Bisphenol A or BPA – Scary stuff in food!

There is a jungle of different poisons out there that will affect us in different ways. Bisphenol A or BPA seems to be the latest in the debate. With all rights. Hugh Taylor is a Yale University physician, professor and researcher and has studies the substance. He says: “It has permanent, lasting effects.” and “The adult exposure is concerning, but I think the foetal exposure is worse.” So, it’s not enough that it’s dangerous for adults, it is even worse for kids and especially unborn children. Taylor’s studies shows that the chemical will alter how our DNA works, though an epigenetic change.

The first you should do to avoid Bisphenol A or BPA is to avoid plastic and bottles containing the chemical. These are marked with number 7 in the bottom. Also avoid those marked with number 3. But, Shannon Swan, Professor in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology and Director of the Center for Reproductive Epidemiology at the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry, says that the exposure is much more substantial that from plastic bottles.

The second thing you should be doing is avoid canned or tinned food.

Why is Bisphenol A used in canned food? Well, the cans and tins have a thin plastic layer on the inside containing the chemical. The reason is to prevent the taste from the metal entering the food and also stop bacteria attacking the food.

BPA or Bisphenol A is present in virtually all cans and tins. Easier said than done.  But make an attempt at least. An alternative is to buy dried beans and boil them yourself. Another is to buy food on glass jars. But, Bisphenol A is present even there, on the inside of the metal lids on the jars!

What can you do instead?

A lot of food producers in Europe are actively working with finding alternatives. The environmentally agency (Naturskyddsföreningen) in Sweden recommends Tetra Pak as an alternative.
I contacted Tetra Pak, who confirms that their packaging does not contain any Bisphenol A. “We can confirm that Bisphenol A or any other Bisphenols are not used by Tetra Pak during manufacturing of our packaging material. It is not used as a substance in any of the materials that make up the layer or openings in our packaging”.

SIG Combiblock AB, another manufacturer of similar packaging to Tetra Pak also claims their material is free from Bisphenol A and other dangerous substances.

So, until someone discovers that Tetra Paks are poisonous, that’s what I’ll be buying!

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