Switchin’ to stainless steel

Although the American and Canadian governments can’t agree about whether polycarbonate bottles are bad for us, the fact that there is discussion at all makes me nervous enough to minimize my use of plastic in the kitchen. So nervous, in fact, that I’ve thrown out our refillable plastic water bottles and replaced them with stainless steel versions like the one here.

Results of Health Canada testing reveal that bisphenol A, the chemical that makes plastic bottles pliable, disrupts the body’s hormones and could be toxic even at low levels. Their scientists felt so strongly about these findings that they issued a ban on polycarbonate baby bottles.

I’m not the only one to extrapolate that what’s bad for babies is likely bad for kids and adults, too. In fact, stores like Mountain Equipment Co-op and Sport Check have discontinued selling Nalgene water bottles, a popular polycarbonate product, since this news was issued last winter.

Not sure if your plastic bottles contain bisphenol A? The following helpful screening info is excerpted from the American National Wildlife Federation Website.

How to identify plastic products containing BPA:
• Plastic containing BPA polymers carries the recycling symbol #7, which can also indicate other kinds of mixed plastics. The plastic may be called polycarbonate, lexan or polysulfone and is generally a clear, hard plastic, though it may be tinted different colours.
• Clear plastic baby bottles and children’s training cups are likely to be made of polycarbonate.
• If in doubt, contact the manufacturer to ask if the bottle or cup is polycarbonate.”

What do you drink water from when you’re not at home? Do you worry about the long-term effects of plastic water bottles?


9 Responses to Switchin’ to stainless steel

  1. danamccauley says:

    Breaking news! Martin just brought me an even better bottle: a Sigg. I’m going to take it hiking. I’ll get back to you with a proper impression after I use it but so far, I think I love this bottle!


  2. Kathryn says:

    I have discontinued using the plastic water bottles, but have not switched to stainless. Any stainless steel bottle that I have found has been made in China. I have concerns about the health standards in China and the carbon footprint of Chinese manufacturing. Anyone is Canada ready to take on the manufacturing challenge?

  3. Cheryl says:

    I switched to Siggs last year. I even forked over the $20 for each of my kids’ lunchboxes. I was sure they were going to lose them and I’d regret my foolishness, but they love the bottles and take good care of them. I have one for myself, too. I admit that spending $60 on water bottles is pretty ridiculous, but I easily spent that much on cases of bottled water before I switched over. Now I don’t buy bottled water at all.

  4. Gerry says:

    I recently read there are issues with Stainless (lead contamination and chromium leaching) as well as Aluminum with potential issues with altheimer’s. The article recommended cast iron or carbon steel! Can you imagine the rust issues. Who knows what to think anymore. The european version of the FDA came out with a report yesterday saying without a doubt that polycarbonate was safe.

  5. Vivien says:

    Due to the same concern I have about plastic containers, I have just purchased a Corning ceramic bowl with lid to replace my plastic lunch box – I used to microwave my lunch – A LOT !! And unfortunatley, I am still using plastic water bottle when I am not at home. Time to go shopping for a stainless steel one 🙂 🙂 🙂

  6. I’m sticking to my porcelain mugs! Fortunately, I work from home and don’t worry about this kind of thing. 🙂

    Thanks for posting about SIGG. Like Gerry, I avoid made in China products whenever possible and see that these are made in Switzerland.

    Gerry, my sister works with the Alzheimer Society and the link between the disease and aluminum is not supported. Cast iron would create rust issues in the short-term, but in the long-term I see it becoming a health-based gender issue — great for anemic women and dangerous for men.

    Strange how the simplest thing like water can become so complex.

  7. danamccauley says:

    These are terrific comments everyone! Thanks for your posts. Obviously, there’s a lot to think about when taking your water to go.

  8. Deb deMope says:

    SIGG vs Klean Kanteen and there is no contest. SIGG has some dirty little secrets that people need to understand. Please read my article, it will open your eyes.

  9. danamccauley says:

    Hi Deb,

    I checked out the Klean Kanteen bottles in an outdoorsy store in Juneau Alaska last week and I have to say that I found them to be sub par. You are, of course, entitled to your own opinion but I far prefer the Sigg bottles.

    I am still curious about your article though if you’d like to post a link.

    Charmian, thanks for the info about the Alzheimer’s Association opinion about aluminum. It’s always worried me.

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