In a previous blog post, we discussed a research study that established a link between bisphenol A exposure in children and an increased risk for certain mental health problems and illnesses later in life. It seems that this study and others like it have finally prompted an increased response from a government agency.
Although the use of BPA is banned in products like baby bottles, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has not yet taken steps to restrict its use in other products, such as in the lining of metal cans or in other types of plastic products.
Earlier this month, the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment introduced a proposal to add BPA to its list of "Reproductive Toxins" under Proposition 65, a law enacted in 1986 to protect consumers from toxins. By adding BPA to this list of restricted ingredients, California will require manufacturers of products to provide a warning on the packaging of any product that contains BPA in a concentration that exceeds pre-established safety levels.
While BPA's change in status would be a step in the right direction, many environmental health advocates feel the law is not strict enough and that the levels are set so high that many products that are laden with BPA will not be required to bear warning labels. Still, there is hope that the state's actions may prompt other states to follow it lead and perhaps pressure the FDA to reexamine the safety of BPA.
In the meantime, you can help to decrease your own exposure to BPA in your kitchen by reducing your intake of canned foods, switching to bamboo and other non-plastic cooking utensils and opt for products made from Bonterra or nontoxic recycled plastic.
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