Food manufacturers still aren’t getting the message on BPA, the estrogenic chemical linked to an array of health problems. A recent survey of canned foods by the nonprofit Breast Cancer Fund found potentially-harmful levels of bisphenol-A in all six of the canned goods it tested—including Annie’s Organic Cheesy Ravioli and Earth’s Best Organic noodle soup (just because the food’s chemical-free doesn’t mean the packaging is, I guess).
The survey tested for BPA in canned goods produced by several major brands and marketed at kids—though I’m gonna guess this isn’t a problem exclusive to the Disney-Princess-shaped version of things. Here’s what they found:
- 114 ppb BPA- Campbell’s Disney Princess Cool Shapes, Shaped Pasta with Chicken in Chicken Broth, 114 ppb
- 81 ppb BPA – Campbell’s Toy Story Fun Shapes, Shaped Pasta with Chicken in Chicken Broth
- 39 ppb BPA – Earth’s Best Organic Elmo Noodlemania Soup, USDA Organic
- 31 ppb BPA – Annie’s Homegrown Cheesy Ravioli, USDA Organic
- 13 ppb BPA- Campbell’s Spaghettios with Meatballs
- 20 ppb BPA – Chef Boyardee Whole Grain Pasta, Mini ABC’s & 123′s with Meatballs
PPB stands for ‘parts per billion’ of BPA.
“This report shows the that we’re all part of a big experiment to see what BPA will do to our kids and us,” said breast cancer surgeon and clinical research scientist William Goodson, who recently published a study showing BPA causes non-cancerous cells to grow and survive like cancer cells. “We weren’t given any choice about being in this experiment, and it’s time for that to change.”
Exposing children to BPA is of particular concern, because of the havoc it can wreak on their still-developing hormonal systems. But BPA is bad news for adults, too—linked to breast cancer, heart disease, ADHD, diabetes, asthma, obesity, male sexual dysfunction, depression, fertility issues, recurring miscarriage, and harm to developing fetuses. As of 2009 more than 90% of independent scientific reviews found significant problems associated with BPA exposure, according to the folks behind the satirical ‘Toxies’ awards— though every single industry-funded study found ‘no significant risk.’
BPA is metabolized by the body, but accumulative exposure can easily allow toxic levels of the stuff to build up inside you. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 95% of Americans have levels of BPA ranging from .1 to 9 ppb in their bodies—that’s at and above the concentrations know to cause negative effects in laboratory experiments). Here’s more on BPA in canned foods from the Breast Cancer Fund: