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The Plastic Chemicals Hiding in Your Food

Consumer Reports “tested popular fast foods and supermarket staples for bisphenols and phthalates, which can be harmful to your health. Here’s what we found—and how to stay safer. By the time you open a container of yogurt, the food has taken a long journey to reach your spoon. You may have some idea of that journey: From cow to processing to packaging to store shelves. But at each step, there is a chance for a little something extra to sneak in, a stowaway of sorts that shouldn’t be there. That unexpected ingredient is something called a plasticizer: a chemical used to make plastic more flexible and durable. Today, plasticizers—the most common of which are called phthalates—show up inside almost all of us, right along with other chemicals found in plastic, including bisphenols such as BPA. These have been linked to a long list of health concerns, even at very low levels. Consumer Reports has investigated bisphenols and phthalates in food and food packaging a few times over the past 25 years. In our new tests, we checked a wider variety of foods to see how much of the chemicals Americans actually consume. The answer? Quite a lot. Our tests of nearly 100 foods found that despite growing evidence of potential health threats, bisphenols and phthalates remain widespread in our food.” [h/t Pete Weiss]

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