You might have felt a burning sensation down the throat each time you took a sip of that hot tea from a plastic or a styrofoam cup at your favourite roadside tea-stall.
You might be one who takes home smoking hot chowmein in a thin polythene grab bag or, sometimes, a plastic container.
Or, you might be sipping mineral water from a bottle that the shopkeeper handed over to you from a crate lying in the open under this summer heat.
What you do not realise is that you are slowly poisoning yourself.
Eventually, the chances of you developing kidney stone or, worse, cancer become stronger as you continue consuming hot food delivered to you in plastics bags or bowls or drink water from carelessly stored bottles.
The mineral water bottles are made from polyethylene terephthalate, the thinnest of the plastic containers.
- They should not come in contact of heat and should NEVER be reused.
- They are not meant for reuse because bacteria builds-up over a period of time in the bottles, which is why they carry these words: Crush The Bottle After Use.
If the mineral water bottles are kept in heat (like in direct sunlight), there is a very high risk of the water getting infected by chemicals, such as Antimony and BPA (Bisphenol-A), from the plastic.
While Antimony causes diseases of the lung and heart, BPA, which is like estrogen going into the body, causes this:
At the same time, hot food in plastic containers, styrofoam cup, or plastic grab bags allows chemicals to break away from the plastic and infect the food.
Styrofoam reacts with anything hot – coffee, tea or food – resulting in a chemical called styrene leaching out. Styrene causes a thousand problems in the human body.
Be informed that cancer, loss of vision and hearing, and impaired memory are the dangerous ones.
Plastic containers also leach out polyethylene, polyvinyl chloride, polystyrene – all of which are harmful to the body.
And do I need to even mention what such a thin plastic would cause when exposed to hot food?
Is there a solution?
You cannot avoid plastic. You can only practice safe consumption, like actually crushing the bottle after first use, or not eating hot food from or storing edibles in a plastic container.
You MUST NOT reheat food in styrofoam containers neither should you sip hot coffee from them. You may take great care at home but you cannot be certain about your favourite food joint.
Oh, please now, don’t blame the government! Even though there are rules issued by the Ministry of Health And Family Welfare that lay down Indian Standards Specifications for packaging of food, it is laughable to even imagine that the tea-stall owner or street-food vendor would be following them to the dot.
So, keep the plastic away from food and…