BPA free plastic seems to be a given these days. Most plastic lunchboxes, water bottles, plastic cutlery are touted as BPA and many (including myself) will tend to go for BPA free without questioning it. But what exactly is BPA, why should we avoid it, and what are the alternatives?
What is BPA?
Bisphenol A (BPA), is a synthetic chemical used in the production of plastics since the 1950s and a known endocrine disruptor (chemicals that may interfere with the hormonal system and thereby produce harmful effects). Research on very low-dose exposure to BPA suggests an association with adverse health effects (source).
BPA free products seem like the norm now. But with the rise in BPA free products manufacturers began developing variations including BPS, BPF, BPAF, BPZ, BPP, BHPF. These new variations share the same basic chemical structure of a bisphenol.
How to avoid BPA
If you want to avoid BPA and BPA replacements – research is key. When buying products some of the most common replacements are - BPS, BPF, BPAF and diphenyl sulphone. These replacements, due to their chemical makeup may have the same implications as BPA products. BPA free isn’t always better. There’s still lots of research to be done on BPA alternatives but from the limited research so far it seems avoidance is the best approach.
To keep BPA and BPA alternatives exposure limited some suggestions include:
- Avoid putting plastics in dishwashers or the microwave,
- Get rid of old aged, scratched plastics
- Choose glass or steel containers over aluminium cans (when possible)
What’s best for our little ones?
Avoiding nasty plastics from a young age can help us all live a more sustainable, healthier life. If you’re wondering what products are best for your children then Sonny Bear recommends:
Made from stainless steel and BPA-free PP silicone.
Stainless steel water bottles are rust, corrosion and stain-resistant. And of course, chemical-free. They require fewer resources to make and are more sustainable. Stainless steel doesn’t retain flavours so whatever liquid is inside can be washed away for next use.
Silicone is a non-toxic polymer mostly made from silica. Just like stainless steel, it’s odour- and stain-resistant and very easy to clean making it the ideal option for baby products.
These stainless steel lunch boxes come with a BPA-free silicone ring inside the lid, which seals airtight to keep food fresh. They will last for years to come and your kids can avoid food being exposed to chemicals.
Besides being a more environmentally friendly approach to lunchtime Fabelab products are also very, very adorable to look at!