Kicking The Cans: part 1

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No, this blog post is not about a fun and thrifty game to play with the kids. It is about getting rid of BPA laden cans. A post on reducing our can reliance has been on my mind for months now, for various reasons. Months ago I started to end my reliance on canned goods because 1) most foods you buy in them lose nutritional value in the canning process and 2) because even though I recycle them, there is still lots of wasted resources involved. I was finally given the big push to get it written after seeing article after article posted by my friends on Facebook (by the way, have you liked Green & Thrifty yet?) on the dangers of BPA. Not that the dangers of BPA were anything new to me. Before I get more into this, let me briefly explain what BPA is.

"Bisphenol A (BPA) is a an industrial chemical used to make polycarbonate plastic resins, epoxy resins, and other products." It can be found in numerous products around us such as CDs, DVDs, receipts, canned food and drink linings, cars, and food storage containers. It has been thoroughly tested since the 1960's and recognized as safe for use, with the EPA's safe level being much higher than human exposure.

That all sounds well and good except that for years many researchers have shown that BPA does have potential risks as the chemical can leach out from the lining of containers and other products. This is of particular concern when food is involved.  BPA mimics estrogen in our bodies and has been linked to numerous health issues such as cancer, diabetes, obesity, low sperm count, and neurobehavioral issues.

And just this year the FDA and other agencies have even expressed concern about the potential health risks:

But the National Toxicology Program at the Department of Health and Human Services says it has "some concern" about the possible health effects of BPA on the brain, behavior and prostate gland of fetuses, infants and children. This level of concern is midway on its five-level scale, which ranges from serious to negligible. The Food and Drug Administration now shares this level of concern and is taking steps to reduce human exposure to BPA in the food supply by finding alternatives to BPA in food containers. 3  
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 The problem is that BPA is all around us. According to the Centers for Disease Control it is in "almost 95% of us." But while we can't avoid BPA completely there are steps we can do to reduce our exposure including eating out less and switching to stainless steel or glass food and drink containers. For more ways see How to reduce BPA Levels by 60% in 3 Days and Ways to Reduce Your Exposure to BPA.

Many people wonder what the point to trying to avoid BPA is if there is no way to avoid it all together. Well there is no way to avoid death, but I'm pretty sure most of us do not spend our days jumping in front of moving buses. Okay, that comparison may be a little extreme, but just because I cannot do everything doesn't mean I shouldn't do anything. It is true that there are thousands of toxins all around us that we are exposed to that we can't do anything about. And it is for that very reason that I try to reduce the toxins and other "bad stuff" that we are exposed to that I do have control over. Whether that be the food we eat or the toys the kid plays with. be continued with how I am reducing my home's reliance on canned goods


1) Bisphenol A: Bisphenol A Frequently Asked Questions 

2) BPA and Canned Tomatoes

3) What is BPA, and what are the concerns about BPA?

4) Safer Chemical Healthy Families: How to Reduce BPA Levels By 60% in 3 Days


  1. I'm in anxious antipication on what steps you've taken. I've recently vowed not to purchase more canned goods and I'm currently using up the few that we have. Tomato products are my stumbling block. I'm looking forward to your next post.

  2. Darn it! I guess I have to make my next post good :) Tomato products are definitely my stumbling block too...but I am going to try to write about some alternatives that are not *too* pricy or hard to deal with.



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