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Have you ever wondered how many things made of plastic you use in your daily life? From baby bottles, home appliances, and compact discs to medical devices or watches, plastic is everywhere. And it would not be a cause for concern if it were not for the fact that this material can release substances that could be harmful to health. Bisphenol A, known as BPA, is an industrial chemical that is used in the production of plastic and, among other things, is considered an obesogen; that is, an environmental agent that makes us fat. Among other risks of plastic are the increase in the incidence of cancer, especially breast and prostate cancer, and reproductive problems in both men and women. According to data from the Centers for Disease Prevention and Control, 93% of Americans have BPA in their urine.
It is good that you know that due to the wide and constant exposure of people to BPA and the large production of this chemical - it was estimated that in 2015 it would reach 6 million tons - the National Toxicology Program has carried out studies and It has come, among other conclusions, to affirm that there is some concern that BPA has negative effects on the brain, behavior and prostate in fetuses, infants and children.
What you must do to avoid damage from BPA
Although consumer awareness is growing, there are not many federal or state guidelines in the United States that regulate the amount of toxins in plastic products. To avoid damaging BPA, follow these tips from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences:
Store and heat food in glass or porcelain containers.
- Don't put plastic containers in the microwave.
- Do not drink or eat from plastic plates or glasses.
- Discard plastic utensils if they are worn or damaged.
- Opt for glass or polycarbonate-free bottles.
- Do not continue to use so-called "sippy cups" if they are damaged, scratched, or missing a piece.
- Although some companies no longer use plastics with BPA, those who say BPA-free may have bisphenol-AF or bisphenol-S, which can be just as harmful as BPA.
- Instead of buying bottled water in plastic containers, bring your own filtered water in a stainless steel thermos.
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It is best not to use plastic containers, such as tupperware, but if you have to do it, look at the number that they have inside the recycling triangle, those numbers go from 1 to 7. The most recommended are those that have a 1, a 2, a 4 or a 5. Don't use the ones with a 3, a 6 or a 7. The reason? 3 contains polyvinyl chloride (PVC), 6 is polystyrene, and 7 is generally polycarbonate, and this releases BPA. When you go to dispose of them, instead of throwing them away, recycle them.