Ditch the Plastic Storage Containers


Time to think about what kind of food storage containers and drink bottles you are using in your home. Do you use plastic?

 

Hormone disrupting chemicals found in many plastics can interfere with your body's natural hormone balance. In the last 40 years we have seen a significant increase in hormone-related diseases, including declining sperm counts/infertility, and an increase in cancers of the endocrine (hormonal) & reproductive system (eg breast, endometrial, ovarian, testicular and thyroid). There has also been an increase in the number of boys being born with undescended testicles and a misplacement of the urethra (tube that carries the urine from the body).

 

Not too long ago, BPA was removed from plastic products because of safety concerns. The trouble is, manufacturers had to add something else in its place. In many cases, BPA has been removed from plastic products, but has been replaced with BPS or BPF - which allows a label on the product stating that it is 'BPA-Free'. The trouble is, both BPS & BPF are from the same class of chemicals as BPA - in fact, BPS was shown to exert a greater hormonal disrupting activity than BPA did.

 

Unfortunately, plastic manufacturing is a self-regulated industry, meaning that manufacturers can put chemicals in their products, unless they have been proven to be hazardous (eg carcinogens). There is an assumption that these are safe, unless proven otherwise.

 

Historically, and perhaps somewhat ironically, this was also the case for asbetsos, leaded petrol/paints, and tobacco...we now know differently.

 

Scary stuff! However, you can reduce your exposure to these chemicals. Use glass/stainless steel/pyrex bottles and containers where you can, and avoid the plastics. I believe you can get glass containers online that have a coating (on the outside, where they are not going to come into contact with food/drink) that help protect the glass from breaking. Never use plastic to reheat foods, as this can leach toxins from the plastic into your food.

Are you concerned about how plastic might have affected your health?

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Source: Bijlsma, N. (2015). Endocrine disrupting chemicals: BPA & beyond. Health Masters Live Environmental Health Masterclass.

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