Here is a new report and guide from the trusted, hardworking scientists, researchers and environmental health advocates over at the Environmental Working Group.
It is about the use of bisphenol A (BPA), a endocrine disrupting chemical, that is found in many of the products we use everyday like plastics and canned goods. BPA has been linked in numerous studies to reproductive system and brain development problems, as well as cancer, diabetes, and early onset puberty. The public has grown more and more aware of BPA use in plastic baby bottles (see this post), water bottles and food storage containers, but now the EWG is saying that BPA is showing up in infant formula in unsafe quantities.
This particular report shares the research findings from EWG’s experiments testing infant formula containers for BPA. What they found is shocking, that 1 in 16 bottle fed babies will be exposed to BPA in levels that are toxic in animal studies, and that all the U.S. manufacters of formula use BPA in their packaging. This information should be shared with every parent who is feeding their baby with formula.
To read the guide, click here
Click here for a quick summary of the findings.
At the site you’ll see the full report, the companies whose products were tested, and the outcomes, a downloadable guide, a way to take action, and lots of information about lessening the BPA your baby receives from the packaging (they say buying powdered formula is the best choice– this is one recommendation of many) of formula.
The report is also getting great media coverage, check out this clip from CNN American Morning.
The U.S. approach to the toxicity of products seems to occur in a vacuum. It is not the effect of one product on our babies’ bodies, but the accumulation of toxins from multiple sources. A baby can be exposed to this chemical from plastic baby bottles, food storage containers, and the formula inside the bottle, increasing the exposure to potentially unsafe levels. Our government needs to adopt a “precautionary approach” to dealing with chemicals in everyday products, such as suggested by U.S. PIRG and in Mark Shapiro’s book, Exposed: The Toxic Chemistry of Everyday Products and What’s at Stake for America’s Power. We know these chemicals can cause harm, especially with multiple exposures from a variety of sources. Why take the risk?
Hopefully, with lots of consumer pressure, and bad press, the formula companies will stop using BPA in the packaging of infant formula.
And to end on a good note: I just found this great information about Medela on EWG’s site: “Medela breast pump tubes, shields, and jars are BPA and phthalate free. This is important as pump parts withstand repeated washings in hot water.” Hoorah! Some good news for you pumping mamas out there.