By Kristin Yancy
I know I wasn’t the only toddler to yank Mom’s old Tupperware out of the bottom drawer in the kitchen, wearing the containers as hats or banging them like drums, making a huge mess in the process. Sadly, it’s been the health buzz of recent years that while those innocent looking plastic containers may have made for easy food storage, not to mention a source of endless entertainment for two-year-old-me, they may not be so good for your health.
Research has shown in recent years that the chemical BPA, or Bisphenol A, a manmade chemical that mimics the body’s natural hormones and can be found in some plastics [specifically polycarbonate plastics, generally recognizable as hard, clear plastics] may leak into food and/or drinking water when exposed to warm-to-boiling temperatures. Once in the body, BPA may affect endocrine health, reproductive health, and brain development.
There are some easy ways to avoid the risk potentially associated with plastic. In the kitchen, switch to glass containers to store leftover food (beware that boiling water will cause the glass to burst). Never put plastics in the microwave, and be cautious of eating hot foods off of plastic plates. Swap standard plastic water bottles for safer options. Look for BPA free bottles, or nix plastic all together in favor of stainless steel water bottles (try the lightweight options at Klean Kanteen). Bonus: a reusable water bottle is far better for the environment. If you do decide to hang onto plastic bottles, store them in cool or room temperature locations. Once aware, it’s surprising how simple it is to keep your plastic use at a minimum. Happy hydrating!