Did you know that the average person ingests about 5g of plastic per week, equivalent to one credit card? The amount of plastic absorbed by the human body often exists in the form of microplastic particles in daily food and drinking water. This is an alarming statistic for human health and the surrounding environment.
What are microplastics? Why do we eat them?
Plastic particles (Microplasma – smaller than 5 mm in size) and microplastic particles (Nanoplasma – 1,000 times smaller than plastic particles) have been found by scientists in the intestines and feces of humans (announced in 2018). .
These plastic particles come from two main sources: Manufactured products containing plastic particles or powder such as toothpaste, detergents, sunscreen, etc. Second is from large pieces of plastic through radiation. ultraviolet rays, mechanical abrasion and biochemical changes of the environment. Plastic particles have been detected in the environment such as rivers, seawater and even table salt.
With the increasing demand for plastic, the environment is experiencing plastic waste pollution. An estimated 8.8 million tons of plastic waste is dumped into the ocean each year, and 276,000 tons of plastic are currently floating. Plastic pieces are often ingested by fish and other creatures. Therefore, seafood is the most common food source containing microplastics.
Are microplastic particles harmful to human health?
The specific impact of microplastics on human health is still being researched, and we are already facing this global problem – plastic waste and human health. However, there have been reports of microplastic accumulation in the kidneys, liver, and intestines of mice and detection of microplastics in human fetuses. Microplastics accumulate in the liver, kidneys and intestines, increasing the level of oxidants in the liver. They also cause brain-toxic molecules to increase.
In addition, microplastics also contain many other ingredients that are harmful to health such as heavy metals and bisphenol A (BPA) that can contaminate food. They affect the endocrine system and fertility, especially in women.
Although there is no official conclusion on the harmful effects of microplastics on human health, we should minimize exposure and absorption, such as avoiding the use of disposable and reusable plastic products. Use plastic products scientifically and consume foods of clear origin.