Plastic Water Bottles and BPA

Plastic Water Bottles and BPA

Katherine Interiano, Staff Writer

According to, Americans used about 50 billion plastic water bottles last year. If you have ever seen a label on a water bottle with the abbreviation “BPA-free”, then you’re in luck. BPA stands for Bisphenol A, which is a carbon based chemical synthetic compound used to make certain plastics and resins since the 1960s. According to the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences Bisphenol A is most common in water bottles, but it can also be found in infant bottles, compact discs, impact-resistant safety equipment, and in some medical devices.

The United States Food and Drug Administration (USFDA) had previously declared BPA as safe, but in 2010, they corrected that mistake. As stated in, the FDA maintains that studies using standardized toxicity tests have shown BPA to be safe at the current low levels of human exposure. But based on other evidence – largely from animal studies – the FDA expressed ‘some concern’ about the potential effects of BPA on the brain, behavior, and prostate glands in fetuses, infants, and young children.

The most serious effects BPA can cause is an increase of growth in fibroid tumors and breast cancer. Also, it can interfere with fertility treatments, and it is also linked with the development of diabetes or a heart attack. BPA obviously has the capability to be fatal, if one is overexposed to it.

However, just like everything else, there are ways to help reduce your BPA exposure.

First and most obvious of all is to avoid drinking out of plastic bottles. If anything, it’s best to find one with a label mentioning that it’s BPA-free. Secondly, if drinking out of a plastic bottle is inevitable, then try not to drink it if it has been under freezing temperatures or very hot temperatures. Lastly, store leftovers in glass containers instead of plastic ones. All of these tips can help prevent the BPA from contaminating food or drinks.