Plastic bottles are one of the most popular types of containers for food and household chemicals. Reuse of plastic attracts convenience and simplicity. Is PET material safe? What can be done with such containers, and what actions should be refrained from?
The dengers of reusing plastic bottles
Food-grade plastic itself does not pose a health risk even if reused. The danger is ignorance of the rules for its use.
Things to keep in mind:
✅ Some plastics contain hazardous compounds. One of them is bisphenol A, present in polycarbonates. If plastic comes into contact with cold water, there will be no negative effect. But what absolutely cannot be done is to pour boiling water into a plastic bottle. In this case, the substance enters the water, and with it into the human body.
✅ Bacteria. Prolonged use of bottles and other plastic containers from food or drinks leads to the appearance of microcracks on the surface. Such damage is often subtle, but can become a source of bacteria accumulation.
PET plastic for household reuse
PET bottles and other containers are the safest option for temporary food storage. Such containers are marked "1" (P.E.T.). There is no dangerous bisphenol A in polyethylene terephthalate. It is not present either at the stage of polymer creation or at the stage of blowing the product. As for the danger of phthalates, PET containers contain terephthalates that are harmless to humans. Orthophthalates that can harm the human body are also absent here.
PET bottles can be damaged when heated, so it is better to use such containers for warm or cool liquids, free-flowing.
There is no risk of freezing food in these containers.
The only difficulty when using polyethylene terephthalate containers – This is a quality cleaning. Plastic allows heating without deformation up to a temperature of 65°C. It is impossible to sterilize such a container. At the same time, PET surfaces are the best place for microbial growth.
Preparing a plastic bottle for safe reuse
To protect yourself from bacteria and chemicals:
✅ Wash the container thoroughly in warm water with soap or dish detergent. Rinse well, and then dry the container. The water should be warm, but not hot.
✅ Vinegar or mouthwash will help to cope with a specific smell.
✅ Use a brush to clean bottles with narrow necks.
✅ In addition to the plastic container, lids for plastic bottles. Use warm water and detergent to remove food or liquid residue.
✅ Pay special attention to the neck of – the presence of threads requires more thorough cleaning.