Friday, March 30, 2012

NTM News Brief: FDA Denies Ban on BPA


In a disappointing judgement today, the FDA denied the National Resources Defense Council's petition  to prohibit the use of bisphenol A, commonly known as BPA, in products manufactured in the United States.

The NRDC had included numerous studies revealing BPA-associated health risks with its petition, but the FDA said that in many cases the sample sizes used in those studies were too small to be conclusive, and in others, the results were strictly from animal studies, the results of which it said could not be applied to humans.
The National Resource Defense Council claimed, " The FDA is out of step with scientific and medical research. This illustrates the need for a major overhaul of how the government protects us against dangerous chemicals."

The Natural Resources Defense Council says the FDA's approval of BPA for use in packaging food "results in human exposure" to the chemical and is "dangerous to those who use the products."

The truth is that there are numerous studies that have linked low level but constant exposure to BPA to a number of dangerous side effects, including defects in newborns, harm to the central nervous system, increased rates of prostate and breast cancer, and metabolic changes in the body that lead to obesity and insulin resistance, which are the main causes of diabetes (to read more about the potential dangers of BPA read our post on "The ABC's of BPA"

The FDA noted that their agency recognizes that there is evidence from some studies, " however the Food and Drug Administration’s assessment is that the scientific evidence at this time does not suggest that the very low levels of human exposure to BPA through the diet are unsafe."

The agency also stressed that it "has been studying and continues to study the effects of BPA and will make any necessary changes to BPA's status based on the science."

Most curious?   The FDA official  position is that there  is "some concern" about the effects of BPA  impact on the brain and reproductive system of infants, babies and young children, and is working to remove the chemical from baby bottles and sippy cups nationwide. The government is also spending  $30 million to continue to study the chemical’s effect on humans.

The reality is that our government agency's act in a reactive matter.  When numerous solid studies prove undisputed that BPA is harmful (especially for children and pregnant mothers), that is when they will take action... even if this takes years of studies (and exposure to our children and family) to prove.



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