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Dangerous microplastics – our life in plastic

08.11.2019 18:04

Dangerous microplastics – our life in plastic

Plastic and plastics are ubiquitous and our modern society can no longer be imagined without them. But how do they behave when it comes to our health?

It's just over a year old now, the study by the Fraunhofer Institute for Environmental, Safety and Energy Technology on "Microplastics and Synthetic Polymers in Cosmetic Products and Detergents". The study revealed that 977 metric tons of microplastic and 46,900 metric tons of dissolved polymers from Germany alone enter our wastewater every year. Microplastics has thus unfortunately become an integral part of our environment. The question that inevitably arises: How dangerous is microplastics for us and our health? If we search the Internet for answers, it is striking that the topic is either trivialized or not differentiated. In the first case, it is often pointed out that there are no long-term studies on this topic yet. In the second case, microplastic opponents often offer a target due to the lack of a strong industrial lobby.


Our Plastic Planet Earth

Whatever you turn it around, it is indisputable that plastic is ubiquitous and, according to a study by UNEP (United Nations Environmental Programme), now accounts for around 80% of all waste in the ocean. With 675 tons of garbage per hour worldwide, this is an enormous amount. However, it is not only the pollution and littering of our planet that is problematic, but also the hazardous substances contained in plastic that can affect our health.


Not all plastics are the same

If the topic is considered holistically, it is essential to differentiate between the different types of plastics: Because the different types have different implications for our organism. It is worth taking a closer look at the bottom of packaging or bottles - even better: "Plastic fasting" and thus preferring to reach for the glass bottle and strictly avoid plastic products wherever possible. But what effect should the various types of plastic be responsible for? And where are these in it?


Bisphenol A - Classification as a substance of very high concern

If one considers the effects of this chemical, one is inevitably afraid and anxious. This substance is contained as a plasticizer in polycarbonate and can be found, for example, in food packaging or plastic dishes. Since the chemical is absorbed by the mucous membranes of the mouth and can be dissolved by hot liquids, this substance can cause serious damage to health by absorbing even the smallest amounts. Since it is a hormonal chemical, hormonal diseases such as uterine cysts, hormone disorders or lymphomas can result. But also cancer, Parkinson's disease, liver problems, diabetes or ADHD seem to be related to Bisphonal A.


Phthalates - plasticizers that have it in them

And it's good! You can find phthalates (DEHP, DIBP, BBP, DBP and DIPP) in the most diverse everyday products. Whether in foils, PVC floor coverings, textiles or food packaging, etc., these plasticizers are always used by industry as soon as plastics need to be made elastic and flexible. Since phthalates are not chemically bound to the plastic, they can unfortunately escape easily. The chemicals are quickly released into the room air or into house dust and can thus be absorbed by humans through the air they breathe. Food intake is also a potential source of danger. The Austrian Federal Environment Agency also comments on the worrying damage to health on its website. Here the impairment of male reproduction, damage to the liver, nerves and immune system as well as overweight and diabetes are mentioned.


PAKs - Brisant plasticizers

In our daily lives, contact with PAHs, i.e. polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, is difficult to manage with. Not only do hundreds of these substances exist, but they can also be found in a wide variety of products and are emitted, for example, by car exhaust fumes. It is particularly alarming that the scientific EU Food Committee has even classified 15 of the 250 known PAHs as carcinogenic. Problematic: Other compounds are also considered to be of very high concern. For this reason, maximum levels have been adopted for some selected polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in foodstuffs. Unfortunately, however, these limits are often not observed. In 2015, for example, the Stiftung Warentest identified 23 of the 25 products tested as containing PAHs in the test of gourmet oils and even identified two products as not marketable.


Doing what? Our tip!

Basically, we recommend a strict "plastic fast". Try to do without plastic wherever possible. So it is better to use a glass than a plastic bottle. Even better: filter your water yourself and drink purified water from the tap. You are not only good for the environment, but also for your health. However, as you can also come into contact with harmful plastic materials through the air and environmental influences and these can accumulate in your tissue, we advise you to support your body in its own detoxification. Dr.reinwald CLEAN series For this we can recommend our high-quality CLEAN series to you. With the dr.reinwald Clean products you support your detoxifying organs such as intestines, liver, kidneys and lymph in a targeted, effective and above all gentle way.


Find out more about our Clean series here