post off: are you freaked out by bad plastics?

Have you been reading the news stories about bad plastics? This story in The New York Times raised red flags in our house a few weeks ago. It reports that Canada is banning baby bottles made with polycarbonate or BPA, which looks like glass but is lightweight and shatter resistant. You’ll find it things like Nalgene bottles and lots of baby bottles. Reseplace has found that animals exposed demonstrated “behavioral and neural symptoms” later in life, and it’s believed that children are most at risk. Suddenly I’m looking at everything plastic in our life and wondering if it’s okay — from those cute tumblers we just bought at Target to the plastic water cooler we set up our country place. Luckily, I have a chic aluminum Sigg water bottle. And I’ve already ordered some pacifiers and bottles from this site, BPA Free Kids, and can’t wait till they arrive. I’m feeling pangs of guilt each time I put that Soothie in Isadora’s mouth. I wonder what else contains the toxin — does melamine? I don’t know… What about you? Are you freaked out by this, too? — Angela M.

From our partners

You probably don’t realize that your aluminum water bottle is lined with plastic. You are much better off with stainless steel everything! It requires no liner. Try http://www.kleenkanteen.com instead of PBA-free plastic.

We’ve been hearing enough about this that we retired all of our Nalgenes and went to the REI sale and got Camelbak’s BPA-free equivalent. I just don’t know what to do with my Nalgenes now, I assume they can’t go in the recycling and I don’t want to donate them if they’re evil…

Sara

Check out Z Recommends.

http://zrecs.blogspot.com/2008/02/z-report-on-bpa-in-infant-care-products.html

They’ve been following, reporting, and reviewing the BPA issue for a long time now. They’ve got a complete report on almost every kids’ product.

As for what to do with those old nalgenes…one blog I read (sorry, forgot which), turned them into garage-workshop type storage for nails, screws, etc. They would work for anything that won’t get put in anyone’s mouth, I guess (maybe office supplies like rubber bands, paper clips, pencils?).

a handy guide to go by is to look on the bottom at the recycle symbol(the triangle with a number inside). if it’s a 2,4, or 5, it’s one of the healthy plastics. they do not leech into your food. if it’s a 3, 6, or 7, avoid it. it leeches viny chloride, styrene, and bisphenol A, respectively.

we cycle alot so i went thru all our cabinets checking all the sports bottles and stuff. ironically, the only one i came up with that was unsafe was one that came from the company Pur. hehe

brooklynlorax

Are any plastics “good” for food? Take a whiff of plastic wrap? Smells like an oil refinery. Seems to me anything you can smell is leaching something into your food, especially when heated. And, if you’re worried about BPA, there are many reports that cans for food contain BPA in the liners.

BabyCenter: MOMformation » Blog Archive » BPA-free in the BabyCenter store!

[…] or are just concerned about chemicals in their kids. Angela over at Shelteriffic says she’s been ordering pacifiers and bottles to replace her kids old ones. So have I — we’re loving the Safe Sippy over at our house […]

DJ

So many hazardous chemicals and substances in our packaging, food, water, air, home furnishings, paints, etc.

I’m about all worried out by now.

Sara

Found the link for the ideas about what to do with your nalgenes:
http://babytoolkit.blogspot.com/2008/05/hard-as-nails-reuse-bpa-plastic-bottles.html

it’s true that there are no healthy plastics, but it seems that it will be a long time until we can avoid them completely. it seems the only thing to do is to avoid the ones we know that are the worst as much as possible.

Green Apple

when i found out about the bad plastic I raided my cupboard and checked my plastic kingdom. it turns out i don’t own any “bad plastic”. I am saving money so i can change into glass storage aka pyrex so i can re use and re heat without problem. My problem is the water bottle, I think Sigg is really expensive for me and how it easily dents. I may visit REI one of these days to check out camelbak.

Brooke

we found some inexpensive stainless steel water bottles at walgreens of all places – something like 2 for $20. they also dent but at $5 compared to $22 i’m okay with that… just make sure to wash the tops a lot or they get kind of funky.

Anne, REI will do a return or exchange for your Nalgenes with BPA.

Awareness is key, but you don’t have to make these changes overnight. Take baby steps. Start by swapping out your Tupperware with glass storage containers. Then, try glass baby bottles (I’d even avoid BPA-free plastic; there are chemicals in ALL plastics that can leach under the right conditions).

There are lots of easy alternatives out there. Are plastic storage containers that much more convenient than glass storage? Not really. That was an easy swap in our home. Are non-stick pans so essential – doesn’t a fine film of oil on a cast iron pan do as good a job?

Work on swapping out one item a week. The point is to become more self-reliant – something that’s becoming ever more important these days.

Sarah

I’ve dumped all my plastic food storage items, and now use glass. We got rid of our plastic bottles and now use stainless steel ones only. I found a cute stainless bottle with an old tree design to remind me of our hikes in the woods. Here’s a photo of the bottle:

http://www.brightandbold.com/stbo33oztr.html

The whole bpa thing just scares me and I’d rather be safe than sorry. Paying money for a reusable bottle will save me lots from purchasing disposables and help save the earth and my health in the long run. The investment is WELL worth it!

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jennyjenny

Plastic water bottles contaminate drinking water with estrogenic chemicals. I am in the process of removing these environmental estrogens from my life and home. My favorite is the Klean Kanteen bottle. Beautiful colors – stronger than Sigg bottles and cheaper too. Rei carries these.

I also bought a few of the bottles from Walgreens. Lower quality – but you can’t beat the price – on sale 2 for $10. The lip has a strange seam – you could cut your lip if not careful when drinking. Wish they would fix that.

jennyjenny

Oh yeah – I got rid of all plastic storage containers and bought a set of the pyrex bowls with lids. They are just fantastic. Maybe a bit pricey at first but they last forever. They can go in the oven and look great on the table too. Lucky for me my grocery store had one of those promotions where they offered a different pyrex item with a lid every week and I bought at least one of everything.

If we stop buying plastic then they will stop making it, right?

And remember that the dollar stores sell plastics that are not recycleable so be careful what you buy there.

I’m with Sarah, I’ve gotten rid of most of my plastic storage items and have begun using glass. So far, its working out well. I do like the aluminum water bottles as well. I’ve also been hearing about titanium being used in some of these water bottles. Does anyone else know about this and are they more expensive?

Thanks for sharing this link. I think that plastic bottles get are starting to get a bad reputation, but I think that they still serve a purpose for other liquids and essential oils and they won’t be harmful to people.