6 Surprising Items That Contain BPA

by Gregory
#eatclean pantry

Plastics are as omnipresent as the McDonald’s that uses them on every corner of America!  It’s not just used for our water bottles and food containers, but it pervades all industry.  Most commonly seen as a convenient way to carry products with no risk of breakage, plastics are in most appliances, building & construction, medical supplies, toys, luggage and scores of other items.   Though none of these uses will shock you, there are quite a few surprising items that contain BPA, the most infamous plasticizer in the world.

Different types of plastics abound…from polypropylene to the popular polyvinyl chloride (PVC).  Most plastics used in food and packaging have a numbered category system.  Bisphenol-A or BPA, found in many polycarbonate plastics, is typically seen in numbers 3, 6, and 7.   Take a look on the bottom of all plastic containers at the supermarket to see which products have which number.  (Most disposable water bottles are #1.)

Let’s focus back on BPA.  Before we cover the surprising items that contain BPA, and the sister substitutes they use in its place, let’s cover the dangers of BPA.  I strongly recommend you read our article on the Lie that is “BPA-free.”

{Read our article on 5 Household Toxins You Must Remove From Your House.}

BPA: The Second Estrogen?

First of all BPA is found 90% of American’s urine.  If you are eating anything resembling the Standard American Diet (SAD) you are one of those people. (I am confident I am one of those as well.)  Unfortunately, it is also absorbed by the skin and exposed to the lungs in inhalation as well.

Decades of independent studies show that BPA is wreaking systematic damage to the body.  First of all it is an endocrine-disruptor (i.e. it messes with your hormones).  Specifically, it is called a xenoestrogen or “environmental estrogen” which means it mimics the release of artificial estrogen into the body.  When the body receives “fake estrogen” from external sources (such as phthalates, parabens, birth control pills, menopausal hormone replacement drugs etc.) it throws off the thermostat so to speak.  One of the main results of this distortion is an increased chance of reproductive organ cancers.

Dangers of BPA

Several independent studies show that BPA cause a significant increase in the rate of:

  • Breast cancer
  • Birth Defects
  • Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS)
  • Thyroid gland disorders
  • Neurological problems
  • Insulin resistance (leads to Type II Diabetes)
  • Fat storage (or adipogenesis)
  • Damage to tooth enamel
  • Arrhythmia (heart rate irregularity)
  • In rats, doses of BPA have caused shrunken testicles, erectile dysfunction, low libido, and generalized infertility in both sexes.

Clearly you don’t want to take a chance in acquiring any of these maladies.  The issue is this.  Even if you don’t use plastic water bottles or Tupperware, most of your food is packaged in it.   Peruse down the aisles of your supermarket and you will see that most of the processed goods come in plastic containers.  You might say, “Well, at least the canned goods don’t have it.”  (Alas, that can’t be said.)  So let’s say you do make an effort to stay away from all food items that come in plastics and you don’t use the aforementioned water bottles and plastic containers, it is hard to avoid BPA in its covert form.

Now that we covered the dangers of BPA let’s cover surprising items that contain BPA .

Canned Goods

The large majority of canned goods are sprayed with BPA to serve as a sealant.  The BPA leaches into the food item and thus into your body upon consumption.

Solution: In the case of fruits & vegetables, always opt for frozen or fresh.  For beans, purchase them in bags and prepare them on your own.

Aluminum Beverage Cans

If canned foods boast them, why would canned drinks be any different?  Used as a sealant they are in all aluminum-based cans.

Solution: If you must drink sodas, opt for those in glass containers.

Laser Receipts

Every time you grab that receipt you are absorbing BPA.  BPA is placed in receipts for improved stability and heat-resistance.  It also saves money since ink is no longer needed.

Solution: Don’t take receipts, or have them emailed to you if you need them for your records.  If you are an employee who handles a lot of receipts, seriously consider wearing gloves.

Dental Sealants

Most people are unaware that that your cavities are being sealed-up by an epoxy amalgam which contains BPA. The problem with BPA in the epoxy, along with mercury in the silver amalgams, is that their vapors emits their toxins straight into your lungs non-stop.  Throw in the use of fluoride, a known IQ-dropper and infertility-maker, and the dentist office becomes a haven for toxic fumes.

Solution: Seriously consider finding a holistic dentist.  (Here is a link to the  national database.).  These do not use BPA, mercury, fluoride.   Even better they extract rotten teeth that otherwise would have have a root canal (since there is a direct correlation between root canals and cancer.)

 {Read our article on which fish have the most mercury toxicity.}

DVDs & CDs

BPA is used on these entertainment discs to help focus the laser beam onto the disc so it may be read.  An epoxy with BPA in it is also sprayed on them to protect the disc for corrosion and scratches.

Solution:  Touch the sides of the discs only.

All Plastics are the Devil!

Though plastics have revolutionized our modern way of life, we should make a concerted effort to minimize their exposure to our body.  BPA is seen as the most detrimental plasticizer on the market, but the problem is that ALL Plastics, #1-#7 leach harmful hormone disruptors into the blood stream.  All of them!  To make matters worse, the greater exposure you have to plastics while pregnant affect the neurologic  and endocrine development of your unborn baby so it is especially crucial during pregnancy to eliminate plastics the best you can.  (The same may be said of phthalates, parabens, VOCs, and other airborne pollutants.)

Here are some key actions that will help minimize exposure (aside from the ones already mentioned):
  • Don’t warm up plastics.  Warming up plastics accelerates the leaching of BPA and other chemicals into the food.
  • Don’t microwave plastic Tupperware containers or any form of plastic food storage.
  • Don’t microwave frozen entrees (move them to a ceramic or glass container prior to warming.)
  • Don’t, don’t microwave baby bottles.  Use glass bottles.  (If you can’t find one at your nearby grocery store, Amazon sells them.  Click here to purchase some glass bottles.
  • Don’t drink anything that comes in plastics.  Disposable water bottles…Anything!
  • When pregnant stay away from plastics as much as human possible.

I know it is extremely difficult, if not impossible, to truly implement these actions.  Just do the best you can…especially when you are pregnant or have young children.

On a personal note, I offer bonus points on tests for students who use stainless steel or glass bottles in lieu of plastic ones to transport their water.  I try to impart to them the hazards of plastics as much as I possible can.  As the old 70s cartoons “School House Rock” used to sing “Knowledge is power!”

Subscribe to NPE Radio now for relevant clean eating, weight loss, and toxin awareness tips!  

A. Gregory Luna

(We would appreciate your comments below.)


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