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There is tremendous concern about microplastics and what effects they have on humans when ingested (yes, they are found in our bodies). Microplastics are the tiny plastic particles that occur as plastic breaks down over time. They have been found in foods that we eat, water that we drink, and basically everywhere.

A new study confirms that bottled water is a huge source of microplastics in our diet. The researchers counted the microplastics in 3 brands of bottled water (without revealing the brands) and found that a liter contained an average of 240,000 plastic fragments. This is 10 to 100 times more than previous estimates, which had been based on larger plastic particle sizes.

Microplastics are 1 µm to 5 mm in length, while nanoplastic particles are even smaller plastic pieces - less than 1 µm or micrometer. (In contrast: human hair is generally about 70 micrometers thick). Nanoparticles are thought to be more toxic because they can more easily get into the body (into the lungs, blood, and organs) due to their small size.

Currently it is unknown what or if there are any effects from all these plastic particles in our bodies, but scientists are worried.

From Science Daily: Bottled water can contain hundreds of thousands of previously uncounted tiny plastic bits

In recent years, there has been rising concern that tiny particles known as microplastics are showing up basically everywhere on Earth, from polar ice to soil, drinking water and food. Formed when plastics break down into progressively smaller bits, these particles are being consumed by humans and other creatures, with unknown potential health and ecosystem effects. One big focus of research: bottled water, which has been shown to contain tens of thousands of identifiable fragments in each container. ...continue reading "Large Numbers of Plastic Particles Are In Bottled Water"

From Science Daily:

Don’t drink the (warm) water, study says

But a scientist warns Americans not to drink water from plastic bottles if it's been sitting in a warm environment for a long time. A research team examined 16 bottled water brands at 158 degrees for four weeks. The study found that as bottles warmed over the four-week period, antimony and BPA levels increased.

Plastic water bottles are made from polyethylene terephthalate. When heated, the material releases the chemicals antimony and bisphenol A, commonly called BPA.

While the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has said BPA is not a major concern at low levels found in beverage containers, it continues to study the chemical’s impacts. Some health officials, including those at the Mayo Clinic, say the chemical can cause negative effects on children’s health.And antimony is considered a carcinogen by the International Agency for Research on Cancer, part of the World Health Organization.

Of the 16 brands, only one exceeded the EPA standard for antimony and BPA....Based on the study, storage at warm temperatures would seem to not be a big problem, Ma said. Ma’s study found that as bottles warmed over the four-week period, antimony and BPA levels increased.The UF scientist warned against leaving bottled water in a hot garage for weeks on end or in your car all day during the summer....Drinking that water occasionally won’t be dangerous, but doing so regularly could cause health issues, she said.