Some Plastic Baby Bottles May Be Harmful For Babies

by Medindia Content Team on  February 13, 2008 at 3:00 PM General Health News   - G J E 4
Some Plastic Baby Bottles May Be Harmful For Babies
Tests on several baby bottles have showed, that at high temperatures, they release a toxic chemical that could harm babies.  A new report released by American and Canadian environmental health groups, shows that bisphenol A, or BPA, linked to deadly illnesses in lab animals, was released when baby bottles were heated at high temperatures. 95 percent of all baby bottles on the market are made with bisphenol A, or BPA. 

 Researchers tested 19 baby bottles purchased in nine U.S. states and Canada including Avent, Dr. Brown, Evenflo, Disney, Gerber, and Playtex.  When the bottles were heated to 175 degrees F (80 degrees C), they all leached BPA at about five to seven parts per billion. 

Health advocate Mike Schade from The Center for Health, Environment and Justice explains, "When bottles are used extensively over time and when they're heated, higher levels of this chemical leaches, exposing young infants to elevated levels of this unnecessary toxic chemical."

Bisphenol A, or BPA, is a synthetic female sex hormone estrogen.  It is used in making hard, polycarbonate plastic.  BPA is used in CDs, in automotive parts, toys, water bottles and in the resin lining applied to the insides of food and soft drink cans.

The use of BPA has come under attack from many directions, following suggestions that trials on lab rats have shown  them prone to prostate and breast cancer, diabetes and obesity.  It is feared that BPA could trigger hormonal, neurological, and behavioral problems in human beings.

Environmental groups have called for a ban on all uses of BPA in plastic containers, especially in baby feeding bottles.  "The reproductive system is developing, the brain is developing, the immune system is developing," David Carpenter, director of the Institute for Health and the Environment at the University at Albany, said Thursday on behalf of the environmental agencies.  "Knowing that," he said, "it is absolutely obscene to expose infants to BPA." 

The Food & Drug Administration (FDA) and the infant formula industry that follows federal packaging guidelines maintain that the use of BPA is legal and safe.

Canada's federal health department Health Canada is studying BPA to see if there is some evidence of toxicity. Further report on how much of the chemical leaches out of polycarbonate baby bottles and infant formula cans is expected in May.

In the United States, nine states have introduced legislation that would restrict its use in children's products, including baby bottles.

Source: Medindia

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