What is BPA? (And how can it affect my unborn child?)

By Dr. Denise Ingrando, Family Chiropractor

If you’ve shopped lately for baby products like bottles or plastic toys, you’ve probably seen the label “BPA free.” While the advertisement itself is likely enough to pique your interest and perhaps keep you from buying products containing BPA, what exactly is BPA, and why is it important to avoid?

BPA (bisphenol A) is a petrochemical and contaminant found in plastic products such as water bottles, plastic containers and plastic wrap, as well as the lining of canned goods. It has been linked to a long list of serious chronic disorders including cancer, cognitive and behavioral impairments, endocrine system disruption, reproductive and cardiovascular system abnormalities, diabetes, altered immune function, asthma and obesity. It has been found to contribute to disease by mimicking the body’s hormones and causing disruption (3,5,7).

The disturbing part is, this toxic substance can affect your children even before they have the chance to drink from a bottle! According to recent research conducted by the Environmental Working Group, this substance, along with 231 other toxic chemicals, was found in nine out of ten random samples of cord blood taken from American infants (5, 6,7). This means that fetuses are not protected from the toxins their mothers are exposed to. “This can lead to chromosomal errors in the developing fetus, which can cause spontaneous miscarriages and genetic damage. And being exposed to just 0.23 parts per billion of BPA is enough to disrupt the effect of estrogen in a baby’s developing brain” (7). In fact, not only do infants and children have underdeveloped organ systems for detoxifying and excreting chemicals, they also have immature and porous blood-brain barriers, which increases the risk for brain exposure and neuro-developmental disorders (7). Women of childbearing age and those who are pregnant should consider the sources of BPA and diligently avoid them. Although the FDA declared BPA safe in 2008, they now have “some concern about the potential effects of BPA on the brain, behavior and prostate gland of fetuses, infants and children” and are becoming more aggressive in “re-evaluating the way they regulate BPA” (1,2,3).

Tips to help you steer clear of BPA include:

  • Drink from glass bottles
  • Buy fresh or frozen rather then canned food products
  • Drink plenty of water to flush toxins from your system
  • Receive regular chiropractic care

Regular chiropractic care is an important aspect in helping your body handle the wide variety of chemicals it is exposed to, as it can keep your system functioning optimally in spite of a potentially toxic load. As the nervous system is responsible for regulating endocrine (hormonal) function, as well as the function of every system in your body, chiropractic adjustments that remove nerve interference can help the body to function at 100%. Consider chiropractic care for yourself and your family today, especially if you are pregnant.

[1]Understanding FDA food packaging regulations,” White-paper by Rohm and Haas,

[2] Kissinger M. “FDA says it’s unable to regulate BPA” (January 17, 2010) Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

[3]Update on bisphenol A for use in food contact applications: January 2010” U.S. Food and Drug Administration

[4] http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2010/02/04/fda-shifts-position-now-has-concerns-about-bpa-risks-.aspx

[5]www.mothering.com/toxic-chemicals-found-in-babies (12/09/09)


[7] Dr. Mercola -“232 Toxic Chemicals Found In Babies” (12/31/09) http://articles.mercola.com/sites/current.aspx