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BPA FREE – is it safe?

BPA FREE – is it safe?

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Plastic… that ubiquitous material that permeates, or rather invades, almost every aspect of our lives. But what is “plastic”? In short, plastic is a petrochemical product. Yes, plastic is basically made from the same black fossil that we refine to make gasoline.

While it is almost universally believed that plastic, including bags, straws, bottles, etc., is harmful to our ecosystem, the vast majority of consumers are still convinced that it is safe to come into contact with our food and drink. 

But is it?

The reality is that over the past few years, study after study has shown that plastic leaches or releases chemicals into our food. Today it is enough to understand one thing – plastic is not an inert material. Is it any wonder that when heated, scratched, chewed, or left in the car in the hot sun, toxic chemicals are released from the plastic components into the air, food, or liquid stored in the plastic containers and bottles?

BUT ISN'T BPA-FREE PLASTIC A SAFE ALTERNATIVE? 

Ever since Bisphenol A (BPA) was recognized as an endocrine disrupting chemical, plastic manufacturers have been replacing it with other similar compounds that are responsible for the desired properties of plastic. And for several years now, the inscription BPA free for ordinary people has been associated with safety for health.

When it became clear and proven that BPA was associated with significant public health problems such as early puberty, a significant increase in breast and prostate cancer, some regulatory bodies such as the European Commission, the US Food and Drug Administration and Health Canada banned the use BPA, but only in baby bottles. And only in these countries.

Of course, the market couldn’t help but react, and given these restrictions and societal pressures, manufacturers quickly reacted and turned to alternative chemicals to produce BPA-free products.

Major chemical companies, as well as many of the leading bottle and container manufacturers, lead us to believe that “their” plastic is safe or, in their words, “toxin-free”.

Unfortunately, recent studies do NOT agree with their claims. Check out the work of Dr. Nancy Wayne of the UCLA School of Medicine, who studied the effects of plastic on the endocrine system. She calls the “BPA-free” claim a marketing scam and goes further, emphasizing that companies are swapping BPA-based plastics for other plastics – all in the name of marketing, not our health.

WHAT DO THE STUDIES ON BPA FREE PLASTICS SAY?

In recent years, studies of plastics with an alternative to BPA have written in black and white conclusions that they disrupt the reproductive system of animals no worse than BPA and are the same endocrine disruptor.

Animals had up to 40% increase in endocrine neurons indicating overstimulation of the reproductive system, embryonic stage physiology changed in as little as 25 hours leading to preterm birth, these chemicals changed chromosomes in DNA and caused problems with egg and sperm production passed down to the next three generations.

The researchers also found that both BPA and BPS exert their effects partly through the estrogen system and partly through the thyroid hormone system.

Thyroid hormone has a significant impact on brain development during pregnancy, so the study could have important implications for understanding overall fetal development, including in humans.

So far, studies have only been done on animals, but do we want to wait for confirmation of the same results in humans, which will appear only in a few years?

But why should manufacturers mislead us?

Money. Chemical companies make billions of dollars every year from plastic. Bottle and food container manufacturers use plastic to make their bottles and caps because it’s easier and cheaper than using non-plastic alternatives.

Most worryingly, even manufacturers of non-plastic bottles and containers (such as stainless steel and glass) still use plastic for their lids, sleeves, handles, drinking cups, straws, which only partially reduces the introduction of toxic elements into our food and drinks. . Some even try to cover it up with misleading environmental claims:

  • Don’t be fooled by brands that don’t list their ingredients or hide behind glorified plastic names – PP, PP #5 or polypropylene are all plastic names, Tritan® is the same plastic, etc.
  • Don’t be fooled by brands that claim to be BPA-free” or “toxin-free” because even BPA-free plastics (like BPS, etc.) still release toxic chemicals, associated with estrogenic activity.
  • Don’t be fooled by brands that have a steel shell that surrounds the plastic part – your drink is still in contact with the plastic and you or your child is drinking that drink filled with plastic.

 

National Public Radio (NPR) published a sobering article in September 2018 about the prevalence of microplastics in everyday life, and yes, unfortunately, you and your child will be exposed to plastic when using products made from this material. But doesn’t it make sense to eliminate sources of toxic chemicals whenever possible?

Is there any reason to give your child a plastic bottle or a bottle with plastic elements when there is an alternative that is truly 100% plastic free?

After reviewing emerging studies, The Daily Telegraph urged consumers to throw away all baby bottles, sippy cups, water bottles and lunch boxes that contain plastic.

And in July 2018, the American Academy of Pediatrics released a report discussing the dangers of common dietary supplements, as well as chemicals that are released from plastic food containers during normal use.

Academy Conclusion? “Use alternatives to plastic…”

So it’s fair to say that plastic news continues to get worse, from toxicity issues to environmental issues. Study after study confirms the harm of this material when it comes into contact with what we eat or drink.

Is there a place for plastic in bottles or in your baby’s body? As Maya Angelou said, “Mindfulness allows us to live better.”

Well, we all know it’s best not to expose your kids (or yourself) to toxins unnecessarily, so it’s time to change your habits and choose safer alternatives.

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