Another potential explanation for childhood obesity? Researchers from NYU’s medical school have found a correlation between the amount of bisphenol A (BPA) in children’s urine and their body mass index. The study was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).
What you need to know:
BPA is a chemical compound used as a building block of the linings that are found in plastic bottles and aluminum cans. More than seven billion pounds of BPA are produced annually for food packaging among other uses. Some of it ends up in the food we ingest. BPA behaves like the hormone estrogen – once it enters the body it disturbs the normal operation of certain genes. BPA is removed from the body by urination, but not all.
22% of the children with the highest levels of BPA were found to be obese. Only 10% of the kids with the lowest levels were obese. The study examined information from over 2800 children aged 6-19. The majority had some level of BPA
Estrogen mimicking chemicals are potentially harmful even at very low doses, and one potential explanation for the obesity correlation is that BPA somehow triggers a metabolism change in kids that makes it easier for their bodies to gain weight.
What to do at the supermarket:
BPA does not appear as an ingredient on a food label because it is part of the packaging, not the food. Almost any canned product you are holding contains BPA. Eden and Muir Glen have BPA free products.
Please remember that there ARE alternatives to canned food. If fresh fruit and veggies are in season, opt for those. Check the freezers for bags of frozen vegetables.