BPA Exposure During Early Pregnancy Linked to Infant Wheezing
Posted by Shifrah on Monday, May 02, 2011
We've been keeping a close eye on news about the relationship between BPA and asthma and allergies. We've talked about this subject before. (See BPA, Allergies, and Asthma and BPA, Triclosan Linked to Allergies.) A new study seems to provide further evidence of a connection between BPA exposure and respiratory trouble, reports

The research, presented at the Pediatric Academic Society's annual meeting, indicates that the higher the amount of BPA an expectant mother is exposed to early in her pregnancy, the more likely it is that her newborn will experience wheezing during the first three years of life. According to pediatrician Dr. Adam of Penn State’s Hershey Medical Center, "fetuses exposed to high levels of BPA at 16 weeks of gestation had an increased risk of transient wheeze. At six months the infants were twice as likely to wheeze; the condition persisted for three years then cleared up."

Women with higher BPA levels were involved with particular activities, including working as a cashier, eating canned foods, and being exposed to tobacco smoke.

There continue to be skeptics, however. Executive director of the Polycarbonate/BPA Global Group with the American Chemistry Council Steven Hentges says:

“This small-scale study, which has not been peer-reviewed or published in the scientific literature, is inherently incapable of establishing a cause-effect relationship between any causative agent and wheezing. The statistical associations reported in this study have not been verified or corroborated by any other study on BPA, which is one of the best tested substances in commerce. Based on the full weight of scientific evidence, government agencies around the world have determined that BPA is safe for use.”
Despite some critics' reluctance to admit that BPA could pose a threat, we believe that erring on the side of caution is the best option. To reduce BPA exposure, the Department of Health and Human Services and experts from the National Institutes of Health recommend the following:

• Purchase plastic containers marked at the bottom with recycle codes 1, 2, 4, 5, and 6. These plastics are unlikely to contain BPA.
• Look for the BPA-free label when shopping for food our other household items.
• Never microwave polycarbonate plastic food containers. High temperatures can break down the chemical and increase the chances that BPA will enter your food.
• Choose fresh or frozen vegetables to limit the amount of canned goods you consume. Can linings often contain BPA.
• Use glass, porcelain, or stainless steel to store food.
• Don't take receipts unless you have to.

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