Plastic is everywhere. And it could be making you sick. As higher concentrations of microplastic particles are found throughout the world, in the air, soils and water, more and more research is suggesting that all this plastic could have negative health impacts, including on babies, children, and our ability to have children. This is particularly a danger for the Global South, which is suffering disproportionately from plastic pollution.

In Plastic Diet, co-hosts Lisa Ann Pinkerton (former NPR reporter) and Christian Roselund (formerly of Rocky Mountain Institute, Pacifica) look at where plastic waste comes from, where it goes (hint: not some magical “away” place), what’s in it, and what research tells us it is likely doing to our bodies. And we look at what we can do about it, including how we can design for a different world without plastic pollution.

Plastic Diet features UN-recognized Land Hero, social entrepreneur, and journalist Patricia Kombo, scientist and researcher Kam Sripada, centre manager at the Centre for Digital Life Norway, and Beth Rattner, the executive director of the Biomimicry Institute.

Subjects discussed

  • Sources of plastic pollution
  • Impact of plastic pollution on the Global South
  • Documented health risks from toxins in plastics
  • Status of research on health effects of plastic pollution
  • Challenges in studying health impacts of microplastics and nanoplastics
  • The false promise of recycling as a solution to plastic pollution
  • Fashion’s role in microplastic pollution 
  • Techniques for redesigning textiles to mimic nature 
  • Plastic-eating fungus, (yes, you heard us- a new magic mushroom)
  • Alternatives to single-use plastics (a.k.a. Milk ATMs)

Resources/Links

Also: Want more information about children’s health, microplastics, and other environmental hazards? Check out Little Things Matter, where Kam and an international team of scientist-advocates share the latest research and tips for families to reduce their exposures. You can find videos and more information on their website: littlethingsmatter.ca/