Even if we avoid bottled water, we come into contact with Bisphenol A (BPA) every day because it is almost everywhere: Chemical firms produce about six billion pounds of BPA every year to make things like medical devices, plastic tableware and food storage containers. It also coats products like food cans, ATM and retail receipts, dental sealants, bottle tops and water pipes.
Now, more evidence connecting BPA to the development of asthma appears in the new Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology. The strength of the BPA/asthma association is moderate in this research, but other similar studies suggest a stronger link.
How BPA can increase the risk of asthma is not clear, but the consistency of the effect suggests that it’s a matter of time before researchers identify this mechanism. The new study also highlights pre-existing concerns about the health effects of childhood and prenatal BPA’s exposure.
The US Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Prevention detected BPA in 93 percent of a test population of more than 2,500. Furthermore, the CDC classifies it as an “endocrine-disrupting compound” because it acts like estrogen (the female hormone) in the body. Other studies link BPA to early onset-of puberty, obesity, neurological and developmental problems, cardiovascular disease and diabetes. Furthermore, results from tests on laboratory animals raise questions about BPA’s contribution to breast cancer.