- Abnormalities in brain and liver function;
- Altered behavior of more than 200 genes;
- Birth defects to the male and female reproductive systems, including permanent changes to the genital tract, damage to eggs, increased anogenital distance in both sexes, sperm reduction, and early sexual maturity;
- Breast cells that are pre-disposed to cancer and changes in mammary gland tissue;
- Cardiovascular disease;
- Change to infants’ behavior and brains (According to watchdog organization the Environmental Working Group, BPA “affects the developing brain and reproductive systems of animals exposed to low doses during pregnancy and early life”);
- Chromosome damage;
- Disrupted endocrine system;
- Interrupted cell function in fetuses, infants, and children;
- Mood disorders;
- Prostate cells that are more sensitive to cancer and increased prostate weight. 1
First, when you’re drinking your recommended 64-fluid ounces of water a day, opt for a drinking glass and pitch your plastic water bottle.
As much as possible, limit your use of canned foods.
Use as few plastic containers as possible, and never heat your food in plastic containers. If you must use plastic containers, only use Plastics #1, #2, and #4. (Avoid #7 and polycarbonate plastics.) Washing plastic containers in hot water (both handwashing or in a dishwasher) is a really bad idea, too, because when the plastic heats up, it leaches much more BPA. 6
Throw your receipts away as soon as possible. If you do need to keep a receipt, store it in a resealable plastic bag.
Once your baby’s born and you start drinking your morning cup of coffee again, try to use a French press instead of a plastic coffee maker.
There is some great news, though! Last month, USA Today reported that eating fresh, organic fruits and vegetables reduces exposure to BPA. A recent study proved that people get exposed to BPA by food packaging. 7
As a mother, I found out about the dangers of BPA when I was halfway through my pregnancy with Little Sister. (And there I thought I had been making healthy, homemade meals … using canned foods as ingredients.) I know Big Brother was exposed to a lot more BPA than he should have been. Imagine my horror when I researched BPA and thought back to how I faithfully drank water ALL DAY, EVERY DAY from a polycarbonate bottle. Take it from me: these recommendations may add more work to your already busy nine months, but your developing baby’s health is completely worth your effort and precaution!
4. “What You Can Do.” Making Our Milk Safe.
5. “Bisphenol A: Toxic plastics chemical in canned food.” Environmental Working Group.
6. “Plastic (Not) Fantastic: Food Containers Leach a Potentially Harmful Chemical.” David Biello. Scientific American. Feb. 19, 2008.
7. “Study: Fresh food diet cuts exposure to chemical BPA.” Wendy Koch. USA Today. March 30, 2011.