Pregnancy Safety

Q&A: Is Bpa Safe During Pregnancy?

Should I be concerned about drinking from plastic bottles with BPA while pregnant?

Yes, although more research still needs to be done. Bisphenol-A, or BPA, is a compound found in many plastic food containers, such as water bottles and cans that hold food. There has been some concern that exposure to BPA in extremely high doses may cause birth defects and miscarriage. Other studies have related BPA exposure in utero with low birth weight and childhood asthma, but more research is needed to confirm this link. In the meantime, it's a good idea to limit exposure to BPA during pregnancy.

Not sure if your water bottle's safe? One way to identify plastics that may contain BPA is to look at the recycle code. Containers marked with a 3 or 7 may contain BPA, while containers marked with a 1, 2, 4, 5, or 6 are more likely to be BPA-free. Check the US Health and Human Services website (hhs.gov/safety/bpa) for more advice. [Updated 07-07-2011]

By Ashley S. Roman, MD, ob-gyn and clinical assistant professor at New York University School of Medicine