Drink from plastic bottles can raise the body’s levels of a controversial ‘gender-bending’ chemical by more than two thirds, according to tests.
Experts have been concerned about the possible health effects of bisphenol A (BPA) – an everyday chemical used in many plastic food and drink containers and tins as well as clear baby bottles – which is officially classified as toxic in some countries.
A study found that participants who drank for a week from polycarbonate bottles showed a 69 per cent increase in their urine of BPA, which mimics the female sex hormone oestrogen.
Researchers did not say how much liquid was drunk per day.
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Researchers from Harvard School of Public Health studied 77 students, who had first undergone a seven-day ‘washout’ phase in which they drank all cold beverages from stainless steel bottles in order to minimise BPA exposure.
They were then given two polycarbonate bottles and asked to drink all cold beverages from them during the next week.
Previous studies have suggested that high levels of BPA consumption are linked to birth defects, growth problems and an increased risk of heart disease and diabetes.