Now that it’s good and hot outside, it’s time to make sure everyone in the family stays properly hydrated. I have been reusing disposable plastic water bottles all summer. I even keep a plastic water bottle in the car just in case I forget to take a refrigerated one. Gross, but hot-car water is better no than water at all, right? No! Apparently I have been doing bottled water all wrong.
According to a University of Florida study, bottled water left in certain levels of heat can leach antimony and BPA into the water over time. Among other issues, BPA can cause heart problems and increase the risk of cancer. Antimony leaves you with unpleasant stomach issues like diarrhea, vomiting and stomach ulcers. Even plastic bottles claiming to be BPA-free, made of polyethylene terephthalate, still leach trace amounts of BPA.
Um, yikes? Wouldn’t it figure that plastic bottles, made for convenience, are actually a nuisance?
The levels of antimony and BPA released into the water from PET bottles are below the Environmental Protection Agency’s safety limits. Still, who really wants to drink any amount of BPA in warm water? It’s not much comfort when you consider this: Plastic bottles of all kinds — including baby bottles and sippy cups — can leach chemicals into liquid.
So what’s a thirsty mom to do for carrying drinks on the go? Recycle that plastic! Try to not keep bottled water sitting for longer than a year. This means stockpiling cases of bottled water year-round in the hot garage is a big no-no. That trusty plastic bottle left baking in the car has also got to go.
Look for bottles made of silicone or stainless steel. They are relatively stable and slow to break down. Klean Kanteen makes a great set of stainless steel water containers as well as silicone ones. Glass bottles are the absolute safest because they do not release anything into liquid at all. You can always find a silicone cover to help grip and prevent breakage.
If you absolutely must use plastic bottles, recycle them after one use. And whatever you do, don’t reuse water bottles left in the car. You may be drinking a whole lot more than just hot water.
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