Here's one ingredient you won't find on the label of that canned food you're serving your kids: Bisphenol-A (BPA), a chemical that has been linked to a wide array of health issues such as reproductive abnormalities, cancer, diabetes and heart disease.
The fact that BPA is found in food packaging is nothing new. But a new study from the San Francisco-based Breast Cancer Fund found BPA in all six canned foods that it tested that are marketed directly to kids.
The study looked at Annie's Homegrown Cheesy Ravioli, Campbell's Disney Princess Cool Shapes, Shaped Pasta with Chicken in Chicken Broth, Campbell's Spaghettios with Meatballs, Campbell's Toy Story Fun Shapes, Shaped Pasta with Chicken in Chicken Broth, Chef Boyardee Whole Grain Pasta, Mini ABC's & 123's with Meatballs, and Earth's Best Organic Elmo Noodlemania Soup.
Food samples from all six tested positive for BPA contamination, with the Disney Princess and Toy Story pasta meals testing highest:
The levels of BPA we found in these canned foods marketed to children are of great concern because BPA disrupts the body's delicate hormonal systems. While a child-sized serving of these foods may result in BPA exposure at a level of concern, the repeated servings of canned soups, pastas, vegetables, fruits that a child eats in a week, in a year, and throughout her developing years, are what drive our Cans Not Cancer campaign.
The Breast Cancer Fund has several tips for reducing your risk and enjoying your favorite foods without resorting to cans.