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Plastic Water Bottles

Plastic water bottles are very convenient for carting water around when we are on the go, as they don't break if we drop them. It is worth paying attention to the type of plastic your water bottle is made of, to ensure that the chemicals in the plastic do not leach into the water.  If you taste plastic, you are drinking it, so get yourself another bottle.

To be certain that you are choosing a bottle that does not leach, check the recycling symbol on your bottle.  If it is a #2 HDPE (high density polyethylene), or a #4 LDPE (low density polyethylene), or a #5 PP (polypropylene), your bottle is fine.  The type of plastic bottle in which water is usually sold is usually a #1, and is only recommended for one time use.  Do not refill it.  Better to use a reusable water bottle, and fill it with your own filtered water from home, and keep these single-use bottles out of the landfill. 

Unfortunately, those fabulous colourful hard plastic lexan bottles made with polycarbonate plastics and identified by the #7 recycling symbol, may leach BPA. (Bisphenol A,  is a xenoestrogen, a known endocrine disruptor, meaning it disturbs the hormonal messaging in our bodies).  Synthetic chemical endocrine disruptors are particularly devastating to babies and young children.  For more of the science on the effects of BPA on our endocrine system etc. see these studies:  Environmental Health Perspectives Journal. Nalgene, the company that manufactures the lexan bottles also makes #2 HDPE bottles in the same sizes and shapes, so we do have a viable alternative. Order one at Nalgene.   Check the recycling numbers on all your plastic food containers as well, and gradually move to storing all food in glass or ceramic.

Keep plastic water bottles out of direct sunlight, or better yet, store water in glass or brass.

Chek, Paul; How to Eat, Move and Be Healthy!  Chek Institute, San Diego, CA, 2004.
Doheny, Brenda; Nalgene Plastics May be Harmful online at Oregan State Daily Barometer
Hunt,Patricia;"Bisphenol A Exposure Causes Meiotic Aneuploidy in the Female Mouse" Current Biology, Vol 14, 546-553, 1 April 2003.
vom Saal, Frederick and Hughes, Claude; "An Extensive New Literature Concerning Low-Dose Effects of Bisphenol A Shows the Need for a New Risk Assessment" Environmental Health Perspectives, Vol. 113, No. 8, August 2005.