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Bisphenol A Tied to Health Problems

Study Shows Plastic Chemical Linked to Heart Disease, Diabetes; Industry Says No Proof Bisphenol A Is to Blame

Industry Responds continued...

The American Chemistry Council replied by email with a statement underscoring the limitations mentioned in the study. Because of those limitations, "this new  study cannot support a conclusion that bisphenol A causes any disease," Steven G. Hentges, PhD, of the American Chemistry Council's Polycarbonate/BPA Global Group, states in a news release. "The weight of scientific evidence continues to support the conclusion of governments worldwide that bisphenol A is not a significant health concern at the trace levels present in some consumer products," Hentges states.

The council doesn't totally dismiss the study, but it sees the study as being "primarily useful for generating hypotheses that can be tested with more appropriate experiments or analyses," states the council's news release.

The North American Metal Packaging Alliance (NAMPA) also emailed a statement, which points out that study participants only provided one urine sample, and that the body "quickly and efficiently" eliminates bisphenol A through urine. "To suggest that BPA concentrations measured at a single point in time during the process of elimination from the body correlate in any way directly with serious chronic disorders is entirely unsupported and an unsubstantiated scientific leap," states NAMPA, adding that "while the study raises interesting questions, it provides no scientifically defensible answers" and requires further research.

 

Nutritionist's View

The CSPI's Schardt notes that in lab tests on animals, the biggest risks appeared to be to young animals, but Melzer's team found risks in adults, including people too old to have been exposed to bisphenol A as kids.

"So that's a mystery: If they were being harmed by BPA, when did this happen?" asks Schardt.

Like Melzer, Schardt calls for more research.

"One can't expect the government to make a 180-degree turn based on one study like this," says Schardt. "It underscores the need for more research on BPA. We need to get to the bottom of this, we need to find out what, if anything, BPA is doing to us."

Schardt says there's not enough evidence yet to call for a ban on bisphenol A, but he suggests that parents may want to consider using bisphenol A-free containers for babies and kids.

As for adults, "you don't really want to make drastic changes in your lifestyle based on one study," says Schardt. "Of course, people are free to try to avoid BPA but again, they're not going to avoid it entirely because it's just everywhere."

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