Blog, Health

BPAs: The What, Why, and How to Avoid

I don’t know about you but sometimes I feel like there’s a little acronym overload in the world. I get confused! (Parentheses story: Yesterday my brother in law was talking about DND…it’s not Dunkin’ Donuts just an FYI to add more acronyms to the mix.) I mean they’re usually just short for long words we can barely pronounce anyway, so it’s a good time to abbrev.

So today, we’re talking about BPA. And why it should be an acronym we actually understand!

MSG, the first acronym I feared, is the reason why shiny Chinese food creeps me out. That one is a lurky acronym! Food additives to preserve food and make you overeat. Nooooo thank you! I’d rather go preservative free and eat nature’s fresh goodness. And let my body tell me naturally when I’m full.

Back to BPA! I know I have seen it all over water bottles and plastic ware, but why is it another lurky acronym?

BPA stands for Bisphenol A. Try saying that really fast 5 times. It’s an additive in a lot of plastics, since plastics became so mainstream in the 1960s.

Why should we care? BPA can leak into whatever touches it’s surface. Tupperware containing food you drink, bottles containing liquids you drink…lots of places that could end up in your body.   The National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences cites a survey by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) with detectable levels of BPA in 93% of people six years and older.  Ick!

The FDA is doing studies on the effects of BPA and its relationship to various health concerns. Brain, behavior, prostate health, and increased blood pressure. Yikes, bikes! While nothing is a definite, those risks don’t sound worth it to me, so I’m gonna stay away from BPA to continue my toxin free lifestyle!

How do I stay away from BPA? If you’re concerned like me, here’s what we can do:

  • Use only BPA-free products like bottles, food containers, oil diffusers, etc.
  • Use less cans. Focus on fresh foods and dried beans. Some canned foods come in cartons if you look in the natural foods aisle.
  • Avoid heat. Hand wash plastics or heat your food on the stove. Def don’t put Tupperware in the microwave as heat can further break down plastic.
  • Use alternatives. Glass Tupperware, metal pots and pans to heat food, and reusable steel water bottles!
  • Check the little triangle before you buy! I’m gonna blow your mind. There’s a number inside that actually means something. On plastic containers, you’ll see a number 1-7. Avoid 3 and 7, which indicate BPA is present! The rest of them, all BPA free. The way to be!

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