(NaturalHealth365) A new study has added to the mounting pile of evidence that phthalates in plastic food packaging can cause chronic disease. Researchers from the South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute and the University of Adelaide have further substantiated these findings.
In this recent study, about 1,500 male participants were assessed for phthalates in their systems. Urine samples revealed that a staggering 99.6 percent of the subjects had phthalates in their bodies at significant levels.
Phthalates in plastic food packaging linked with type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and high blood pressure
Even just traces of phthalates can cause a number of different health problems. The researchers suspect these phthalates come from exposure to plastic food packaging, which is used in a high percentage of the processed food items on store shelves today.
Some of the top forms of illness and chronic disease linked with phthalates in plastic food packaging include type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and high blood pressure. The presence of phthalates is strongly linked with eating foods that have been packaged and stored in plastic bottles and containers.
Sadly, the typical Western diet is still heavy based on processed foods that are stored in plastic food packaging. Previous studies have already shown a link between prepackaged foods, high phthalate levels and chronic disease.
Phthalates impede vitamin D synthesis, which can pave the way for chronic disease
In addition to processed and packaged foods on store shelves, phthalates have also been found in fast foods. They are used in the processing and sale of personal care products such as cosmetics, lotions and medical tubes. Phthalates have been linked with hormone disruption as well as blockage of vitamin D synthesis, which is crucial to immune system health.
A 2016 study assessing U.S. National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey data and published in The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism found that persons exposed to phthalates in large amounts tended to have lower levels of vitamin D in their bloodstreams than those with less exposure. Phthalates, EDCs and BPAs seem to alter vitamin D in negative ways.
So what are the alternatives? Packaging design experts from Skipping Rocks Lab out of London in the UK has created what they call “edible water balls,” or consumable plastic packaging that eliminates the need for storing and packaging drinking water in plastic bottles. A team of German experts has created biodegradable, leaf-derived plates and cutlery as a substitute for plastic versions. But, these ideas ignore a simple truth …
Avoid food stored in plastic food packaging whenever possible
Consumers can push for the design and use of non-plastic, biodegradable packaging alternatives with their favorite food manufacturers. But, even better, we ought to focus on non-processed food choices – as much as possible.
In other words, we simply have to change our buying habits. This includes buying local and organic vegetables, fruits and 100% grass-fed meats, plus more cooking at home to avoid ‘packaged foods’ altogether. Of course, if we need to carry our food with us, we can invest in a stainless steel or glass container – when needed,
When storing or carrying water for any length of time, use a glass jar or bottle – instead of plastic. These are just a few simple suggestions to help you live a ‘plastic-free’ life. To your health!
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