Over Exposure

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We all know about the health risks associated with BPA ( Bisphenol A ) which is thought to potentially cause cancer, endocrine disorders and cardiovascular issues. Exposure to BPA during the second trimester of pregnancy could negatively impact brain development and hormone levels of fetuses.

The chemical is found in hard plastics, such as those used for water bottles, paper reciepts and the lining of many cans. Due to its toxicity, scientists have scrambled to find a replacement.
The new chemical, BPS, is currently being scrutinized and there is concern that it could be even more hazardous to our health than its predecessor. Not only is it thought to have similar negative effects on our bodies, it also stays around longer, due to its strengthened resistance to environmental degradation. Researchers currently estimate that 88% of the population has traces of BPS in their urine.

While we live in a chemically treated society and it is impossible to completely avoid exposure to these chemicals, there are some steps we can take to cut down the amount of exposure we incur.

Ditch the plastic containers. Opt for reusable glass versions for food storage, and metal or glass bottles for water.

If you must use plastic containers, never microwave food in them, or put them in the dishwasher. The change in temperature releases the harmful gasses. Never leave plastic water bottles in the sun. Transfer food to glass or ceramic dishes to reheat.

Wash your hands after handling register reciepts, or accept the paperless option where available.

Purchase milk, juice and other liquids in glass jars or paper cartons. Where possible, opt for tetra packed items, instead of cans. Tomatoes are especially acidic, and cause the chemicals in the lining of the cans to leach into the foods. If you must use cans, try to find those labeled BPA free.

While all of these options can be more costly, it is a small price to pay to lower your risk for deadly diseases.

photo: Glasshouse Images

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