BPA is a synthetic estrogen, endocrine-disrupting compound (EDC) and a reproductive toxicant. It’s found in plastic food containers, linings of disposable drink cups, linings of soda cans, food cans, thermal receipts, sports equipment, CD’s, in house dust, drinking water and ambient air.
The FDA banned the use of BPA in infant bottles, formula packaging, and sippy cups in July 2012, since then companies have been removing BPA from products at the demand from consumers. Unfortunately, manufacturers have replaced BPA with more potent hormone disruptors, BPAF, BPF and BPS.
“in human breast cancer cells, BPS and BPF have been shown to mimic the effects of BPA, increasing proliferation of the cells, altering expression of genes involved in regulating the cell cycle in ways associated with development of tumors, and increasing the migration of the cells. This data indicate that BPS and BPF exposures have similar risk profiles as BPA for increasing the development and progression of breast cancer.” - Breast Cancer Prevention Partners
BPA is found in the placenta, amniotic fluid, umbilical cord, and urine of infants. It’s also present in the mother’s blood, urine, and breast milk. There is so much data documenting the harmful effects that BPA has on the developing fetus, both male and female.
In females it causes abnormal mammary tissue development that lasts into adulthood as a predictor of tumor growth.
There is a documentary called “The Disappearing Male” that goes into depth about the effect that BPA has on developing unborn males. You can watch that documentary here (the documentary only portrays white males but this situation is global).
BPA leads to more aggressive tumor growth and as many hormone disruptors, it also inhibits the effectiveness of common breast cancer chemotherapy drugs.
Although, pregnant women, fetuses and small children are the most vulnerable, hormone disruption affects people of all ages. So do not overlook these toxic chemicals when choosing a healthy lifestyle.
WAYS TO AVOID EXPOSURE
- Choose fresh, organic produce over canned, if neither are available, then frozen is the best option.
- Opt for glass or stainless steel reusable water bottles. There are some really nice ones on the market to fit your personality.
- Replace all plastic food storage containers with glass. You can use the plastic containers for storing nonfood items or recycle them. Switching to glass storage containers will save you money in the long run. I'm still using my glass storage containers that I purchased 15 years ago!
- Replace your plastic ziptop bags with reusable, 100% food grade silicone containers.
- Never reheat food in plastic containers.
- Take your own reusable glass or stainless steel drink containers when getting hot or cold drinks to-go.
- If given the choice, always choose glass over plastic. When food is manufactured, it’s bottled while it’s hot to eliminate bacterial growth. This is the point that the most BPA leaches into the food. The plastic containers will then slowly and continually leach into the food as long as it’s in the plastic.
- Never purchase peanut butter in plastic. The oil in peanuts is very strong and attracts the plasticizers from the plastic and bonds to the peanut oil, making the peanut butter loaded with plastic and toxic hormone disruptors. If you have a powerful blender, make your own peanut butter with 1 ingredient...peanuts! Make sure to store in a glass jar.
- Looking for a "No BPA" label no longer means it’s safe, so look for other options in glass and stainless steel.
- Avoid plastic water and soda bottles, they sit on extremely hot trucks and in warehouses where the plastic has time to contaminate the beverage. Get into the habit of filling a glass or stainless steel water bottle at home before you head out to eliminate the urge to purchase drinks. You can also keep a reusable glass or stainless steel mug in the car for stops at your favorite coffee shop.
If you know someone who is planning on getting pregnant, is pregnant, has small children, or has or ever had breast cancer, please share this valuable information with them.
There are many action steps and if you are someone who gets overwhelmed, take a deep breath and pick one action to do first, then move to the second and etc. Progress not perfection!
Share your wins in the comments below!