Exposing your child to BPA right before or after they are born could lead to stomach problems for them down the road, a study as revealed.
The report from the American Society for Microbiology found that such exposure could throw off the balance of good and bad bacteria in their stomach.
Avoiding the chemical after your child is born is just as important as doing so before because they could be exposed to it via your breast milk.
The researchers concluded that the chemical influences children are exposed to during their first few days of life can have lasting effects on their health.
BPA, which stands for bisphenol A, is an industrial chemical that has been used to make plastics since the 1960s. Exposure to BPA has been linked to a host of negative side effects.
BPA is present in many containers that store foods and beverages, such as water bottles, and research has proven that the chemical can be absorbed by foods that are stored in containers made with it.
For the study researchers tested ten pregnant rabbits which were kept on a standard lab diet and caged individually.
They were divided into two groups: one which was exposed to BPA and one that was not.
Rabbits in the group exposed to BPA were given pureed organic carrots orally from the middle of their gestational period to the seventh day after they gave birth.
The scientists concluded that BPA exposure could lead to a condition called gut bacterial dysbiosis in their children, which may cause chronic liver and colon inflammation.
Researchers are cautioning that to lessen your child’s risks of developing these adverse health effects you should consume products that are in packaging labeled BPA-free.
Additionally, you can reduce your chance of coming into contact with the chemical by reducing the amount of food you eat that comes out of a can because most cans contain BPA.
Instead of using plastic containers to store food, keeping it in glass, stainless steel or porcelain could prove healthier for your child.
EXPLAINED: YOUR GUT BACTERIA – AND WHAT THEY DO FOR YOU
The human gut has more bacteria than any other part of the body, both in number and diversity.
There are four major types of gut bacteria: Firmicutes, Bacteroidetes, Actinobacteria, and Proteobacteria.
Firmicutes play a role in energy re-absorption, and may be linked to diabetes and obesity.
Bacteroidetes account for 30 percent of all gut bacteria, and are important to our ability to digest and use energy from carbohydrates and sugars.
Acinobacteria produce bioactive metabolites, which we use in medicines like antibacterials.
Proteobacteria are a category of bacteria that include diseases like chlamydia, but exist in healthy guts.