Eat in. Studies have shown that people who eat more meals prepared outside the home have higher levels of BPA. To reduce your exposure, consider cooking more meals at home with fresh ingredients. When you do eat out, choose restaurants that use fresh ingredients.
Store it safely. Food and drinks stored in plastic can collect chemicals from the containers, especially if the foods are fatty or acidic. Next time, try storing your leftovers in glass or stainless steel instead of plastic.
Don't microwave in plastic. Warmer temperatures increase the rate of chemicals leaching into food or drinks. So use heat-resistant glass or ceramic containers when you microwave, or heat your food on the stove. The label "microwave safe" means safety for the container, not your health.
Brew the old-fashioned way. Automatic coffee makers may have BPA and phthalates in their plastic containers and tubing. When you brew your coffee, consider using a French press to get your buzz without the BPA.
Take action. While we can each take steps to reduce our own exposure, it's important to join with other to call for healthier food packaging for everyone. Breast Cancer Fund and Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families are leading national efforts to get chemicals of concern out of food packaging and other products.
Question: Did you find heightened risks remain for infants and toddlers with BPA within formula (or formula cans), toys, juices, etc.?
Dr. RuthAnn Rudel answers: While no babies were on this study, I would say that based on levels reported on formula and juices, that is a significant source of exposure to BPA for formula fed infants.
Question: "What specifically should parents be looking for in regards to more hidden sources of BPA exposure for their children?"
Dr. RuthAnn Rudel answers: "Canned food and plastic food packaging are the major sources. DEHP is in some kids' toys but considerably less than several years ago. In our study, we changed the food without changing toys and say an obvious decrease in levels."
Question: "When we are eating out, what would be a good choice?"
Dr. RuthAnn Rudel answers: "Try to identify restaurants that are following basic guidelines that our test families followed in the intervention -- fresh foods, no cans, limited plastics for storage."
Question: "What is a safe way for families to store leftovers?"
Dr. RuthAnn Rudel answers: "I use porcelan bowls and cover with a glass or ceramic plate. Another option is glass containers with plastic lids or loosely placed in a plastic bag. The food shouldn't touch lids."
Question: "What cooking utensils -- specifically spatulas, ladles, slotted spoons for pastas -- can I use with my teflon cookware to avoid scratches? I discovered that some of these were made with BPA."