A member asked:

Should i be worried about bpa? i've been told that there is some possibility that plastic nalgene water bottles leach chemicals into the water. i've found conflicting opinions about the veracity of these claims on the internet. what's the truth? is plasti

2 doctors weighed in across 2 answers
Dr. Geoffrey Rutledge answered

Specializes in Internal Medicine

The johns hopkins medical alert letter states that the quotes from johns hopkins in popular email letters are falsely attributed. According to rolf halden, phd, pe, assistant professor in the department of environmental health sciences and the center for water and health at the johns hopkins bloomberg school of public health, we should be more concerned with the quality of the water we drink than the containers water comes from. However, some water bottles contain phthalates, and these can leach into the water at a rate related to how hot the water gets. There is some current understanding that the chemicals released into water by phthalates can act like the hormone estrogen in the body, causing a variety of impacts. The best thing seems to not heat up foods/drinks in plastic containers unless they were designed for this. It may in future become clear that we should limit our exposure to water from plastic bottles; at this time most people are limiting exposure of babies and young children more than adults.

Answered Oct 3, 2016



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Dr. Cathie Lippman answered

Specializes in

Bpa is an estrogen-like compound. It, and chemicals like it, have been found to alter the normal balance of hormones in animals. Bpa may be contributing in part to the lowering age for menarche (onset of periods) we are seeing in females. Imbalance of hormones can result in increased risk of cancers. Thus avoid plastic and also aluminum containers lined with bpa.

Answered Feb 11, 2013



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