Do you know how much plastic we eat every day with food?

Do you know how much plastic we eat every day with food?

Water pollution and chemicals released by products we use every day are dangerous for our health.

Every day we put on our tables an amount of plastic that ends up in our stomach. Researchers found out that in the food we eat and in the water we drink daily there are many plastic substances we ingest without even realizing.

Where do they come from, and how dangerous they are? Let’s find out how to reduce the risk of plastic in our food.

Plastic in food, where it is

Researchers from the Heriot-Watt University of Edinburgh, in Scotland, found out that in 20 minutes (the average time of a meal at home) we can eat up to 114 microparticles of plastic.

According to different studies, the main responsibles are fish and water. The cause is pollution. The sea is full of plastic, which often comes from common objects, such as bottles, containers or packagings). With erosion, the microparticles scatter in the sea, where marine organisms eat them.

However, fish is not the only polluted food. A series of studies proved that even sea and rock salt is often contaminated. In this case, the microparticles are made of polyethylene, polypropylene and polyethylene terephthalate (PET). These chemicals are widely used to make packagings.

Photo source: https://pixabay.com/it/coffeetogo-tazze-monouso-3926395/

Plastic in water

What about the water we drink every day? Unfortunately, in this case the outcomes are not better. The State University of New York in Fredonia analyzed 11 different bottled water brands. In the 93% of cases, they were polluted with plastic particles.

Another study analyzed tap water samples in 14 Countries of the world. According to experts, 83% of them contained microparticles of plastic.

Plastic containers: are they dangerous?

We also need to consider the substances plastic containers release and end up in food and drinks. Plates, glasses and containers we commonly use, in specific condition release microparticles.

What to do? Do not reuse disposable products, avoid exposing them to the sunlight and do not leave your hot food and drinks for too long in contact with plastic. These are the most dangerous behaviors.

Plastic in food: dangers

Photo source: https://pixabay.com/it/cucina-cibo-italiano-antipasti-2248567/

We still do not know the side effects of the microplastics we ingest, because the studies are difficult to conduct, due to people heterogeneity and the many type of plastics.

For example, we already know that some substances used to make plastic more flexible (such as bisphenol A) have harmful effects on the human health. What can we do to avoid this problem?

Of course, we cannot avoid plastic in food, but with some precautions we can reduce its quantity. Choose wooden or ceramic containers, especially for hot food, and buy glass bottled water.

When it comes to our diet, it is not that easy. It’s not healthy to stop eating fish, because it is rich in benefits. However, you should eat it 2/3 times a week, due to its increasing heavy metal content. Be careful with shellfish: they contain more polluting substances.

Photo source: https://pixabay.com/it/coffeetogo-tazze-monouso-3926395/, https://pixabay.com/it/cucina-cibo-italiano-antipasti-2248567/

ultimo aggiornamento: 17-03-2019

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