BPA and Thanksgiving: Enjoy Your Dinner with No Fear

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Thanksgiving is a time for reflection and thanks – a time to be thankful for the bountiful blessings of life, family and home.  It is especially memorable for the festivities and memorable celebrations where the meal is the special guest and is welcomed by family and friends.

If you’re like my family, Thanksgiving and all other large dinners are meant to be enjoyed and not to be feared.  We’ve never been afraid of food.  However, news of a recent report might cause some to ask questions and keep many from enjoying a traditional Thanksgiving dinner.  A new report by the Breast Cancer Fund is yet another of the many generated to cause unnecessary concern for families who just want to enjoy a safe, nutritious and memorable dinner this Thanksgiving.

This report, similar to others over the past year, alleges that BPA will come as an unwelcome guest bringing along with it long term chronic disease and illness.  Not true.  What is true is that BPA can be detected in many of the canned food products we’ve all come to enjoy at Thanksgiving and also throughout the entire year.  This report confirms that BPA can be detected in many of the canned products served along with the traditional turkey.  The report would lead anyone to believe the levels are so high that the foods are dangerous to eat.

The Science on BPA

You may not be aware, but there is a recent study by the CDC and the FDA that offers definitive evidence that the highest levels of BPA exposure from canned foods did not lead to any detectable amounts in the blood stream.  This is important because it actually debunks the old myth that BPA exposure through the diet is harmful.  This and other research has consistently shown that BPA is not harmful as this report and many articles in the media would lead you to believe.

We should applaud the Breast Cancer Fund for conducting this study – research is an integral part to expand our knowledge base regarding chemical safety and to better understand any possible health effects they may cause.  It also adds to the growing body of research that is used by regulatory and health agencies across the globe to evaluate risk.  This is a small study and given the current larger body of scientific evidence supporting the safe use of BPA as a food packaging compound, I would think this report is yet another attempt to cause undue cause and concern over food and especially when food is such an integral and welcomed guest.

BPA is critical to food safety; it is used to protect food – not to harm food.  It serves as a protective bond and helps to keep out other unwanted guests (microorganisms) that can result in a foodborne illness.  The CDC estimates that over 3,000 individuals die annually from foodborne illness yet not one has been caused by a food packaged with BPA.

Experts agree that it is virtually impossible to come in contact with an unsafe amount of BPA through our day-to-day living activities and that should give you confidence to enjoy your Thanksgiving.  Enjoy your food and be thankful for a safe and abundant food supply.

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