A new report, “BPA in Thanksgiving Canned Food,” released by the Breast Cancer Fund documents the presence of the toxic chemical bisphenol A (BPA) in canned foods used to prepare a typical Thanksgiving meal.
BPA is used to make the epoxy-resin linings of metal food cans that forms a barrier between the metal and the food to prevent bacterial contamination.
Unfortunately, the toxic chemical bisphenol A often leaks from the resin into the food. And lab studies have linked BPA to breast and prostate cancer, infertility, early puberty in girls, type-2 diabetes, obesity and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.
Preschoolers exposed to higher levels of bisphenol A (BPA) in the womb may have more anxiety and depression and have worse self-control than those exposed to lower levels of the chemical before birth.
The report tested Campbell’s Cream of Mushroom Soup, Campbell’s Turkey Gravy, Carnation Evaporated Milk (by Nestle), Del Monte Fresh Cut Sweet Corn (Cream Style), Green Giant Cut Green Beans (by General Mills), Libby’s Pumpkin (by Nestle), and Ocean Spray Jellied Cranberry Sauce.
The report determined single servings of almost half of the products tested had levels of BPA comparable to levels that laboratory studies have linked to adverse health effects.
The tests found no BPA in any of the four cans of Ocean Spray Cranberry Sauce. The company has stated that while it does use BPA in its cans, independent tests also indicate no leaching of BPA into the food.
“Preparing your Thanksgiving dinner with these products can deliver a concerning level of BPA,” said Jeanne Rizzo, president and CEO of the Breast Cancer Fund. “How many more Thanksgivings will families have to worry about this uninvited guest before manufacturers finally decide to take it out of cans?”
William Goodson, M.D., a breast cancer surgeon and senior clinical research scientist at California Pacific Medical Center Research Institute says recent research found that BPA from a meal made with BPA contaminated cans creates a spike of this estrogenic chemical in the blood.
In September, Goodson published a study showing that BPA causes non-cancerous cells to grow and survive like cancer cells. “Natural hormones work by spikes, so this is exactly what you don’t want, especially in young kids, who shouldn’t have any estrogenic spikes at all.”
The Breast Cancer Fund claims a number of companies including some of the can manufacturers featured in their report, such as General Mills and Nestle, have announced that they are working toward alternatives to BPA in canned foods.
But not all of the manufacturers are disclosing the alternatives they are exploring, and The Breast Cancer Fund stresses the importance of transparency from manufacturers about these alternatives so the public can be assured they are safe.
The Breast Cancer Fund supports pending federal legislation authored by Rep. Ed Markey, D-Mass., that would ban BPA from all food and beverage containers including canned foods.
For BPA free alternatives to canned foods for those preparing Thanksgiving dinner, click here for easy recipes for a can-free Thanksgiving meal.