Although the levels of phthalates and BPA in the group that received a handout did not change, they also did not drop, as the researchers had hoped. Sathyanarayana and her colleagues are currently working on creating educational materials that are more user-friendly with videos on how to grocery shop and prepare foods.
Even though "there's likely contamination higher up in the food chain, in growing and processing the food, there are still lots of things you can do to reduce your exposure," Sathyanarayana said. These steps include avoiding plastics that could contain phthalates and BPA, storing food in glass containers and not heating foods in plastic containers.
"The same advice that your doctor gives you to eat a low-fat diet, less processed foods and more fruits and vegetables will probably also reduce your consumption of phthalates," Janssen said.
You can find out more about phthalates, BPA and other chemicals at the Natural Resources Defense Council Chemical Index.
SOURCES: Sheela Sathyanarayana, M.D., M.P.H., assistant professor, pediatrics, University of Washington, Seattle Children's Research Institute; Brent Collett, Ph.D., attending psychologist, Seattle Children's Hospital; Steven Hentges, executive director of the Polycarbonate/BPA Global Group, American Chemistry Council, Washington, D.C.; Maida Galvez, M.D., associate professor, pediatrics and preventive medicine, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai University, New York City; Sarah Janssen, M.D., Ph.D., senior scientist, health and environment program, Natural Resources Defense Council, San Francisco; Feb. 27, 2013, Journal of Exposure Science and Environmental Epidemiology
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