Beyond the damaging environmental impact of plastic are the health implications associated with ingesting, or even just being in contact with plastic. As we delve deeper into the world of plastic, we uncover the negative influence that plastic may have on your hormones, endocrine system and overall health. Read on to learn about BPA plastic, and how and why you should avoid it for the benefit of your own health.
What is BPA?
BPA is the synthetic chemical most commonly used in making plastics. It can be found in everything from plastic water bottles and bags, glad wrap and lunch containers; through to the inside of tin cans and disposable coffee cups, your bub’s sippy cup and plastic toys.
Unfortunately BPA can leach from these products, most commonly when they become worn down, scratched, heated, frozen or are left out in the sun. Once leached, BPA can make its way into your body either through ingestion (i.e. drinking water out of a plastic bottle or disposable coffee cup, or eating food out of a plastic container), or absorption through skin contact (i.e. holding a receipt or other plastic product).
BPA has been researched and linked to many nasty health conditions including heart disease, cancer and asthma. Furthermore, BPA is considered to be an endocrine-disruptor, which essentially means it can wreak havoc on your natural hormone levels… No good at all. As a xenoestrogen, BPA mimics the sex hormone oestrogen and can lead to hormonal issues including:
- Oestrogen dominance symptoms such as heavy periods, weight gain around the hips and thighs, and PMS.
- Increased risk of breast cancer.
- Increased risk of ovarian cancer.
- Fertility issues in men and women.
- Impaired fetus development.
- Libido and erectile issues in men.
- Early onset puberty in young females.
How can I avoid hormone-disrupting BPA?
First and foremost, learning about your own hormones is a great way to understand your unique personal hormonal makeup, and thus the impact that little bit of plastic that sneaks its way into your lifestyle might be having on your health.
Our friends at Eve Health have found that 87% of women they surveyed experience signs of hormone imbalances that impact them on a regular basis. The symptoms of hormone imbalance can show up in a number of ways including low energy or fatigue, menstrual issues, weight gain, brain fog, skin issues and so many more. Whether you do or don’t experience hormone-related symptoms, learning about your hormones will help you to understand your health on a deeper level so you can look after yourself in the best way possible…
Eve Health exists to help you to understand your body through insight into your hormones, empowering you with tips around how to nurture yourself effectively through diet, exercise, lifestyle and nutrition.
Small Changes = Big Results
While modern living makes it challenging to completely avoid plastic, there are plenty of ways you can minimise your contact with plastic. Here are our top tips & tricks for avoiding BPA:
- Stop buying and using plastic bottles. Get yourself a reusable drink bottle to refill and take with you wherever you go.
- Reduce the amount of food you buy in plastic packaging and instead opt for refillable bulk options – check out our full range online here, available for nationwide plastic-free delivery.
- Replace your takeaway cup with a reusable travel mug.
- Opt for glass jars or a stainless steel lunchbox to hold your lunch or snacks (or even takeaways).
- Eliminate plastic food wrap from your home. Honey Wraps are handmade, smell delicious, last for ages and have so many creative uses.
- Buy cheap spray-free or organic veggies at a local market and use produce bags to keep them fresh. As well as reducing plastic exposure, this will reduce your exposure to chemicals sprayed on non-organic veggies and will also support local farmers.
Not only are we passionate about the environment here at GoodFor, we are also passionate about personal health and we are on a crusade to banish plastic where possible from your daily routine. We can be thought of as New Zealander’s home of plastic-free products, helping you to reinvent your routine minus the plastic and with ease.
Images credit @thisislagom.