Various advocacy groups have recently implored the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to ban the use of 0rtho-phthalates in food packaging. Ironically, the FDA has refused to grant the petition despite all the evidence highlighting the harmful effects of the chemicals.
Read on to find out more.
Ortho-phthalates are harmful chemicals commonly used in solvents, plastics, and personal care products. The bond in the chemical structure of the phthalates is extremely loose. Thus, it can break down if heated, agitated, or if it comes into contact with other products like our food for a long time. Hence, it’s easy for these chemicals to leak into our food, especially if it’s in a plastic container. In fact, phthalates can even be inhaled if their remnants linger in the air. On top of the heat, phthalates are even more problematic when the food contains alcohol or fat.
Negative Impacts of Phthalates on the Human Body
- Congenital disabilities
- Interference with male sex hormones, thus low semen quality
- Fertility problems
- Child development issues
- Introduction of diseases to the reproductive organs, including the breasts, the ovaries, genitalia, and prostate
- Childhood asthma
Here’s How to Protect Yourself Against Phthalates
- Cook fresh meals at home instead of eating out or ordering takeaways
- Avoid processed foods that come in plastic packaging
- Avoid bottled water and opt for treated tap water instead
- Store your food in glass, silicon, or foil instead of a plastic container
- Avoid microwaving your food, especially with plastic containers. Use other heating alternatives, such as a stove or a cooker