Baby Bottle Concerns

Baby Bottles

A chemical used to make baby bottles and other shatterproof plastic containers could be linked to a range of hormonal problems, a preliminary government report has found.

The report was greeted by some environmental groups as confirmation of their concerns, while chemical makers latched on to the report’s preliminary nature and its authors’ warning against drawing overly worrisome conclusions.

The federal National Toxicology Program said Tuesday that experiments on rats found precancerous tumors, urinary tract problems and early puberty when the animals were fed or injected with low doses of the plastics chemical bisphenol A.

While such animal studies only provide “limited evidence” of bisphenol’s developmental risks, the group’s draft report stresses the possible effects on humans “cannot be dismissed.” The group is made up of scientists from the Centers for Disease Control, the Food and Drug Administration and the Institutes of Health.

More than 90 percent of Americans are exposed to trace amounts of bisphenol, according to the CDC. The chemical leaches out of water bottles, the lining of cans and other items made with it.

The American Chemistry Council, which represents manufacturers, said the report “affirms that there are no serious or high level concerns for adverse effects of bisphenol on human reproduction and development.” Among the manufacturers of bisphenol are Dow Chemical Co. and BASF Group.

The group said it supports additional research to determine whether adverse effects seen in animals “are of any significance to human health.”

Environmentalists, meanwhile, hailed the report as the first step toward reassessing a chemical they believe could contribute to cancer and other health problems.

“We’re hoping this decision will force FDA to recognize the toxicity of this chemical and make manufacturers set a safety standard that’s protective of the most vulnerable populations,” said Dr. Anila Jacob of the Environmental Working Group.

The toxicology group’s findings echo those of researchers assembled by the National Institutes of Health, who last August called for more research on bisphenol in humans.

The FDA in November said there is “no reason at this time to ban or otherwise restrict its use.” The agency on Tuesday did not immediately have any comment about the new report.

But growing concern about the chemical has pushed many consumers toward glass alternatives, and triggered investigations by state and federal lawmakers.

Rep. John Dingell, D-Mich., called on FDA Tuesday to reconsider the safety of bisphenol, saying the toxicology report’s findings “fly in the face of the FDA’s determination.”

Dingell, who chairs the House Energy and Commerce Committee, issued letters to seven companies that make baby formulations earlier this year, questioning whether they use bisphenol in the lining of their cans and bottles.

The companies included Hain Celestial Group, Nestle USA and Abbott Laboratories.

A spokeswoman for the International Formula Council, which represents baby food makers, said Tuesday “the overwhelming scientific evidence supports the safety” of bisphenol, adding that no foreign governments have restricted or banned its use.

The National Toxicology Program will take public comments on its initial report through May. A final version will be issued this summer.

Earlier this month state lawmakers in New Jersey passed a bill that would ban the sale of all products containing bisphenol.

Canada’s health agency is also examining the health risks of bisphenol is expected to issue its findings in coming days.

NOTE: I hope that no one is alarmed by this…I find it rather depressing as I have always given my children regular plastic sippies and bottles. I couldn’t bring myself to post this without providing any USEFUL information…you can purchase Bisphenol-A free plastic bottles and cups here. At least there is something that we can do to feel some control over this.

Comments

  1. says

    Breast is best, however, if you need to use a bottle there are now bpa-free bottles out there. It’s a sad world that we have to buy these “bpa-free” bottles since they should be bpa-free in the FIRST place!

  2. CAMomOfTwo says

    I was looking for info on BPA and stumbled on a cat fight on formula vs. breastfed. I think it’s safe to say that you certainly can’t measure a mother’s love by how she feeds her baby. Regardless, is there a good BPA free bottle that isn’t glass?

  3. formulaproudmom says

    #1- f*ck off you stupid c*nt! What about the women out there who have adopted or have had a double masectomy because of breast cancer and are unable to? How dare you! I don’t breast feed and it’s because of stupid people like you who make breastfeeding into some sort of obsessive cult. I hope you rot in h*ll- you deserve it b*tch.

  4. Analise says

    #1 and #2 posters are further proof some people shouldn’t breed. What about adopted kids? What if a Mother simply can’t supply enough milk? It DOES happen. They should all let their babies die instead of feeding them. Morons.

  5. DMITZ says

    I breastfed until my daughter was 2 months and I regret not doing it longer. It is a lot of work (IMO) but well worth it. I hope to stick with it longer when I have another baby.

  6. DMITZ says

    #1 that was an ignorant comment.

    To all the mothers out there bottle feeding, STOP!! Stop giving your child food (nutrition) to live because #1 on here will think you don’t love your child!!

    I know there are concerns to the recycled products but if you can’t have a mature and informative conversation, keep your mouth shut.

  7. may says

    Zbella,
    Wow! Your youngest is 20 months and still nursing… Is it productive or more for comfort for her? I had a hard time nursing and wish I could have done it longer.
    Just curious: Will your daughter take from a straw?

  8. Zbella says

    may – it did get complicated at times! I tried pumping, but my two oldest refused the bottle. So I could only be gone between feedings – 3 hours tops those early days.

    I’ve been sick – but it’s actually good for the baby to nurse because he/she will get the immunities through me. So I nursed right through my illnesses. I even had shingles, which was soooooo painful, and that was with an 8 week old baby.

    When I had my third, I simply took her everywhere with me. Now my daughter is 20 months and still nurses several times a day, but starting around 10 months I no longer had to take her everywhere! She was my sidekick.

    Now my sister has a baby and bottle feeds and my daughter likes to grab the bottle from her cousin. I never even tried the bottle with her because I figured it wouldn’t work but here she apparently didn’t have a problem drinking out of one!

    But it has been almost 7 years since I’ve been on my own (before I had children) for a long weekend or vacation. For some women that would be maddening, but over time I’ve adjusted and don’t mind. I love being around my babies, although I have to admit I wouldn’t mind a weekend off sometime soon!

  9. may says

    Zbella, then what did you do when you were sick or had to go somewhere (where you couldn’t take your kids with you)? It’s great it worked for you but wondering about the logistics.

  10. Zbella says

    You can’t win for loosing. I don’t worry about this particular issue since my 3 kids refused bottles, and would only drink straight from my breast. But I’m sure there are a million and one other things that I will have to worry about in years to come. It’s endless…

  11. Rijay says

    The Sigg aluminum cups look snazzy but there’s that link between aluminum and Alzheimers. And Sigg applies an interior coating, claiming it doesn’t leach but I’d rather not take my chances!

  12. Amber says

    Yes, sippy cups have this too, which is a big concern. I really love the Sigg aluminum cups

    I don’t want to get into some debate about breast and formula but you can work and breastfeed for the record. I am doing it right now. My husband gives my baby my milk in a bottle while I am at work. So, even breastfeeding mothers need to worry about this issue.

  13. telemetry says

    What if you breastfed but had to switch to bottles at 6 months because you had to go back to work to keep a roof over your babies’ heads?

  14. Could it be says

    Breastfed or not, many children use sippy cups which contain this chemical. If you look at the bottom of any plastic container, you’ll see the recycle number. Stay away from anything marked 3,6, and 7 as they are the most likely to leach toxins. (Colored water bottles like Nalgene are usually a 7.)

    The attitude of the FDA is “prove that it is really harmful.” This is different than other countries like those in Europe who adopt a “better safe than sorry” attitude. As a result, we parents in the US need to be extra vigilant about protecting ourselves and our children.

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