Science Questions

What happens when I eat plastic?

Mon, 26th Jan 2015

Listen Now    Download as mp3 from the show Lifting the Lid on Plastic

Question

Enrique asked:

Oysters and mussles contain plastic particules. What happens to me when I eat them?

Answer

Charles - With regards to human ingestion of plastics, it contributes to what we Open oyster on a market in Lyoncall the body burden of synthetic chemicals which were basically unknown before 1950. All of us now have a very heavy body burden of synthetic chemicals. Plastic is very good at absorbing synthetic chemicals that have washed into the ocean – pesticides, herbicides, industial chemicals, anything petroleum based – preferentially sticks to plastic because it’s lipophilic (oil loving) and that desorbs in our digestive systems into us. So, the body burden of synthetic chemicals in our bodies is increased by the ingestion of seafood that contains plastic.

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