It was once assumed that Bisphenol-A (BPA) is safely broken down by the human body, new research from Health Canada suggests this isn’t true at all.
BPA is found in most food packaging. Because it exists so close to our food products, it is very easy for it to turn up in our bodies. Most people have been found to carry trace elements of BPA simply because it is in things we touch on a frequent basis. What’s more, BPA can enter our bodies through dust in the air or contaminated water. For years we’ve been told that our body is able to metabolize it but now it appears that our bodies turn BPA into a substance that promotes obesity.
Within six hours of exposure, our livers metabolize most of the BPA (80-90%) into a metabolite known as BPA Glucuronide.
In the study, researchers treated human and mouse cells with BPA Glucuronide and found that these treated cells had “a significant increase in lipid accumulation.” This is a problem because, BPA-Glucuronide is “not an inactive metabolite as previously believed, but is in fact, biologically active,” says Health Canada.
Scientists are unclear as to why our body processes this chemical the way that it does but believe that it may be because this compound mimics our body’s estrogen hormones. As for why it makes you gain and hold fat, Professor Thomas Zoeller of the University of Massachusetts, suggests that BPA Glucuronide may be “hitting certain receptors in cells”.
While the results of this study are disturbing, this is really just the beginning. This study looked at only one, isolated health effect. BPA Glucuronide may be impacting your health in ways we haven’t even imagined!
Steve Hentges, a spokesperson for the American Chemistry Council, defends BPA by saying that the doses used in the study were concentrations far higher than those produced by consumer exposure, and while this is indeed true, Health Canada is a regulatory agency and the fact that they are testing something that has been assumed safe is significant.
Laura Vandenburd, an assistant professor of environmental health at the University of Massachesetts Amhurst, says“Health Canada is a regulatory body and this is pretty forward thinking science. Hopefully this is a bell that can ring for scientists working for other regulatory agencies.”
What do you think? Do these results make you nervous? Do you think it is important for science to continue looking into chemicals we’ve previously been told were safe? We need to lobby for and demand neutral/unbiased information on products, be it food, or otherwise. Caveat Emptor: A company or spokesperson that speaks on behalf of their own products has an invested interest in their personal or company’s success and should not be considered a reliable source of information.
Source: Healthy Holistic Living