A study by the Natioanal Workgroup for Safe Markets released a report today which showed that 90 percent of canned foods tested were contaminated with Bisphenol A (BPA). BPA is a hormone disrupting chemical that acts as an estrogen. It can interfere with normal development and function of the body. It has been linked to diseases such as diabetes, breast and prostate cancer, hyperactivity in children and infertility.
This is what you should know:
1. Even cans labeled “healthy” or “organic” had detectable levels of BPA
2. An average woman consuming just a few meals prepared with canned food would ingest between 1-2 ppb per day. This level of exposure that has been associated with harm in laboratory animal studies.
3. Thermal paper used to print receipts in the grocery store has detectable levels of BPA. The BPA can be absorbed into your skin. Avoid touching receipts.
4. The levels detected in this study were 5x greater than the levels detected in the last study done by the FDA in 1996.
5. Connecticut, Maryland, Minnesota, Washington, Wisconsin, and Vermont, along with three counties in New York and the City of Chicago have already banned BPA from baby bottles and children’s sippy cups, but only Connecticut and Vermont restrict the use of BPA in cans of baby food. The Illinois legislature is trying to pass a ban as well. Denmark is the first country to enact a BPA ban and Canada has banned BPA in baby bottles while the French Senate is working to impose restrictions. Japan asked manufacturers for voluntary restriction of BPA from canned food in 1998 and saw a decline in their population’s levels of contamination.
What you can do:
- Limit your consumption of canned food by eating fresh or frozen produce
- Limit your consumption of canned soda and beer – choose glass as an alternative
- For new moms, avoid baby bottles or sippy cups made of polycarbonate plastic
- Use a BPA-free reusable water bottle, such as an unlined stainless steel bottle
- Ask your dentist to provide BPA-free treatments.