Potential health effects include:
- BPA: Harm to brain, behavior and prostate in young children; many other effects triggered by hormone disruption
- BPS: Related to Hormone disruption
Commonly found in:
- BPA: food and beverage cans, polycarbonate plastic, children’s toys, thermal receipt paper, garden hoses
- BPS: thermal receipt paper
Bisphenol A (BPA) and bisphenol S (BPS) are chemical cousins that are commonly found in plastics, food and beverage can linings, and other consumer products. BPA is known to mimic estrogen and, in animal studies, researchers have linked developmental exposure to it to reproductive harm, increased cancer susceptibility, and abnormalities in brain development and fat metabolism.
The FDA and the National Institutes of Health state that the primary exposure source for most people is contaminated food and beverages. BPA has been detected in infant formula, canned food, and canned beverages. Over 90 percent of people in the United States carry BPA residues in their bodies. The human body breaks down and excretes BPA within a few days, so these consistent measurements in humans mean that we are taking in BPA as fast as our bodies can get rid of it. BPA also has been measured in breast milk, amniotic fluid, and follicular fluid; providing evidence that the developing fetus and infant also are exposed. Premature infants in neonatal intensive care units undergoing treatments were found to have 10 times higher BPA levels than seen in the general public, presumably as a result of BPA leaching from plastic components of medical care devices.
Bisphenol A (BPA) is found in polycarbonate plastic—usually marked with recycling symbol No. 7 and “PC”. Not all No. 7 plastic contains BPA, so look for products specifically labeled as “BPA-free.” Most canned foods and beverages and metal jar lids have BPA-based linings, unless the company has indicated otherwise, and are thought to be a major source of current BPA exposure.
Bisphenol S (BPS) is found in some thermal paper cash register receipts and appears to have similar health risks as BPA.