What is BPS? How does BPS affect my baby?
If something is labelled as BPA free, you think the product is safe right? But now there’s something called BPS. Are plastics safe for your baby?
So what is BPS?
Bisphenol S (BPS) is now used as a replacement for Bisphenol A (BPA), which is a common ingredient in polycarbonate plastics. Polycarbonate plastics are the main plastics that make-up food storage containers, water bottles, plastic plates and even the lining of tin cans. But BPA was found to be seeping into the food held in these containers, which may then be absorbed into the body. Studies have found that once in the body, BPA interacts or plays tricks on the body’s hormones and imitates their actions. This interaction with your hormones can cause certain cancers, heart problems, behaviour problems, type 2 diabetes, autism, asthma and obesity. After a public outcry, BPA was banned in baby products such as baby bottles and sippy cups and replaced with BPS. Unfortunately, recent research has found that BPS may be just as bad.
How does BPS affect my baby?
Even though BPS was developed as a safe alternative to BPA, new studies show that BPS can cause similar disruptions to your baby’s hormones. A National Geographic article published in September 2018 even goes as far as questioning ‘BPA free’ labelling and directly mentions the similarities with BPS. While there is still controversy about how much damage the hormone disruption causes, it is generally agreed the younger or smaller the child or baby, the more at risk they are. Absorption rates in small babies and children are much faster than in adults, and this includes unborn babies.
So how can I avoid BPS?
BPA has been banned in baby products since 2012, but the same cannot yet be said for BPS. To stay on the safe side, here are a few tips to avoid BPS:
- The first may be obvious, but look for BPS free products – Cherub Baby is the first Australian baby product brand which is 100% BPS free – our reusable food pouches are BPS, Phthalate and PVC Free;
- Do not heat food in a microwave using a plastic container. Heat can cause an increase in chemical leaks;
- Do not put plastic containers in a dishwasher. The temperature can cause the plastic to melt which again can increase chemical leaks;
- Avoid tinned food, the lining inevitably contains BPA or BPS – use fresh or frozen instead;
- Avoid damaged and old plastic containers;
- Try and use plastic alternatives like glass and stainless steel which are easy to clean or sterilize.