BPA – bisphenol-A : what you need to know

Can you guess what mcdonalds, CVS, KFC, whole foods, walmart, safeway, the uspostal service your ATM machine and gas-stations have in common?

They are all are using register receipts that have high levels of a substance called bisphenol-A or BPA.

BPA is linked to along list of serious health issues like cancer and reproductive problems probably because it is a synthetic estrogen. It is used as a plastic hardener and we now know to coat thermal paper used in many register receipts. Legislation is already in place to remove it from canned goods, baby bottles and infant formula.

Now, tests commissioned by Environmental working group found high levels on 40% of register receipts. The total amounts of BPA on receipts tested were 250-1000 times greater than other sources of exposure.

The receipt for a Mcdonalds happy meal from Clinton Connecticut on April 21 had an estimated 13milligrams of bpa – this equals the amount in 126 cans of chef boyardee overstuffed beef ravioli in hearty tomato and meat sauce which to date had the highest of any canned good tested.

Individuals handling these receipts especially at large retailers could handle hundreds of receipts a day.

Food control authorities found that it transfers readily to the skin and penetrates to a level which cannot be washed off and into layers that enter directly into the bloodstream.

So what is the lesson? Wearing gloves to handle recipts until the industry removes the BPA

Now what!