Saturday, August 1, 2009
Warning: BPA Found in Baby Food Jars
Is this dangerous for our babies?
The estrogen-mimicking chemical bisphenol A is widely found in baby food sold in glass jars in Canada, according to a survey conducted by Health Canada that found the compound in about 84 percent of samples.
"The results of this survey clearly indicate that exposure to BPA through the consumption of jarred baby food products would be extremely low" with the amounts "not expected to pose a health risk to the consumer," Health Canada officials said.
Is this something to worry about? Pediatrician Dr. Cara Natterson says:
Here's my bottom line: This isn't something to lose sleep over, but it isn't something to blow off, either.
BPA is a chemical that can potentially cause disease. It has been accused (among other things) of causing uterine fibroids, endometriosis, breast cancer, lowering sperm count, and increasing the risk of prostate cancer. Many challenge these accusations because the studies that document these effects are small or have not been repeated. But what most people agree upon is that BPA is an endocrine disruptor: a chemical that can affect the way hormones work in some people's bodies. For this reason, if it can be avoided, it probably should be.
Canada has been on the front lines of the war against BPA. In April 2008, the Canadian government classified BPA as "toxic" to human health and the environment. One of the reasons why is that BPA can imitate the actions of estrogen and, many times, BPA concentrations are far higher than normal estrogen concentrations found in the body (parts per billion versus parts per trillion). But this accusation -- that there is more BPA in many products sold on the market than there is estrogen in our own bodies -- isn't entirely fair. BPA is not estrogen, it just looks like estrogen. And according to most studies, the biological effects of BPA are nowhere near those of estrogen: it is not nearly as potent as the natural hormone, and oftentimes it is completely impotent.
at 11:58 AM