Activist Mommy

{August 6, 2007}   Bottles Could Be Dangerous to Your Baby’s Health

baby bottleLast night I was watching the news when a story came on about baby bottles and a chemical called bisphenol A. A short story on the chemical found in plastics is here. Honestly, it seems a bit redundent that it needs to be said. We alrady know that bottled water is unhealthy and that is in part to the plastic bottle itself. The chemicals in the plastic bottles are leached out into the water you drink. And, obviously, the same thing happens to your baby’s formula in that plastic bottle. Bisphenol A has been linked in tests to “problems such as obesity, early puberty, hyperactivity, and abnormal sexual behavior and reproductive cycles”. That is a pretty scary list of issues that could come using a baby bottle. I especially wonder about the hyperactivity link with the number of children diagnosed with hyperactivity rising.

I hate to get on my high horse, but this is just one more reason I am so glad that I made the choice to breastfeed. I sat on the couch watching women on the news making comments about not knowing what to do and all I could think of was how ingrained the “baby bottle” mentality is in most Americans. Because obviously breasts are for selling cars and pleasing men. I wonder if the ones who say “Ewww” to the thought of breastfeeding thinks that exposing kids to 10 times the safe amount of an artificial sex hormone is less “disgusting”?

Edited to add that I was sent a link to a great article on this that also contains a rebuttal from the Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association (JPMA). You can read it here. They of course say that bottles are completely safe and that there is no concern from bisphenol A. Call me cynical, but isn’t that about like asking the fox if it’s safe to let him guard the henhouse? I mean the European Council of Vinyl Manufacturers says that toys with PVC are safe, because saying otherwise loses them money. So what of the JPMA?

The Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association, Inc. (JPMA) is a national trade organization representing 95% of the $7.3 billion industry.

Does anyone else smell a hint of money in their denial of health risks from bisphenol A? I know I would sure like to see what studies they have done, how it was researched, and who funded it.

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Megan says:

Hey, Activist Mommy!

You popped up in my fancy-schmancy Google alert for this post — i think that might officially make you famous? 😉

Anyway, i was prompted to comment, because I’m editor for ePregnancy, and we published a piece this year about this very issue — including a rebuttal from the JPMA… it’s all in this link, if you want to check it out.

(also, i am totally crushing on rise against right now! they will never surpass my beloved boysetsfire, but oh,i do love them!)

CJ says:

It is a bit of a high horse – yes, many women choose to bottle feed out of vanity but there are those who have the choice made for them due to illness, family situations, etc… I would have breastfed my boys but I have a chronic illness that required I be highly monitored during my pregnancies due to the medications I had to take that I COULDN’T take during my pregnancies and then had to get right back on immediately following.

Both of my boys are grown and perfectly healthy except for the oldest one’s propensity for extreme sports. 🙂

Being an activist is one thing – being preachy and self-satisfied is quite another.

activistmommy says:

CJ – You stepped right on a major pet peeve of mine: people unable to determine between choice and no choice. I’m not sure why so many seem to ahve this problem, but I’ll try to explain. You took medicatiosn that ment you could not breastfeed. So did you choose to use formula? No, you did not. You HAD to choose formula. That means there was no choice. I’m sorry, but it always bothers me when lactivist begin talking about those who choose not to breastfeed and in pops women who did not choose, but in fact had no choice. Logic shouild tell you that you are not being referred to, but that always seems to be too much for some.

On a side not I wrote about the women who CHOOSE not to breastfeed because they think it is gross. If you somehow think I am pointing at you then either you have trouble reading, or you were not honest in your reason for not breastfeeding.

As for the health of your kids, great. But don’t put your experience to mean everyone. My grandfather smoked a pack a day until he passed away in his sleep at the age of 90 and was in perfect health. But I certainly don’t visit places preaching about the harmful effects of smoking and toss that out there. Why? Because common sense tells me that one person’s perceived experience means next to nothing in the grand scale of things. Despite how you may claim your boys are healthy unless you have taken them in to a doctor to have their blood tested for traces of bisphenol A and can prove they have none it’s still just your opinion. And that means little compared to the millions of other children affected by it.

And I am quite self-satisfied, tahnk you very much. that comes from being an adult and putting my children’s needs above my wants.

Amie says:

Preach on Activist Mommy! Formula was a great invention for mothers who had to choose between watching their baby die or… well… that was the only choice. Formula is anything but a great invention fro mothers who choose between convenience and the health and well being of their child.

You know, I take that back. I mean, really, what’s so stinking convenient about trudging to the kitchen at 2 am, measuring water, waiting for it to warm while baby is screaming, dumping in the powder, checking the temp, waiting for it to cool while baby screams some more, sitting upright while holding a bottle, then trying to get a fully awake baby back to sleep? I’d much rather roll over (I’m a co-sleeper) or even just sit up, grab baby, and pop in a breast. Wake up when they are done and get them settled back in bed (since they’re probably back to sleep before their even done eating). And don’t even get me started on moms who have to try to make bottles on road trips or airplanes.

IMHO, bottles are just silly unless you really truly need them. What a hassle, what an expense, what a tame waster.

The other issue that should have been addressed here are the moms who feel like they should pump and bottle feed when in public. Many Americans still say things like “that’s what pumps and bottles are for”. Again, if feeding your child toxins is the only way to keep them alive, then by all means toxify away. Otherwise, do things the way God intended.

Morgan says:

Great points! Society was formed on the natural. Now that we’re creating artificial this, and artificial that, you wonder what is safe. There is a great breastfeeding group at I will make sure they hear what you have to say!

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