Health alert! This commonly used plastic chemical ups your risk of premature delivery

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A common plastic chemical that is widely used to manufacture plastic containers and every day plastic storage boxes can put women at risk of having a premature delivery, says a study.

A common plastic chemical that is widely used to manufacture plastic containers and every day plastic storage boxes can put women at risk of having a premature delivery.

The study that was conducted by Winthrop University Hospital and Kaiser Permanente Southern California found that pregnant women with higher blood levels of a common plastic chemical (BPA) are more likely to deliver their babies early. The study that was led by an Indian-origin researcher investigated the role of Bisphenol A, commonly known as BPA blood levels on risk of preterm birth.

"Women are continuously exposed to BPA because it's used in the construction and coatings of food containers and its release into food is increased by microwave or other heat sources," said Ramkumar Menon, assistant professor at The University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) at Galveston, US.

"In fact, BPA is so widely used that nearly all women have some level of exposure. Widespread use of BPA in materials of our daily life and our findings that all patients have some level of exposure suggests that contact with these materials is unavoidable," Menon pointed out.

What the study says

The researchers analysed blood samples from pregnant women when they were admitted to the hospital for labour and delivery and from the amniotic fluid of the foetus collected during labour. Increased BPA concentration is associated with an increased risk for preterm birth, the findings showed. The study was published in The Journal of Maternal-Fetal and Neonatal Medicine.

3 Common every day chemicals to be avoided during pregnancy

1. Phthalates: Phthalates are chemicals that are used to increase the durability, longevity and transparency of plastics that are known to be endocrine disruptors. Studies say that they can adversely affect pregnant woman and can also lead to breast cancer.

2. Pesticides: Pesticides and insecticides contain chemicals that are used to attack the nervous system of the insects and cause them to die. During the first trimester of pregnancy, the nervous system is rapidly developing in your baby, so you definitely want to avoid any type of contact with pesticides during this time, says research.

3. Triclosan: An ingredient commonly found in antibacterial soaps, pregnant women should steer clear of the common antibacterial ingredients triclosan and triclocarban, says science. Animal studies have found that these chemicals can cause developmental and reproductive abnormalities.

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