What are microplastics and why are they bad for you?
Microplastics are small pieces of plastic (5mm in size or less) that pollute our environment. This includes microfibers from clothing, micro-beads and any larger pieces of plastic that have broken down into smaller pieces over time. Less obvious sources of microplastic are synthetic clothing, cigarette butts, glitter, wet wipes, and many types of tea bags.
Plastics are indigestible and non-biodegradable. A large percentage of the world’s plastic ends up in lakes and oceans and either floats in large garbage patches or exist as microplastics on beaches and deeper water. The microplastics are mistaken for food by marine- or freshwater animals, ingested, and, if small enough, embed in their animal tissue and become part of the food chain.
How microplastic affects human health remains unclear. However, current results from animal and test-tube studies suggest they may have a negative effect on your health.
Reducing your plastic food packaging and replacing single-use plastic items with reusable alternatives is the most effective way to not only reduce plastic in the environment but benefit your health as well.