FDA Announces “Some Concern” over Bisphenol A Health Effects

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The American Nurses Association (ANA) provides the following annoucement received from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA):

The FDA announced in its Update on Bisphenol A for Use in Food Contact Applications, January 2010, that recent studies support “some concern about the potential effects of Bisphenol A (BPA) on the brain, behavior, and prostate gland in fetuses, infants and young children”. The FDA supports reduction of human exposure to BPA. They are advocating for additional studies on BPA and its effects on human health. They will open a public docket, which will provide the public 60 days to comment on BPA. The FDA also supports changing the regulatory framework for the oversight of BPA to allow a quick response to protect the public’s health, if required.

ANA applauds these efforts of the FDA to educate the American public on BPA, reduce the public’s exposure to BPA, and to streamline the mechanisms to remove harmful chemicals from use, but feels stronger measures are required, such as a ban on BPA in food and beverage containers.

ANA supports the Ban Poisonous Additives Act (S. 593/H.R. 1523) which would ban BPA from food and beverage containers. To show support, in October, 2009, ANA signed on to a letter urging the FDA to conduct an impartial evaluation on the science of BPA, including low dose BPA exposure studies by government and academic scientists, not only industry-funded scientists.

Initially developed as a synthetic estrogen, BPA is now used as a common additive in polycarbonate plastics and epoxy resins.  BPA is found in many products including drink containers, water bottles, liners of canned goods, baby bottles, and children’s sippy cups.  BPA can migrate out of food and drink containers, particularly when heated, and then be consumed by humans. Studies show evidence that BPA exposure, even in extremely small doses, is linked to a multitude of health issues, including some forms of cancer.

To further protect yourself, visit the National Toxicology Program’s Web site at www.niehs.nih.gov/health/docs/bpa-factsheet.pdf to learn how to decrease your BPA exposure.