What’s in your water?

Raise your hand if you’ve ever left your full water bottle in the car during the day and when you go to drink it later the water tastes like melted plastic and regret?

Yeah…gross. Even grosser?  You actually might be ingesting the chemical compounds of the plastic.

You can’t hear about plastic anymore without hearing about the concerns of BPA and other harmful chemicals leaching into your food or beverages.  Even baby toys are now being made BPA-free to protect the little nuggets while they gnaw on their toys.

So what exactly is BPA?

BPA stands for Bisophenol A, which is a chemical used to make clear plastic.  It’s also used to coat the insides of metal food cans to protect the cans from rusting.

Why is BPA free important?

According to an article in the Scientific American, Bisophenol A was originally created to be a synthetic estrogen in the 1930s.  Other synthetic hormones were developed later and instead of discarding this compound, manufacturers decided to add it to their plastic products to make them more durable.  Gross. Originally BPA was considered safe, until studies showed that trace amounts actually did have a negative effect on the body. Now, studies are showing that BPA actually does what it was first developed to do and it disrupts hormones.  Scientist Patricia Hunt actually showed that fetal exposure to BPA actually disrupts the fetus’ own future reproductive health.

What can we do instead?

Stainless steel and glass water bottles are typically considered the safest options.  More and more manufacturers are listening to their consumers and producing BPA-free items. Peter and I use Klean Kanteen water bottles.  Camelbak also makes a glass water bottle that is protected with a shock-absorbing cover.

Apparently items with the recycle code “7” (inside the recycle triangle symbol) contain BPA, while the others are typically considered safe.  I also try to avoid microwaving plastic or eating a lot of canned food products.

Do you try to avoid BPA?  Had you heard about this before? Do you think it’s worth all the bad press?

 

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