What is a BPA, where is it, and should we be concerned about it.
Let’s start with what is BPA. BPA stands for “Biss-Fee-Noll- A” which is an industrial chemical. It has been in use since the 1960’s to make various plastics and epoxy resins used to coat the inside of most canned food. BPA has been speculated to interfere with the way our natural hormones behave. Babies and young children are said to be especially sensitive to the effects of BPA. Hence the decision in 2012 by the FDA to ban BPA in ALL baby bottles and sippy cups.
At the time of this filming The Food and Drug Administration’s most recent assessment is that BPA is safe at the current levels occurring in foods. Now… that may be true but for me personally, the less chemicals I put in my body the better.
During a typical day you can unknowingly come across BPA in water bottles, plastic food containers, and even canned food and drinks. Although cans are metal they are lined with epoxy resins containing BPA to keep the can from rusting. Dental devices and sealants can also contain BPA you may want to have a conversation with your dentist before the Novocaine.
The concern is that there is research that shows BPA can seep into food or beverages from containers that are made with this chemical. One broad sampling showed 93% of participants tested positive for detectable levels of BPA. Enough exposure can have ill effects on our memory and learning functions, sexual hormones and reproduction for both males and females, and should be especially concerning for parents as this chemical can affect fetuses, infants and children.
Here are some Ways to avoid BPA
1 - Look for the BPA-free Label when buying any type of water bottles, baby pacifiers, teethers, bottle tops and bottles, food storage containers, and other consumer plastics like tableware. When you can’t find a label look for the recycle code. Recycle codes 3 OR 7 have a higher likelihood of being made with BPA.
2 - Reduce Use of Canned Goods since most cans are lined with BPA resin. I have noticed a few cans at the grocery store labeled as BPA Free so you could seek those out instead.
3 - Avoid using any kind of heat with plastic containers. The National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences made us aware that microwaving polycarbonate plastics, putting them in the dishwasher or even leaving them in a hot car can make the plastic break down over time and allow BPA to seep into foods.
The best solution overall is to choose alternatives such as stainless steel, glass or porcelain containers for hot foods and liquids instead of plastic containers whenever available. For baby pacifiers and bottle tops silicone is the safer option.
When there’s the unknown… I prefer to side with caution. And since there are more and more readily available BPA Free products and alternatives out there… why not just play it safe.
Until next time, Be Organic and Be Healthy.