Recent news posts have called attention to the dangerous chemical BPA (Bisphenol A) found in common plastics such as water bottles. New research is furthering the discovery of just how this commonly used plastic chemical can effect the development and long term health of unborn children, via their mothers. “Exposure to BPA may be harmful during pregnancy; this exposure may permanently affect the fetus,” explained Hugh S. Taylor, Ph.D., co-author of the study from Yale University School of Medicine. “We need to better identify the effects of environmental contaminants on not just crude measures such as birth defects, but also their effect in causing more subtle developmental errors.” Exstensive testing is revealing that the exposure to BPA as a fetus continual effects the person in to adult hood. BPA exposure can lead to advanced puberty, fertility problems, altered mammary development, a variety of hormone-related cancers and altered reproductive function. BPA is commonly found in baby bottles and other plastics that mothers and children come in contact with on a daily basis. Gerald Weissmann, M.D., cautioned, “remember how diethylstilbestrol (DES) caused birth defects and cancers in young women whose mothers were given such hormones during pregnancy. We’d better watch out for BPA, which seems to carry similar epigenetic risks across the generations. The BPA baby bottle scare may be only the tip of the iceberg.”
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