy percent more bisphenol-A in their bloodstream. It’s even worse if you heat plastic bottles that contain BPA, because heat causes the toxin to leach out into the fluid.
How to Reduce the Dangers of BPA in Plastics
Buy beverages in glass bottles, and only use glass for storage or heating in a microwave. Get rid of plastic drinking bottles, and use stainless steel instead. Limit the number of canned foods you use since the liners contain bisphenol-A – and soft drink cans do too. Buy children’s items, including toys, which are BPA-free since children may put them in their mouth.
The bottom line? Canada acknowledges the dangers of BPA – and so should you. Take steps to protect you and your family.
Food Quality News. “Bisphenol A officially declared toxic by Canada”
WBUR.org. “Study: Plastic Bottles Increase BPA Levels In Humans”