Current Topics in Nursing « Nurse CE,Continuing Medical Education, LPN Courses,Online Nursing School

By: Nurses Network  09-12-2011
Keywords: Nursing School

Current Topics in Nursing « Nurse CE,Continuing Medical Education, LPN Courses,Online Nursing School

The global health issue from the World Health Organization (WHO) list of health topics I selected was food safety, in particular, BISPHENOL A (BPA).
WHO has made progress, but the US is lagging behind in protecting citizens from this danger.
For several years there has been concern BPA is a carcinogen. In fact, studies have linked BPA exposure to breast and prostate cancer, infertility, early puberty in girls, obesity and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. The CDC reports 93% of Americans have detectable levels of BPA in their bodies. As a result, other countries have banned the use of BPA. In the US a number of states have banned plastic baby bottles due to the disproportionate levels created when infants drink from BPA containing bottles.
BPA is often used in clear, shatterproof plastics, such as baby bottles and food-storage containers, as well as the liners of metal food cans. BPA can leach from plastic and cans into food. Singer Cheryl Crowe, a breast cancer survivor, cautions consumers not to leave bottled drinks in the car, where the heat can facilitate the transfer of BPA from the bottle into the beverage.
BPA can also be found on thermal paper such as receipts, prescription labels, airline boarding passes and even lottery tickets. Such levels can be 250 to 1,000 times higher than products already known to contain BPA. A Swiss study found BPA transfers easily from thermal paper to skin and penetrates to a depth that can’t easily be washed off. This can have tremendous impact on workers who handle multiple papers per shift. As an ICU nurse I wonder if this is true of the thermal paper we use as well. As a consumer I wonder about the thermal receipt which may come in contact with my food purchase.
Exposure to BPA from canned foods and other food packaging can be significantly reduced with simple dietary changes. A study tracked five families for eight days in January 2010. Urine samples were collected after family members ate normally (canned foods, canned sodas, frozen dinners, foods microwaved in plastic). Participants then switched to a modified diet of fresh organic meals and snacks for three days, avoiding foods packaged in plastic or cans and storing food in glass and stainless steel containers. Urinary BPA levels decreased by more than 60% on average!!
It’s the same old story; fairly simple changes in people’s lives lower BPA exposure. Switching to fresh foods decreased BPA levels very quickly.

Carpenter, S. (2011, March 30). Want to reduce BPA exposure? Cut canned foods from your diet, report says LA Times. Retrieved from http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/greenspace/2011/03/bpa-canned-food.html
Gibb, G. (2010, July 31). It’s Getting Better, but Dangerous BPA in Cash Receipts a Continuing Concern. Lawyers And Settlements. Retrieved from http://www.lawyersandsettlements.com/articles/bpa-breast-cancer/bpa-bisphenol-cancer-2-14674.html
World Health Organization. (2009, November 27). BISPHENOL A (BPA) – Current state of knowledge and future actions by WHO and FAO. Retrieved from http://www.who.int/foodsafety/publications/fs_management/No_05_Bisphenol_A_Nov09_en.pdf

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