Plastic is a wonder material. It is lightweight, versatile, and cheap. It is also highly toxic.
When the dangers of the plastic compound BPA (bisphenol A) were exposed, manufactures found similar, equally destructive compounds to replace it. To reduce these endocrine disrupting chemicals and other toxins, it is best to reduce the use of all plastics as much as possible.
Note: In addition to your health, ditching plastic is better for our planet. Some of the suggested replacements may not be sustainable or eco friendly. Choose based on your own values and budget.
Disposable plastic items like Ziploc bags, plastic wrap, solo cups, disposable straws, and takeout utensils are potentially the most harmful of plastic sources. They are typically made with plastics that degrade faster than sturdier plastic products. This means they can leach into your foods even easier - especially if you wash or reuse them. While reusing single use plastic seems like the better choice for the environment, it is a worse choice for your health. All the more reason to not use them at all.
It is not feasible, or even necessary, to replace them all. Your tv remote and light switches are just fine! Focus on the items that regularly touch your food or mouth or are exposed to heat, which breaks them down faster and may release the toxins into the air you breathe. Here are a few items you may consider swapping (gradually of course):
Luckily, there is a current emphasis on reducing plastic due to its destruction of the environment. This means there are thousands of alternatives to choose from.
I know. Our family went through the process over a span of a year or so. If you have an open budget, feel free to go on a shopping spree (links below) and replace it all at once! That would be fun and I wish we could have done it that way. But that's not realistic for most people and it certainly wasn't for us.
I advise a gradual approach. Here's how we went about it:
Tip: Have a conversation now with family members who may be making purchases for you and your kids. Tell them about your desire to protect your family from plastic toxins and request that they keep that in mind when gifting to your family. If your child does receive plastic toys, you can evaluate the risk and choose to keep it or donate it after the fact. I have found that pressing the issue when it comes to gifts rarely has a happy ending.