Don't Touch That Receipt! It May Be Toxic

40% of receipts tested were slathered with bisphenol A
By Caroline Miller,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 27, 2010 10:32 AM CDT
Updated Jul 31, 2010 6:00 AM CDT
Don't Touch That Receipt! It May Be Toxic
In this July 14, 2009 photo, April Englebert displays the portion of her grocery receipt that details the amount of money saved by using her coupons, outside a grocery store in Portland, Ore.    (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

(Newser) – Sheesh: The same toxic chemical—bisphenol A—that's shown up in baby bottles and canned goods is apparently also all over the receipts you get from stores and restaurants, and in much greater amounts. BPA was found in the coating used on cash register receipts in 40% of businesses tested, including McDonald's, Whole Foods, and Wal-Mart. It comes off on your hands, a scientist tells AOL News, and can get into your bloodstream through your skin.

Tests found 250 to 1,000 times more BPA on receipts than on plastic containers and cans, meaning the people most at risk would be those who staff cash registers and bag groceries. BPA, which has been shown to disrupt the development of the brain and reproductive system in animals, has been linked to a long list of potential heath problems, and the damage can be passed along in epigenetic changes. (Read more bisphenol A stories.)

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