BPA Free Debate - Glass or Plastic?

Updated on June 07, 2013
S.S. asks from New York, NY
21 answers

Our pedi has always been adamant about using glass bottles to feed our son. We recently got into a debate about whether or not BPA free plastic bottles are safe and he said they are better than non BPA free but the safest of all is glass. I've been heating all of our food in microwavable plastic containers and am now wondering about how wise that is. Sooo... a question to all the parents out there - do you microwave and refrigerate your food in plastic or glass containers? For your little ones and toddlers, do you use glass or plastic bottles and sippy cups? Is BPA free really safe, or just a gimmick?


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answers from San Antonio on

I don't own a microwave, so I cannot heat anything in plastic. I use glass, stainless steel, or cast iron to heat thing in the oven or on the stove-top. I do store things in plastic and glass in the fridge/freezer though. I read a long time ago that storing food in plastic isn't so much the problem, it is what leaches into the food when you warm something in plastic in the microwave.

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answers from Houston on

Glass is safer by several credited reports. I microwave in glass. My kids do use plastic cups though some of the time.

Actually, microwaving anything is bad, not to mention it zaps all nutrients out of food and formula. Bottles should be heated by placing in hot water and allowing to sit for a few minutes. We rarely use the microwave. If I want to heat something up, I do it on the stove or in a toaster oven/ oven.

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answers from Dallas on

Glass. I only had one glass bottle break, and it was my dog's fault. It was kind of a freak thing, actually. I bought these silicone covers to put on them (less then a dollar each), and they never broke when I dropped, or my son threw them. I used the Evenflo classic bottles. $6.00 for three of them!

BPA is not safe. There are many MANY studies now, that clearly link BPA to many problems. I don't believe in the "we're all just fine" theory. Simply because, we are not. There is more cancer, more autism, more chronic diseases, more of everything. People are LESS healthy in our generation, then the generation before. Our children's generation is the FIRST that aren't expected to outlive their parents. It's not all bad eating habits, either. Something is causing all this, and I have to believe all the added chemicals and hormones (BPA mimics hormones) adds to the problems. To me, it's common sense. They are artificial chemicals and hormones. Our body doesn't know what to do with them. Why do we even need studies to tell us that's bad?

Anyway, I doubt you would even be able to find a bottle made with BPA now. Just about every other country has banned it's use, (Of course.) and most companies do not make them with BPA. They do substitute other chemicals, though. Not much research has been put into them, so who knows if those are safe!!

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answers from Pittsburgh on

I just posted a question about the lead and cadmium in dishes. You THINK you're doing the right thing by heating your kids food on a "dish" and really, they're ingesting lead and cadmium!
I would bet that glass is the only 100% safe way to go.
I never use plastic in the microwave. Some stuff gets REALLY hot in 2 minutes.....to refrigerate, I don't think plastic is an issue--it's just not to be exposed to extreme temps--hot OR cold.
Makes me wonder about my Pampered Chef vegetable steamer for the microwave now...

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answers from Minneapolis on

We do not use plastic anything at our house. And we definitely do not microwave any plastic packaging that commerical/prepackaged foods come in. They may not be BPA free.

We use all glass storage containers, glass plates, bowls, and drinking glasses.

When microwaving we remove foods (frozen for instance) from the original packaging and use a glass dish covered with a paper towel if needed to protect against splatters.

I have read that heating products with BPA causes it to bond and also leach into food.



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answers from Cleveland on

Hooray for your pediatrician! He sounds awesome!

I use glass as much as possible. Never put plastic in the microwave or dishwasher (wash any BPA free plastic I have by hand). I will refrigerate things in Tupperware, but have gradually been replacing all my plastic ware with glass.

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answers from Los Angeles on


When we moved into our home, I literally ripped the microwave out of the kitchen and put a $700 hood in. I didn't want that thing in my house. It's easy to use if it's staring you in the face. I won't use it, but my husband is lazy and will use it at every turn....so I got rid of it.

It increases the estrogens in the body, which lead to an increase of certain cancers. I don't use plastics AND I don't use lotions because they do the same thing. I'm just trying to decrease my certain exposure. I'm not stupid enough to NOT think that when I go to a restaurant they are not using a microwave - I know they are. If I can cut down on the exposure, then I will.

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answers from Boca Raton on

We have gotten away from plastic and use mostly glass. The only thing I ever worry about with glass is lead, but you can buy lead testers from what I understand.

To me it just makes sense to not heat plastic to very high temps - the same with non-stick surfaces on pans.

Good luck.

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answers from Albuquerque on

Glass only for reheating and storing things here. It's just as easy as plastic once you switch over. When my girls were little we did BPA-free plastic bottles and sippies, but we've switched to glass cups now that they're not dropping everything on the floor.

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answers from Los Angeles on

Hello, we weeded out all of our plastic food containers, bowls, cups, etc. about 5 years ago and now exclusively use glass to cook (microwave) and store food in. My thought on BPA-free plastics is that there are other harmful chemicals in plastic that I don't want leeching into our food. For sippy cups and canteens, we use stainless steel.

