FDA Cautions Use of Children's Products Containing BPA

Filed under: Health & Safety: Babies, In The News, Research Reveals: Babies

Parents may want to take a closer look at the sippy cups and baby bottles they have in the house following a statement by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration expressing concern over the effects of the chemical BPA when it comes to children.

Bisphenol A has been used in hard plastics since the 1960s, and health concerns have been raised about its use in the past several years. Results from recent toxicology studies have raised concern at both the National Toxicology Program at the National Institutes of Health and the FDA, according to a statement.

"(Both) have some concern about the potential effects of BPA on the brain, behavior and prostate gland, in fetuses, infants and young children," according to the FDA.

After health concerns were expressed about the use of BPA, new manufacturers of BPA-free baby bottles and sippy cups began popping up. In 2007, Thermos introduced Foogo brand sippy cups that are stainless steel and completely BPA-free, Betsi Schumacher, spokesperson for Thermos Foogo, tells ParentDish."I think this is something we've been watching and been concerned with for years," Schumacher says. "We have always erred on the side of caution if there's a potential issue with a material (used in making sippy cups)."

The push by manufacturers and retailers alike to rid children's products of BPA has been going on for the past several years. Foogo recently introduced a line of plastic sippy cups that are are BPA-free as well, Schumacher says.

"I think it's difficult to find a product with BPA in it now," she says.

The FDA says further study will need to be done to clarify remaining questions about the risks of BPA. But it also is supporting companies that have stopped using BPA in making baby bottles and infant feeding cups.

Additionally, the FDA is trying to help companies develop BPA alternatives for the linings of infant formula cans and other food cans. But the organization does not recommend families change their use of infant formula or foods, because the nutritional benefit outweighs the potential risk from BPA, the FDA says.

Related: Choosing Baby Bottles and Nipples

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AdviceMama Says:
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.