What in the world, you might ask, does eating canned food have to do with getting pregnant? Well, it’s a risk. As is drinking anything that comes in a can.
You see, to prevent corrosion, companies coat the inside of food and beverage cans with the plastic Bisphenol A (BPA), which, despite their denials, leaches into the contents. BPA wreaks havoc with reproduction, doing a number on the ovaries that affects normal ovulation and, being an equal opportunity ravager of dreams, lowering sperm counts. And should you overcome those odds, you may have a low-birth-weight baby, with all the problems that can entail.
How can this happen? BPA mimics estrogen in our bodies, which knocks out our natural estrogen and throws the entire endocrine system for a big-time loop. Besides low sperm counts, men can grow breasts and get prostate cancer, little boys go through life with low testosterone counts, little girls experience puberty while their age is still a single digit, while women get to cope with PMS, menopause difficulties and on and on.
BPA also impairs learning, increases your chances of obesity, messes with your immunity, and makes you prone to heart disease, cancer, liver damage and diabetes. And I could go on.
And I’m probably talking about you. A CDC study (1988-1994) found BPA in the urine of 95% of people tested.
Although the possible health hazards of BPA started surfacing in the 1930s and picked up enormous speed since 1997–with more than 100 studies–the FDA says BPA is just swell, as safe as it can be.
But the bad news began oozing out, and canning companies started to move away from BPA. Yeah for them! Don’t you love it when companies respond to customer concerns?
The chemical companies, who make big bucks with BPA, don’t like the no-BPA idea. In June, 2009, their lobbyists met in Washington DC to develop a counteraction. They decided to persuade young mothers and students that BPA was safe, using, preferably, a young, pregnant model. And they came up with a list of scare tactics to convince consumers that losing BPA would spell disaster. They finished off by icing this devilish cake of cynicism with a decision to focus on minorities and the poor–apparently believing they’d be easy marks.
Your response to their money-grabbing cynicism is simple: Take away their market and put them out of the BPA business.
Let’s talk about how people just like you can do this.
To get BPA out of canned food and drinks, buy frozen or fresh, not canned, foods. And call canning companies to express your concerns. They’ll move quickly once they hear from enough people. Here are some numbers:
• Del Monte is at 800-543-3090
• Nestle USA (Libby’s, etc) is at 800-225-2270
• Pepsi’s at 914-253-2000
• Coke’s at 800-438-2653
• Google all the other name you see in your pantry, get a number (or e-mail address) from their web site and express your concerns about BPA.
Unfortunately, we also encounter BPA in plastic. Plastic baby bottles, for instance, since we obviously want to feed our babies the equivalent of a few birth control pills a day. Use glass baby bottles.
Most plastic wrap comes as BPA. Don’t have anything to do with it, and for heaven’s sake, don’t even think about using it in the microwave where the heat creates massive leaching into your food.
And there’s more! Plastic juice, soda and water bottles typically contain either BPA or phthalate, another disastrous plastic. Plastic jars, too, even the jars used for nutritional supplements. Check the bottom of plastic bottles, jars and other containers for the number in the triangular recycle code. 1, 3 or 7 is bad. 2, 4 or 5 is okay. 6 is Styrofoam, which is also okay.
Running these plastics through a dishwasher cycle or two–or many–multiplies the problem. They develop little cuts and rough spots in which BPA (and phthalate) can raise the damage level even higher.
Some companies create safe containers. Tupperware has always used safe plastics. Rubbermaid’s good, too, although I have some problematic lids.
In 2008, the U.S. National Institutes of Health and Canada Health finally began to murmur about possible problems. No action, though. If you want action any time soon, it’s kinda up to you.
What else isn’t new?
Bette Dowdell is not a doctor, nor does she purport to be one. As a patient who’s spent the past 30+ years successfully studying, applying and finally overcoming health issues, she has a lot of information to share. Her best credential is that doctors tell her she’s doing ‘too well’ for somebody with pituitary problems. Get plugged in to her free information at http://TooPoopedToParticipate.com. If you’re dragging your patooty, and the doctor says you’re just fine, this is the place.