Advocates for fresh food everywhere have gotten a slight boost today, as a new study penned by Stanford and Johns Hopkins researchers has interesting findings regarding canned foods.
Most salient is their finding of a definitive link between eating canned foods and having higher levels of BPA. BPA is a compound that has many uses, including the coating for the inside food cans and jar lids.
Not all canned foods have equal amounts of BPA, however. The study found BPA concentrations highest in canned soup, canned pasta, and canned vegetables and fruit.
Some of the effects of BPA on humans are unclear. However, California listed BPA as a female reproductive toxicant, and studies show that children are especially susceptible to BPA-caused hormone disruption. Because of healthier federal nutrition standards, more canned foods are in school lunches, further increasing BPA risk among children.
The new research does, however, deny once and for all any link between canned foods and a chemical that has been linked to diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Of course, this news does not quite cancel out the more serious findings about BPA.
Many containers prominently display a lack of BPA in their materials nowadays. Some products have to be BPA-free, including baby bottles and sippy cups. Companies often use synthetic products in the stead of BPA, and researchers do not know whether those are safe. They suggest federal authorities fund and support further research into the safety of BPA replacements in food packaging.