Here at the Acupuncture & Wellness Center, we are constantly staying abreast of current events in our country’s food policies. In particular, new compounds added to our food supply. Often times names of ingredients that get bad publicity will be removed and replaced with something that sells better, because it sounds healthier. That doesn’t always mean the newer and friendlier item is always better for us than the one it’s trying to replace. Read below to find out how the cancer-causing BPA in plastic bottles was replaced with a potentially as dangerous compound BPS, and how marketing efforts of manufacturers can hide this information from you.
In recent years, plastic manufacturers have stopped using the chemical BPA in their products after it was found to have damaging effects on the human endocrine system. Bisphenal A is a component used to strengthen plastics, in everything from sippy cups to disposable water bottles. After it was linked to a rise in breast and prostate cancers, this led producers to seek alternate chemicals such as Bisphenal S – or BPS.
Companies who previously used BPA state that their products are now safe after switching to BPS. However a UCLA-led study published in Endocrinology journal suggests otherwise.
Researchers found that zebra fish suffered the same harmful effects with BPA AND BPS. These fish are typically used to conduct studies into genetics and embryonic development, as their translucent skins enable a better view at the physical changes taking place in the animals.
“Our study shows that making plastic products with BPA alternatives does not necessarily leave them safer,” endocrinologist Nancy Wayne from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), told sources. “Our findings are frightening – consider it the aquatic version of the canary in the coal mine.”
“Egg-hatching time accelerated, leading to premature birth,” said Wayne, who is also UCLA’s associate vice chancellor for research. “The embryos developed much faster than normal in the presence of BPA or BPS.”
The team went on to say, although this is conjecture at this point, that endocrine-disrupting chemicals may be responsible for the spike in premature human birth and puberty rates in the United States within the last two decades. “Our data supports that hypothesis,” Wayne said. “If BPA is impacting a wide variety of animal species, then it’s likely to be affecting human health.”
Products that are supposedly ‘BPA-free’ are all over the market, down every grocery aisle and on every shelf. The problem with removing one toxin and simply replacing it with another means consumers will now struggle to find a truly safe alternative. Many additional studies have shown that items which include the BPA replacement chemicals released even more of the damaging compounds. That amount increases when in direct sunlight: so make sure to never drink from a bottle left in your hot car.
The safest, healthiest option is to simply avoid plastics altogether. Glass is the best alternative, while it is heavier and may be cumbersome for youngsters, there’s a number of options that may be more beneficial to children. Head over to Care2 for a great rundown and review on all the best alternatives.
Leave a Reply