Why BPA free? is BPA Dangerous?

When shopping for certain plastic products, such as baby bottles, you may notice that some of the products you find are labeled “BPA free.” However, if you aren’t familiar with BPA, you may wonder why this label matters. Below is some basic information about BPA and its dangers.

What is BPA?

“BPA” stands for bisphenal A, a chemical compound first discovered in the late 1800s. Some years later, a polymer chemist discovered that BPA could be used to make plastic. Following this discovery, BPA was used to manufacture a variety of plastic products, including many brands of baby bottles.

BPA FreeWhy is BPA Dangerous?

The bonds that compose BPA are not very stable. As plastic formed by BPA ages, the compound breaks down and releases harmful toxins into whatever surrounds it. In the case of baby bottles, the BPA leaches into the milk, juice or water contained in the bottle. Furthermore, when the plastic is heated, the compound breaks down even faster, thus leaking even more toxic material into the bottle’s contents.

BPA can cause a variety of problems when consumed. It acts much like estrogen in the body, and scientists believe that it may raise the risk of breast cancer, especially when women are exposed to it at a young age. Studies have also shown that BPA decreases sperm count, limits cancer patients’ sensitivity to chemotherapy and contributes to the development of diabetes. Finally, some studies indicate that the compound may even cause spontaneous miscarriages and birth defects.

How to Avoid BPA

When purchasing baby bottles, you can avoid BPA by choosing glass bottles or looking for plastic bottles marked “BPA free.” Regardless of  whether you choose plastic or glass bottles, you should make sure that the nipples are made with BPA free silicone. BPA may also be found in canned foods and plastic water bottles, so take care when purchasing these products as well.

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