Do canned foods cause cancer? Are they truly dangerous for consumption? Is it possible one falls ill after eating canned foods? These are some of the questions that have been put to me by people who know I studied Food Science and Technology in School. I have always given them the same answer; this same answer is what I am going to give here. A classmate of mine asked this question in class and the professor in charge that day explained so many things to us about the relationship between canned foods and cancer.
Why Do People Think They Could Have Cancer By Eating Canned Foods?
Bisphenol A (BPA) is a chemical which has been in use for years in clear plastic bottles and food-can liners. Some studies have linked Bisphenol A to reproductive abnormalities and a heightened risk of breast and prostate cancers, diabetes, and heart disease. This is why people get so scared when they are offered canned food.
This chemical, also called BPA was also found to cause actions in the body like those caused by the body’s own sex hormones e.g. Oestrogen. This coupled with the revelation that BPA used in lining of food cans could lead to the development of breast and prostate cancers have made people the world over scared of consuming canned foods.
“We should not set a place for bisphenol A at the dinner table,” Elizabeth Hitchcock, a public health advocate for the U.S. Public Interest Research Group, said at a news conference on Capitol Hill.
But Is There A Chance of Getting Cancer From Canned Foods?
First of all, let me inform you that before chemicals are approved to be used in food or food packages, they usually go through serious years of testing on experimental animals. The results from these animals are then evaluated and acceptable daily intake of the chemicals are determined. It is always taken into consideration that our body mass and some other factors are different from those of the experimental animals before making this informed decisions.
The limits that are prescribed are also always way way below that level that showed no observable adverse effect on experimental animals. These animals usually have similar body system as humans.
COMING SOON: Danger of Deadly Botulism In Canned Foods
Now, back to our question, I can inform you that recent research has shown that the level of BPA being used in industries today do not pose any risk of cancer in humans. This has been established over the years but serious concerns over the risk of developing cancer from consumption of canned foods came up again between 2008 and 2010.
This prompted many researchers to go back to the laboratory to study the adverse effects of this chemical on animals again.
Not long ago, the United States Government officials reported in a study that the chemical had no effect on rats fed thousands of times the amount a typical person ingests. This finding was reported in the journal of Toxicological Sciences. This result bolster results from previous researches that told us BPA at levels found in food cans would not lead to development of cancer.
This recent research published in the Toxicological Sciences journal both support and extend the conclusion from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration that BPA is safe as currently used.
So, you can continue to enjoy your canned food as it has been established that the BPA in the can of your food isn’t so bad after all.