BPA, or Bisphenol A, is a chemical that is used in clear plastics and liners for canned goods. It has been used since the 1960s, and has since been banned in Canada, the European Union, and recently Malaysia and China. BPA is dangerous because of its ability to disrupt the endocrine, or hormonal, system. It has been shown to possibly increase the risk for breast and prostate cancer, diabetes, and heart disease. The National Institute of Health states that there is “some concern” about how BPA effects fetal and infant brain development and behavior. With autism being diagnosed in 1 in 110 children (and 1 in 70 boys), we need to advocate for more regulations to protect us and our children from the harmful effects of chemicals in our food and everyday products. Until then it is up to us to be the watchdogs and adjust our lifestyles.
Some ways in which to protect your child from the harmful effects of BPA:
- Only use glass baby bottles: This is the only way to ensure there is no BPA in your bottles. Even those plastic bottles labeled “BPA free” have still been found to have BPA inside. There are many glass baby bottles with silicone sleeves around them to protect them from breakage.
- Do not use plastic containers: Do not heat baby formula or food in plastic containers. Find another way to When food and liquids are heated in plastic containers, they leach more BPA into the foods.
- Breast feed: Infant formula has been shown to contain BPA. There are many other health benefits to breastfeeding, and BPA-free is one of them!
How to avoid BPA for you and your family:
- Watch out for recycle codes 3 and 7: These plastics may leak BPA into the food or beverage that it stores. Avoid frozen foods that are heated in plastics and also bottled beverages in plastic.
- Drink from stainless steel water bottles: They sell these for adults as well as children. This is an easy way to get safe and portable water and beverages without the BPA
- Avoid canned soup and canned green beans: Canned soup and green beans are shown to have high levels of BPA. If you can, avoid all canned foods and go for homemade soup, frozen vegetables and tuna in a pouch.
- Use glass containers to reheat food in microwave.
It is not difficult to steer clear from BPA, but may take a few adjustments in the types of bottles and dishes you use, as well as some of the canned foods you consume.