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answers from Los Angeles on

I have been debating as to whether to resopnd to this or not.

I have finally decided to jump in.

BPA may or may not be a realistic hazard. I use the word "realistic" on purpose. There are many things worth changing your behavior for. There are many things not worth the bother. What do I mean by "not being worth the bother"? I had 26 acres next to a farm where the owner had a bull kept for stud services. He told me not to let my kids get within the fence with the bull because the bull might charge and hurt my kids. I only had an old rickety barbed wire fence between my home and the bull. The bull could have easily pushed through it, if it had tried. Even though the bull had the ability to come and hurt my kids, it didn't. And I didn't keep a loaded rifle beside my front door, in case the bull knocked down the fence. I did tell my kids not to bother or tease the bull.

Do the BPA and the bull have a lot in common? Both might hurt me or hurt my family. But I have been using a microwaive to cook or warm foods in plastic since I could afford my first microwaive, back in the 70s I think. All my kids are normal. My wife is far above normal. No one has 8 fingers on either hand. No one is 8'11". No one has died from cancer, except my brother and my dad, but they both smoked like chimneys.

The government decided enamel paint let out harmful emissions for 10 years so all of the car companies had to change their paint formulas. What was the result. Almost all the cars and trucks had paint peeling and rust happening during the 80's. Yet, as a consumer, my physical health wasn't affected that I could tell, but my financial health was affected when the manufacturers had to raise their prices because of the government's ruling on paint.

Some food for thought. Good luck to you and yours.

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answers from Dallas on

We are in the plastics industry (raw materials, additives, etc) and if you test parts/billion, you might find a trace. Guess what, you can find arsenic on your hands if you are tested just right. You can find cancer causing chemicals EVERYWHERE.

SO,, Gimmick???... not necessarily but the media hype has blown it out of proportion. If it makes YOU feel safer, by all means do what you feel is safest.

You would probably be hard pressed to find plastics with BPA right now. Most companies are not using it. The BPA is simply put into a plasticized product and the amount of it is extremely low. BUT.... a lot of companies stopped using this additive.

I personally don't worry about all the what if's that could possibly cause cancer, make me sick, etc. Worrying too much can also make you sick.

I'm not saying in any way you are going overboard with your concerns... but some people borderline on the craziness and buy into any media hype and that is sad.

I am sure I'll be hit with the hate mail bandwagon now.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Missoula on

We use plastic bottles and sippys, but they have to be BPA free. Any plastic containers, even if BPA free, we do NOT heat in the microwave. We always transfer to glass bowls. It's safer! And don't even put plastic into the freezer. Same effect as if putting them in the microwave.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Orlando on

I dont know about if its a gimmick but I used glass bottles with my son and plan to with my next baby. Plastic looks nasty after a while. Now when it comes to cups I dis use bpa free, the born free ones. And my containers are glass. Why risk it?

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

We do not put any plastic in the microwave. I did not use glass bottles when my son was an infant. We used the playtex drop ins. We do not use plastic water bottles. We use kleen kanteen or stainless camelbacks. I do use teh learning curve sippy cups for his milk. We do not use any plastic dishes, even for our 2.5 yr old. I use corelle wear, which is practically unbreakable.

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answers from Washington DC on

I used plastic bottles with both of my kids. The whole BPA-free thing didn't start till my 2nd was just about done with bottles, so my choices were plastic or glass and I'd rather have plastic then being my clumsy self and breaking glass bottles.

As for the microwave, most of the time we use glass containers, but have used plastic for short warmups of under a minute.

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answers from Norfolk on

My kids use only glass and we try not to microwave anything in plastic. Instead of sippy cups, I use mason jars. I put a hole in the top with a plain hole punch normally used for paper, and put a straw (plastic) through it. I have 2 girls and a rowdy boy and have NEVER had one break. * We do have wood floors and 1 carpeted concrete floor.*



answers from Charleston on

I love Corell bowls and plates since they are almost impossible to break. I have no idea what they are made of, however, but think it must be better than plastics since it resembles china.


answers from Richmond on

What does your PEDS have against glass bottles? Because they break? Let me tell you, I used glass bottles with one of my kiddos, and I'm not exactly graceful... those suckers would have to get through into a busy street during rush hour to MAYBE break.

Most plastic is BPA free now... but seriously, WE all used bottles (BPA AND WORSE!!)... and we're all fine :) Don't think about it too much.The important thing is your baby getting the nutrition he or she needs, regardless of where it comes from.

I microwave in glass and plastic both. I also used to microwave bottles, which is supposed to be a big no-no. I refrigerate leftover milk/formula, even if it's already been heated (waste not, want not!)... seriously, don't overthink this, you'll drive yourself nuts ;)


answers from Dallas on

Ditto Twice Blessed.



answers from New York on

I'd be more concerned about the MICROWAVE than the BPA-free plastic, personally. I used Born Free bottles (plastic). Glass is heavy and hard for a baby to hold on his/her own- plus, breakage risk. Not for me.

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