FAQs: Bisphenol A (BPA)
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What is Bisphenol A (BPA)?
Bisphenol A is a hormone disrupter used to make polycarbonate plastic (hard clear plastic). Bisphenol A can be found in baby bottles, water bottles, canned food liners, and sippy cups. Human exposure occurs primarily through ingestion: diet, sucking/mouthing plastics, and dermal contact. Adverse health effects include prostate cancer, breast cancer, miscarriages, birth defects, early puberty, low sperm count, hyperactivity and aggressiveness. Traces of BPA can be found in more than 90% of the U.S. population.
How can I reduce my exposure to BPA?
Eco Tips for Child Care Providers:
- When possible, avoid polycarbonate, especially for children's food and drinks.
- Use clear silicone nipples. Avoid latex rubber nipples, as they can cause allergic reactions and can contain impurities linked to cancer.
- Use glass bottles when possible.
- If using plastic bottles, only use bottles labeled “BPA Free”. Avoid clear, hard plastic bottles marked with a 7 or “PC.”
- Avoid plastic bottle liners, as the soft plastic liners may leach chemicals into formula and breast milk, especially when heated.
- If using infant formula, purchase powdered formula instead of liquid formula.
- BPA can leach into liquid formula sold in metal cans. Canadian tests show no BPA leaching into powdered formula. The same brands are sold in the U.S., making powdered formula a low-risk for BPA contamination.
- Avoid using plastics that aren’t identified on the packaging.
- Look for plastic products that state “no bisphenol A (BPA).”
- Never heat or microwave food or drink in any plastic containers.
Additional Resources on BPA: