Side note: I started writing this post and then realized it would work as a Kitchen Tip, so went to Tammy's Recipes to see if she had here meme up yet. It has been a while since I have been there, and was looking through her posts, and realized that last week she mentioned moving more to glass jars instead of plastic, so I guess this would have been more timely last week, but I wasn't thinking about it then, and I was gone most of the week.
So, now will have to do . . .
What's in my food? One important step in living a more healthy lifestyle involved (involves) removing toxins from our kitchen, house, and habits. I have worked to reduce my use of known toxins and replace them with more natural, safe alternatives. We use more glass jars to store left overs, glass and stoneware for baking, and avoid non-stick surfaces.
I have started investigating more about the plastics that we do still use, and I realized I have a lot of work to do yet. My cousin's wife posted a while back about getting a new Nalgene bottle to have one made of safer plastic (BPA free), and it got me to thinking.
What's on my shelves? With a little looking around, I found some great information and summaries on the studies and findings on various plastics that I use to store my food. I came across this blog posting that talks about the different plastics and gives some links to common products and their associated risks. I didn't realize that plastic wrap is on the dangerous list. I don't use it often, but will try to use it even less now, although Saran brand carries less of a risk.
What's in my grocery bag? Another site gives a great breakdown of each number category, what dangers you might find in that type of plastic, and what products often make use of that type of plastic. I sometimes fall into thinking frugal, and not healthful. When I get cheese from the deli I'm glad I don't have to repackage into a container at home. I hadn't thought about the chemicals present in that little baggie before. After reading more about the dangers of plastic, I want to start moving more of my food into safe containers (glass jars, #1 or #2 plastics) when I get home from the store rather than leaving them in the #3 wraps they may come in.
All this news on the toxins, both known and suspected, in the many plastics in use today makes me wonder about the growing health issues in society. I wonder how much plastic has played a role in these cases. I know far health concerns arise from the obesity issues that face our nation, but I would not be surprised if some link was found between the rampant plastic use in our disposable nation and various childhood conditions. One article said that, "In 95 percent of people tested, bisphenol A [BPA - found in various plastics] is detected at levels that could be harmful, the scientists said."
Makes you stop and think before you refill that water bottle while trying to do something good for the environment. Instead of paper or plastic, we need to be more concerned about "plastic or glass?"
Make mine glass, please.
For more great kitchen tips, check out Tammy's blog.