Plastic water bottles are all around us: no matter if we use disposable or reusable ones. However, those products are recently having bad fame, as people relate them to health issues, toxicity, and organ harm.
But what is the truth? Are all kinds of plastic bad for us? We will reveal the answers in this article.
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Are plastic bottles safe?
Not every plastic bottle on the market is categorized either as safe or toxic. However, according to ORB research, the majority of plastic bottles release microplastics into the liquid/food that is stored inside them.
A National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey study showed that the release of microplastics is typical for bottles, which contain Bisphenol A (also called BPA). In fact, the same study reported that detectable BPA levels were found in 93% of the urine samples of their randomly-selected research group.
But what exactly is BPA and why is it present in our water?
Bisphenol A is a chemical that is used for the production of plastic and epoxy resins for food and drink packaging, medical devices, equipment, and other items. This substance contributes to harder and more resistant plastic materials, and that is why it’s widely used in bottle production to ensure longer shelf life and stronger protection from external factors.
However, with the time and temperature changes, BPA is released from the packaging into the food/liquids and eventually ends up in our bodies.
As this substance is a chemical, it’s related to having severe harmful effects on health. Medical specialists claim that health issues evolve and become more pronounced if we have been exposed to BPA for a longer period of time than usual. This happens if we mainly eat canned food, store our food in plastic containers, store and drink water from plastic bottles (either disposable or reusable), or heath the bottles and containers to high temperatures.
Keep in mind that some brands are now producing bottles without BPA. Those are usually baby bottles, however, every product that is manufactured without this harmful substance is indicated to be “BPA FREE” on the label. So that you can easily recognize them.
What are the potential harms?
A study posted in The US national library of Medicine explains what the risks of BPA exposure are:
When ingested with foods and drinks, Bisphenol A is metabolized in the liver, which helps most of the chemical to excrete out of the body with the urine. But the amount which remains in the body has a direct influence on the estrogen receptors (which synthesize “female” hormones).
As a result, the BPA microplastics are related to health issues like:
- Infertility (both male and female). This is due to the over-or underproduction of estrogen, which automatically results in hormonal misbalance.
- Hormone-dependent tumors (such as breast and prostate cancer). BPA either stimulates the formation of such tumors, causes cancer excesses, or complicates the treatment process.
- Metabolic disorders (such as PCOS, insulin resistance, and others). Hormonal imbalance caused by BPA results in complications of such health conditions.
- Other endocrine disorders. As the different hormones are extremely dependent on each other, changes in estrogen may influence the production of other hormones, such as progesterone, TSH, melatonin, cortisol, adrenaline, insulin testosterone, etc.
Plastic bottles and containers are not as harmless as we think they are, because of only one chemical. Hormonal issues that BPA causes are a severe health condition, which can last for years and eventually lead to decreased quality of life and chronic illnesses.
The good news is that we CAN prevent BPA from negatively influencing our lives! Just look for BPA free products!
Disclaimer: I am not a doctor, and I do not aim to give any medical advice. The information presented in this article is based on scientific research and personal experience and aims to give information about the topic.