AS mentioned in my last post, I went to a baby talk with a friend yesterday afternoon. We learnt something from the sharing with the speakers and other parents. One of the topics that really caught my attention is BPA and milk bottles. I am aware of the existence of BPA in plastics and frequently reminded myself of trying to reduce the usage of plastics in my life.
When little gal was born, as a parent, I would think of the best for her. Good plastic bottles, best milk powders, safer and quality-controlled toys and nutritional food. When she was a newborn, I remember I have to use 4 feeding bottles of 5oz and 1 drinking water bottle for her. At least I have sufficient bottles to use during night feeding instead of finding myself I don’t have enough bottles and need to wash them in middle of the night! *wink* Like what other parents told me, it is best to change your baby milk bottles every 3 – 4 months. So I follow what was told.
And that is applicable to the brushes that used to clean her bottles. Dispose them after 3 – 4 months or when some brittles or sponges loose or taken off. And I used Pureen Liquid Cleansers to clean my bottles and often sterile my bottles and nipples. Why need to take all those precautions?? Because baby’s body is still weak and not immune to any infection. BPA effects brains and prostate glands of fetuses, infants and children and other developmental and reproductive problems.
Back to the talk, here are some interesting points that I would like to share here. WARNING! This may be a long post, but it is worth a reading, I assure you. :)
We are exposed to BPA everyday irregardless how careful we are. A small dosage of BPA (Bisphenol A that is used in hardened plastics) is safe for human body. The current exposure limit is set at 50 micrograms of BPA per day per kilogram of body weight. Recent study concluded that normal adults are exposed to between 0.0235 and 0.2472 micrograms per kilogram per day, so overall we are safe from BPA effects. Overdose of BPA will lead to breast, prostate and reproductive system problems and some cancers.
We can find BPA in almost every plastic products, i.e. canned food, mineral water bottles, plastic bags, tinned foil in the containers (our Milo, baby milk powders) to compact discs. We may not be ablve to avoid all those products, but we sure can minimize the exposure of BPA by reducing the usage. Like for example, instead of plastic bags provided in the supermarkets, you can bring your own shopping bag or recycled bag to pack your groceries. And do recycle mineral water bottle; dispose after use. Use glass bottle to fill your water.
Scientists are aware of the hazardous effects of BPA on fetuses, infants and children, so it is responsibilities of pregnant mothers from the very first pregnancy stage to take precautionary measures when it comes to BPA products. So as a pregnant mother, we must try to avoid too much exposure to BPA as what ever mother consume will directly go to the unborn baby. Not only that. Once the baby is delivered, he will expose to more BPA chemical such as in bottles, sippy cups, hard plastic water bottles and tin foil used in the milk powder containers too.
Some tips that may be useful in substituting the plastic products or reduce the BPA effects in the plastic products:
1. Instead of buying your milk powder in containers, you can buy the refill packages or those packed in boxes. Use glass container to store the milk powder.
2. Use BPA-free bottles or glass bottles. BPA bottles may be durable and hard unlike BPA-free bottles, but the thought of BPA releasing to the bottle with every washing and sterile, it is not worth it to harm your children’s health. I found a good site on BPA-free bottles here, so there are some alternatives to the BPA bottles. Glass bottles are the best, but glass bottles are heavier. And also the thought of bumps on baby’s head if the bottles hit him would not appeal to you. Not to mention if you have a naughty child who loves to throw bottle after every feeding, with glass bottles, you may find yourself with shattered glasses on the floor and may hurt your child and your other family members. Like BPA bottles, you still need to change BPA-free bottles oftenly as we don’t know what other chemical used in producing them.
3. Avoid purchasing plastic containers imprinted with the recycling number '7,' many of which contain BPA. Do not heat food in recycling number ‘7' containers
4. Baby food – avoid purchasing food packed in cans. Buy those packed in glasses. Or better, make your own baby food and store in containers in the fridges.
5. Get brushes with softer brittles and sponges as harsh abrasion during washing will releases BPA to the bottle. Change the brushes regularly. Used those special liquid cleansers to clean the milk bottles, not any other washing detergent.
6. Sterile the feeding bottles once every week for new born baby or less than 1 year old. For more than 1 year old, probably do it once every two weeks where as for older toddlers, once a month.
7. Do not boil your feeding bottles directly in the pot as we could not control the temperature and heat.
8. Avoid processed food in cans. Eat healthy by cooking fresh ingredients, meats, fruits and vegetables.