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Chemical in plastic linked to Type 2 diabetes

A common chemical found in plastic food packaging may be increasing rates of Type 2 diabetes and heart disease, a new study has shown.

Researchers from the Peninsula Medical School in Exeter found people exposed to higher levels of bisphenol A (BPA) were more likely to have Type 2 diabetes, heart attacks and angina.

The results were obtained by testing the urine of 1,455 men and women aged 18 to 74 for traces of BPA. However, the scientists do not yet know if there is a causal connection between the chemical and the development of Type 2 diabetes.

Further research required

Dr Victoria King, Research Manager at Diabetes UK, said: "Around 100,000 new cases of Type 2 diabetes are diagnosed every year, which is why quality research into the cause and prevention of the condition is vital.

"The scientists themselves admit that there are limitations to this study. We would need to see further research into whether or not high levels of BPA actually cause Type 2 diabetes before we draw any firm conclusions.

"In the meantime, eating a healthy balanced diet and taking regular physical activity remain essential components to managing and, in some cases, preventing Type 2 diabetes."

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