Think, how often while doing grocery shopping you buy canned food in an aluminum can or in a plastic container? Don’t rush with the answer. Think again: canned beans, canned asparagus, canned ham, canned sardines, tuna or pink salmon, tomato pasta and sauce, canned fruits such as pineapple or peaches, mayonnaise, ketchup, oil, and bottled water.

Preserving food by canning is a method in which the foods are processed and sealed in an airtight container. It has been known for ages. Maybe you remember your grandma making delicious preserves at home using containers made out of glass

Dangers of BPA

Canning provides a shelf life from one to five years. Even though appearance, smell and vitamin content are deteriorating with the time, the food is still safe to eat. Is it really so? From microbial growth point of view – yes. But on the other hand …
In fact, almost all canned foods are filled with a substance that you cannot find in the ingredient list. That chemical, called bisphenol-A (BPA), comes from the plastic lining of the can. BPA is a synthetic chemical compound produced in large quantities for polycarbonate plastics that are used in some food and drink packaging including food cans and water bottles. Human exposure to BPA is of exceedingly great size.
Hundreds of scientific publications stated that average BPA levels found in people were above those that cause harm to many animals in laboratory experiments. The BPA content in serum and other body fluids suggests the possibilities that BPA intake is much higher than accounted for or that BPA can bioaccumulate in some conditions (such as pregnancy).

Death in a can of food

Researchers have linked BPA to endocrine disruption in fetuses and children, sexual and reproductive development problems, hormonal effects that increased risk for breast and prostate cancers, infertility, type 2 diabetes, obesity, and asthma.
Canned tomatoes are exceptionally dangerous due to their high acidity, which seems to cause BPA to leech from the lining into the tomatoes themselves much faster. The level of BPA can be so high in fact; you should seriously consider not buying them.

A report “Buyers Beware: Toxic BPA and regrettable substitutes found in the linings of canned food” released at the end of March 2016, outlines the results of a comprehensive study conducted and produced as a collaborative effort by the following organizations: Breast Cancer Fund, Campaign for Healthier Solutions, Clean Production Action, Ecology Center, Mind the Store Campaign. Also, 22 organizations from 19 U.S. states and from the province of Ontario, Canada, participated in this Canned Food Testing study.
It is stated: “Our findings were alarming. We expected that the explosion in consumer demand for BPA-free packaging would have resulted in swifter action by canned food brands and retailers. However, 67% of the cans tested (129 out of 192) contained BPA-based epoxy in the body and/or the lid.”
Some of the affected products came from the well-known brands such as Campbell Soup Company (BPA was found in all cans tested), Del Monte (70% of products contained BPA), Progresso and Green Giant (50% of cans with BPA) and many of the private label cans sold by Kroger, Albertsons, Trader Joe’s, Walmart, and Target.

So, maybe it’s better to keep canned food and bottled water out of your kitchen? (“Chapel Hill bisphenol A expert panel consensus statement: Integration of mechanisms, effects in animals and potential to impact human health at current levels of exposure”)

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