Recently over a vegan lunch, a girlfriend of mine told me of her favorite way to make a baked potato. She covers it in plastic wrap and puts in the microwave. I cringed, and held back the urge to lecture her over our tofu laden lunch.

There may not be evidence that plastic wrap leaches toxic chemicals when heated, but there’s plenty of evidence that other plastics do, and it’s probably not a good idea to have it draped over your food while super hot. BPA (bisphenol A) a chemical found in many plastics, is believed by scientists to pose serious health risks when leached into food products.  The FDA has not had the opportunity to “fully investigate” the findings on their own, but lucky for us they have decided maybe they should take another look.

They announced last week they would conduct studies over concerns that products such as baby bottles, water bottles, and microwavable containers might be poisoning people. According the center for disease control BPA is found in 90% of Americans urine samples, and since this chemical is not naturally occurring, we know where that came from. For example, when you buy a refrigerated bottle of water, how do you know that it was not sitting for days in a hot truck, and the water is not full of the tasteless, odorless BPA? I can’t help but think of the recent film Wall-E, where the whole planet was so toxic that nothing could grow. There’s so much plastic out there, that it’s even difficult for scientists to study the effects on humans because we are exposed to so many toxins, how do you isolate?

The Soy Connection

Three years ago I became  vegetarian thinking this was the humane and healthy choice. That’s until I started hearing about soy and estrogen. There’s something in soy just like BPA (in plastic) that acts as an estrogen simulator in the body. According to some studies this is a big risk, especially for women (think breast cancer, ovarian cancer, and other hormone related issues.)  The irony is for years I drank a giant bottle of water (figi & volvic) and ate tons of soy, thinking all the while these were brilliant choices. It makes me wonder if this is how smokers felt when they found out cigarettes killed. It seemed so innocent, and hip. The jury is still out on soy (search soy, health risks), but my fear is that in my effort to live toxin free, I’ve really been pumping all these fake estrogen’s into my body that will lead to a mastectomy in my future. I’m going to the doctor next week.

If You Have A Dog Watch Out For These

With all these risks swirling in my head I started thinking of other places that a cancer might be ready to invade. Watching my dog play with his favorite vinyl chewy toy, my heart sank. Is this thing poisoning my dog too? Just like the kids toys, they come from China, red flag number one. Then I did a google search, and surprise surprise…

“Nov. 25, 2008 — A consumer watchdog group is urging parents to avoid buying soft plastic toys this holiday season because of a risk that the toys may contain toxic chemicals.”

If the chemicals are in the kids toys then they are definitely in the dog toys, which barely anyone bats an eye over. The chemical in this kind of plastic is different from the BPA, but non the less, pose similar documented health risks.

What to do?

We all know the FDA has not done a very good job protecting us from a wide variety of things imported into this country, and in some cases grown within. And since it appears they are at least 5-10 years behind on the science, or burying it because of insider interests, we the people have to do our homework. The unfortunate thing is that the toxins are everywhere, I even read recently that studies done on cows near a plastic manufacturing plant are showing altered DNA. This is for another blog. In the meantime, I’m opting for a sensory deprivation tank. Which of course, as luck would have it is made of plastic too.

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Tags: Plastic in the News

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