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Shannon Koehle: Jury Still Out On the Safety of Baby Bottles

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By Shannon Koehle
EmpowHer.com's Health Reporter

Plastic baby bottle have been used for many generations, but it is still unknown how safe they truly are.

When manufactured, a large portion of baby bottles are made with polycarbonate plastic. However, this plastic is combined with Bisphenol A (BPA), a toxic chemical, to increase heat resistance and durability of the product.

The problem arises when bottles are heated. Heating the product causes trace amounts of BPA to leach into the liquid contained within the bottle.

Despite this information, the Center for Disease Control, U.S. Food and Drug Administration, International Food Information Council Foundation, and the American Chemical Council remain confident that bottles will not adversely affect infants or children.

As the FDA says, “We believe there is a large body of evidence that indicates that FDA-regulated products containing BPA currently on the market are safe and that exposure levels to BPA from food contact materials, including for infants and children, are below those that may cause health affects.”

However, numerous medical professional as well the National Institutes of Health National Toxicology Program disagree.

According to a statement released April 2008, “The NTP concurs with the conclusion of the CERHR (Center for the Evaluation of risks to Human Reproduction) Expert Panel on Bisphenol A that there is some concern for neural and behavioral effects in fetuses, infants, and children at current human exposure.”

BPA in large amounts is known to cause endocrine disruptions, miscarriages, prostate cancer, altered brain development, diabetes, hypertension, and more, reports the Center for Health, Environment, and Justice.

Though there is no certainty that BPA will cause negative health reactions in infants and children, many are taking actions to prevent all exposure risks.

The Canadian government has passed a vote to restrict the use of BPA and prohibit the use of BPA in all plastic baby bottles.

Similarly, as of May 2008, the California Senate Health Committee banned all detectable levels of BPA from toys and childcare products sold within the state.

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