Trying to get pregnant? You might want to lay off the canned goods and plastic packaging for a while. A new study found that exposure to the chemical BPA, or bisphenol A, may affect your ability to procreate.
The research, presented Monday at the American Society for Reproductive Medicine's (ASRM) annual meeting in Boston, found that prolonged exposure to BPA may increase miscarriage risk in pregnant women, and make it more difficult to become pregnant. BPA is commonly found in food packaging and paper receipts.
According to CBS News, the study looked at 114 women in early pregnancy. A blood sample was taken from each, and later divided into categories based on whether the women had given birth and or had a miscarriage. "They assigned women into four groups based on their blood levels of BPA from lowest to highest, and then assessed miscarriage risk for each group." Researchers found that women who had a miscarriage had higher BPA levels on average than women who were able to deliver a live baby.
"The work is not nearly enough to prove a link, but it adds to 'the biological plausibility' that BPA might affect fertility and other aspects of health," Linda Giudice, a California biochemist who is president of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, told USA Today.
The Federal Food and Drug Administration says BPA is safe, even though "scientists around the globe have linked BPA to myriad health effects in rodents: mammary and prostate cancer, genital defects in males, early onset of puberty in females, obesity and even behavior problems such as attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder," reports Scientific American. In California, BPA is already classified as a reproductive hazard.
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