Reminder, don't heat your plastics
The American Academy of Pediatric (AAP) is warning us not to heat plastics whether by microwaving them or running them throughout he dishwasher. The AAP is concerned that heating plastics will increase the amount of dangerous chemicals that leaks from the plastic.
I have to admit that this doesn’t feel like news. We’ve long been too to avoid plastic water bottles left in a hot car, to avoid plastic baby bottles, and, generally, we’ve all become weary of plastic use for both health and environmental reasons.
With that said, this seems important to me for two reasons. First, it hasn’t always been mainstream to have concerns over plastic use and what heating and cooling plastics really does to the plastic and our ability to consuming a myriad of micro plastics and chemicals. Second,use of plastics encouraging the output of dangerous chemicals isn’t really a pediatric issue. It isn’t a water bottle issue. Next time you visit the grocery store try to find many of your favorite items without the plastic container or bag.
According to the report cited in the article, the following plastics should be avoided:
recycling code 3 - phthalates
recycling code 6 - styrene
recycling code 7 - bisphenols
On a recent trip to the grocery store, I was surprised to find that I couldn’t even find a plastic number on packages of organic rice I was choosing between. I didn’t plan to microwave the plastic, but I couldn’t even identify its number. As a consumer, I had no way of knowing which plastic housed my rice. I wondered if it really mattered if it were organic if I was about to consume micro plastics anyway… We have come a long way, but, wow, do we have a lot of work to do.
Some obvious and quick thoughts on how we can minimize plastics when grocery shopping:
Bring produce bags or encourage local stores to use compostable ones.
Look for glass and BPA-free metal. (Obsessed with buying Waterloo seltzer when it’s on sale at Whole Foods. While we have a Soda Stream and glass bottles, the convenience and peace of mind of getting BPA-free, canned, purified-water seltzer is winning out of late.)
Support brands that choose responsible, healthier packaging.
The more we know, the better our choices. Any step is a positive one. The goal is to strive for healthier not to be riddle with fear. Walk on, peeps. ;)
Photo Cred: Sven Scheuermeier via Unsplash