We love those little plastic sachets of water aka ‘pure water’. We love those plastic cutlery, baskets, bowls etc. that are given at weddings as souvenirs. Everything we buy now comes in one sort of plastic packaging or other, from our loaves of bread to foods – mai-mai, eba, soup etc – served in takeaway plastic bags. So cheap and so convenient! Well, the bad news is that cheap and convenient can be expensive: Certain additives in plastics, known as Obesogens can leak into your food and drinks especially when hot or microwaved. These Obesogens then disrupt your hormonal functions and can lead to several illnesses, such as:
- heart disease, poor brain development in young children
- Thyroid problems
- Hormone-sensitive cancers in women viz: Breast, ovarian and endometrial,
- Prostate cancer.
It’s not only that their poor disposal has been a serious blight on our environment, both in terms of biodegradability and unsightliness, it has been irrefutably confirmed that they portend dangers for individual health. The use of these plastics is as of now unregulated in Nigeria, as far as I’m aware; we all know that sachets of ‘pure water’ left in the sun tend to taste funny, but nobody or NAFDAC has said or done anything about it. That’s what this is about, the unchecked danger that it poses and our blissful unawareness in the midst of that danger.