Harvard BPA Study Looks at Exposure from Hard Water Bottles

Dangerous estrogen mimicker, <"http://www.yourlawyer.com/practice_areas/toxic_substances">bisphenol A (BPA) is making headlines again for its adverse health effects. According to the University Chronicle, the controversial chemical was found in participants who drank from hard water bottles, citing a Harvard School of Public Health study.

In only one week of exposure to drinking water out of these bottles, the participants’ BPA levels increased by an astounding two-thirds. Balsy Kasi, a professor of Environmental and Technical studies at SCSU noted what we have long been saying, that BPA is an endocrine disrupter hinder hormonal processes, wrote the University Chronicle.

BPA, which the University Chronicle says is not found in soft water bottles, is polycarbonate plastic byproduct found in a wide variety of consumer products, including hard water bottles, aluminum can linings, some dental sealants, and sippy cups, to name some. Polycarbonate can also be found, said Kasi, in over 100 common items such as appliances and windshields and can be identified by its recycling number—7—on the bottom of bottles.

BPA has long been connected to a wide variety of adverse effects, including increased risks of brain, reproductive, cardiac, and immune system diseases and disorders; problems with liver function testing; interruptions in chemotherapy treatment; and links with serious health problems. Studies have overwhelmingly found BPA to have negative effects at doses lower than the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) current standards; retention in the body longer than was previously believed; leeching into liquids being held in containers regardless of the containers’ temperature; and longer lasting damage, which can be passed to future generations.

Kasi explained that, in water bottles, BPA is transmitted through heat or scratches, according to the University Chronicle. BPA can also easily flake, and it is in those flakes, where the chemical can make its way into liquids that are then carried into our bodies, the University Chronicle added.

This study, conducted at Harvard, was among the fist to use human test subjects and testing BPA urine levels. Most tests have used pregnant rats, said Kasi, explained the University Chronicle. Trace amounts of BPA have been detected in most—over 90 percent—of the United States population.

Although not yet begun, another study, funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment act, is expected to give a larger view of the effect of BPA on human beings, said Kasi, who added that the funding has been obtained by the group and it is now looking for study volunteers, reported the University Chronicle.

Industry has long argued that scientists and consumer advocates are exaggerating the adverse effects of the plastic-hardening, estrogenic chemical, continually citing two industry studies. But, points out the LA Times, previously, over 200 peer-reviewed studies have linked BPA to health problems.

Meanwhile, laws are either in effect or coming into effect in coming months in a variety of states and counties in the United States in which the sale of certain products containing polycarbonate has been banned, for instance, baby bottles food containers, and sippy cups. Canada was the first country to announce plans to ban BPA, calling it a toxin and some retailers and manufacturers have announced plans to stop making products containing the chemical.

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