BPA-free: Replacing one nasty chemical for another
(NaturalNews) Bisphenol-A (BPA), the famous synthetic chemical compound most of us have been scared away from using, now has competition. We've all heard the term, and by now, many know to avoid this widely used hormone disrupter that mimics estrogen and has been linked to serious health challenges. From water bottles to plastic wrap, we're all on the BPA-free bandwagon. But is replacing one nasty chemical for another really changing anything? And, is there such a thing as safe plastic?
The first studies proving the dangers of BPA forced manufacturers to launch a new generation of plastics to get around the widespread ban on BPA. The label "BPA-free" has now become a household name and something many consumers seek out, and will pay more for, to ensure safety.
Unfortunately, now, the peace of mind that this BPA-free labeling brought is being questioned. A new study suggests that the "BPA-free" label doesn't necessarily guarantee that a product is harmless.
In a recent study in which scientists conducted lab tests on multiple top-brand baby and toddler bottles, it was found that many leached chemicals that reacted like the hormone estrogen, even though most were BPA-free. According to this same research, some of those products that were tested actually released synthetic estrogens that were more potent than BPA.
The new study also suggests that the public's beliefs and attention on purchasing BPA-free to avoid harmful side effects may be misguided. These chemicals send false signals to cells that the hormone estrogen is present, potentially causing all sorts of troubling developmental and reproductive consequences.
The warnings remain: Avoid heating plastic in microwaves and allowing your plastic water bottle to bake in the the sun's ultraviolet rays, among anything else that will heat food or beverages in plastic. Yet, unfortunately, this isn't the only way to avoid leaching harmful toxins from plastics that can potentially lead to serious health issues. These chemicals wreak havoc on the body's endocrine system and have proven links to such health problems as cancer, insulin-resistant diabetes, early puberty, infertility and even organ and brain damage, to name a few.
Can we escape the harmful effects of the chemicals in plastic? Plastic is in so many products we use on an everyday basis, from the linings of cans -- even organic products -- to grocery receipts. Once again, the studies are supporting the evidence that, truth be told, a chemical is a chemical.
Although the US Food and Drug Administration published a paper which states that BPA is safe at low doses, this raises the questions: "How can we measure the consumption we are receiving on a daily basis when plastic is in so many things?"; and "Is even a low dose of a chemical that has been reported to 'reprogram your cells into causing disease' really worth it?"