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Old 15-01-2019, 06:23 PM   #513
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Could receipts cause cancer? Scientists warn 90% of the papers doled out by shops 'contain hormone-disrupting chemicals thought to be carcinogenic'

Receipts are made of 'thermal paper' which nearly always contains BPA
Experts behind the findings have warned to handle receipts as little as possible
The chemical has already been linked to infertility, autism, obesity and diabetes

By Vanessa Chalmers Health Reporter For Mailonline
Published: 18:07, 15 January 2019 | Updated: 18:10, 15 January 2019

Up to 90 per cent of receipts contain cancer-causing chemicals, experts have warned.

Receipts which use ink that fade over time are made with 'thermal paper' which contains BPA (bisphenolA).

Studies have shown the chemical can lead to hormone-dependent cancers, and has previously been linked to infertility, autism, ADHD, obesity, type 2 diabetes, premature births and early onset of puberty.

There are already concerns about the public being exposed to BPA, which is often found in plastics.

We should avoid storing receipts in purses, wallets, or cars, according to Professor Nicolás Olea, from the University of Granada, Spain.

BPA is added to receipts to make their writing darker without using ink, and is also found in plastic water bottles and food containers.

International researchers, led by the University of Granada, analysed 112 thermal paper receipts and tickets from Brazil, Spain and France.

'We can recognize this kind of paper because it instantly turns black if we put it close to a heat source like, for example, a match,' Professor Olea said.

More than 90 per cent of the receipts collected in Brazil and Spain had BPA - but only half of the receipts collected in France presented BPA, the findings, published in Environmental Research, showed.

The French government has taken action to the reduction of the use of that chemical compound in thermal paper since 2014.

The researchers warn that we should be careful about handling the receipts.

'For example, tickets should not get in contact with food – for instance, meat or fish – while unpacking it in the kitchen,' Professor Olea said.

'Moreover, we should not crumple the tickets to throw them in the trash, play with them, write notes on them, or store them in cars, purses or handbags.

'In short, we should manipulate this kind of tickets as little as possible.

'They are easily identified by the customer since they are those receipts that, after some time, lose what they have printed on them and, when you are going to return the trousers you bought, the cashiers tell you that they cannot see anything.

'Very often, the only thing you find is a fine white powder that comes off when taking them out of the handbag or purse. BPA is, precisely, that white powder that sticks to your fingers.'
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