Dangerous Side Effects of Disposable Thermocol Plates & Melamine Plates

Eating hot food off plastic plates can increase the risk of kidney stones. Heating melamine crockery may harm health;


Its is a favourite of parents and picnic-goers the world over. But new research suggests that eating hot meals on melamine crockery could actually be harmful to health.


Taiwanese researchers have found that hot temperatures increase the amount of melamine we are exposed to – and this can increase the risk of kidney stones.


Read more: dailymail.co.uk/health/article-2266472/Eating-hot-food-plastic-plates-increase-risk-kidney-stones.html#ixzz3bVbaXtla


Lead researcher by Chia-Fang Wu, of Kaohsiung Medical University in Taiwan, said:’Melamine tableware may release large amounts of melamine when used to serve high-temperature foods.’


Studies of melamine toxicity in animals indicate that ingestion can cause kidney stones, kidney damage and may induce cancer.


And in 2008, melamine-tainted baby formula(causing an especially high dose) was linked to six deaths and 50,000 hospitalizations related to kidney stones and kidney disease in China.


The study was published in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine.


Thermocol contains an important thermoplastic compound, called polystyrene which is obtained by the polymerisation of styrene or phenylethene. The chemical properties of phenylethene are identical to polyethene.


It responds very slowly to bacterial decomposition in the soil, thus making the soil infertile. It also releases poisonous gases on burning, which can cause respiratory problems, or even death, when inhaled. Hence thermocol is harmful for the environment.


— Shaunak Bordoloi, Guwahati Sep 21, 2003,. THE TIMES OF INDIA


Ignorance is bliss, and for shops selling food items in hazardous disposable utensils, public’s ignorance is certainly a blessing.


Most multinational food chains use quality products while serving their food products in disposable utensils. The plates, cups and glass used by these companies are made from paper products instead of chemical-based utensils.


In contrast, local food outlets and sweetshops serve food items in disposable utensils made from Thermocol sheets. These shops are able to purchase the cups and plates at a low price compared to the high quality disposable products made from paper.


According to doctors, Thermocol sheets are injurious to health as they are not properly sterilised and can also contaminate the food served in them. As a result, people may be affected by bacterial infections, skin allergies and gastro problems.


“Most people do not know that the food served in disposable plates can be contaminated and result in health problems,” said Dr Tahir Sharif, a nutritionist working at Holy Family Hospital while talking to Dawn.


He said it was the duty of the local administration and the health department to check food outlets and other shops that were using the hazardous product.


In addition, he said there was a dire need to apprise people of the problem as most people were not even aware of the risk.


“Customers should simply refuse to accept cooked or baked food that is served in these disposable utensils because hazardous chemicals are used in their(the utensil’s) production. People should demand paper-made disposable glasses and cups for coffee, tea and other beverages,” he said.


Furthermore, Dr Sharif maintained that the products not only affected the health but also the environment.


District Officer Solid Waste Dr Mazhar Azeem was against the increased use of polythene bags and Thermocol utensils.


He said it was difficult for his department to clear drains and sewerage lines as the material clogged them. Furthermore, it was difficult to dump the disposable material at landfill sites as they did not decompose easily.


People should start using BIO-DEGRADABLE products like banana leafs or Areca plates to eat food to avoid cancer and to solve global warming issue.

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