Does reducing plastic use support a healthier lifestyle?
It is so easy to be complacent about the use of plastic in our lives and believes plastic is necessary for a convenient and comfortable way of life.
The idea of changing our lifestyle so we are not dependent on plastic in our lives may seem such an overwhelming idea that we feel stress just thinking about the idea. In this article the following will be discussed: “What is plastic?”,“ What is bad about plastic?’’,”BPA is toxic to the environment and our health”, ‘’Starch-based plastic is less toxic and more friendly to the environment.’’,‘’Is it necessary to stop using plastic?‘’, “Where do we begin to make a change in our lifestyles?‘’, “A life without plastic’’.
“What is plastic?”
According to (Wikipedia ,2018) plastic is a material that can change its shape. Plastics are a made of long chains of carbon known as polymers.
There are two sources that plastic is resourced from, they are Petroleum (Crude oil) based plastic and starch-based (vegetable fats and oils, corn starch, straw, woodchips, and food waste)plastic.
There are suggestions (Energy Digital,2017) that starch-based plastics are a step in the right direction towards a sustainable future.
”What is bad about plastic?”
There is widespread evidence that BPA (Bisphenol A)an industrial chemical which is added to polycarbonate (Petroleum-based) plastics in the manufacturing process of hard wearing plastic material and epoxy resins to produce a wide variety of products such as food and drink packaging,the coating of inside of food cans,the bottle caps,water supply pipes,and many every day used items is seeping into our daily consumed food and beverage daily goods.
BPA is toxic to the environment and our health
The body is accumulating BPA in the body. Scientific research has discovered that BPA has an effect on the endocrine systems in the body, and the brain causing behavior changes and a long list of abnormalities in the body. Various studies show very compelling evidence that BPA causes problems with kidneys, liver and heart functions, male infertility in which sperm quality is decreasing, links to various cancers. Also, Fetus and child development also has been affected. The bodies immunity has shown to be weakened.
I do not propose to be an expert and only observe that with a small amount of effort doing a search online brings vast quantities of evidential results of the dangers that BPA has on the body. The BPA plastic leaches harmful chemicals into the environment affecting all areas of the earth These chemicals are entering our food chains and water intake as chemicals are recycled through the earth natural cycles.
The ( U.S Food and Drug Aministration, 2010)-Bisphenol Applications- acknowledges the dangers of BPA to health.
The ( European Food Safety Authority) has set a historic ruling that BPA is a threat to human health.
Starch-based plastic is less toxic and more friendly to the environment
Starch-based plastic does not leach poisonous chemicals into the environment and more sustainable because of it’s organic base. However, it also influences the endocrine systems in the body and can be just as harmful.
However, Studies have shown (US National Library of Medicine,2011) that all plastic even if it does not contain, bisphenol A (BPA) added to it , all leach out Estrogenic Chemicals (EA) when stressed and under heat and over time use caused
In some cases, BPA-free products released chemicals having more EA than did BPA-containing products. It is still worrying, thinking how all plastic has some negative effect on the environment. But certainly, it would seem at least not using BPA free plastic is the least impact on the environment and the less of a greater evil to cause damage to the environment and moving towards a safer environment. However, a safer control and better way to produce alternatives plastic or no plastic with no EA chemicals emissions is a needed step for a sustainable future.
”Where do we begin to make a change in our life styles ?”
There was a time when plastic was not widely used in household or construction but from the 1950’s mass production of plastics has increased exponentially, (Blastic, 2018).
Society has become complacent and so reliant on plastic in daily life that it may be hard for many people to think of a life without plastic.
News articles such as was recently published by the (Daily Mail 2018) reported the evidence revealed by one scientific research that, ‘Seafood lovers accumulate in their body 11.000 pieces of plastic each year when they regularly eat just one portion of mussels that can contain up to 90% particles of plastic. Such news articles are typical of what is published regularly in journals, newspapers and other media. This is causing people to think more about changing their lifestyle.
A life with out Plastic?
There are many useful online information sources for alternative living practices to reduce plastic in our lives. Here are some I liked:
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