Study finds certain plates, bowls may release concerning chemical

Published On: Jan 28 2013 05:26:00 PM EST
melamine

Melamine, a chemical that sickened and killed babies in China when it was mixed in baby formula, can also be released into the body from tableware, according to a recent study.

Taiwanese researchers, who published their results in the JAMA Internal Medicine, warned that their findings don't prove that melamine is harmful to people, but that traces of the chemical show up in the urine of people eating from tableware made with melamine.

Melamine is used in some types of fertilizer and in resins used to make tableware, including plates and bowls designed for children.

Researchers found that melamine tableware may release large amounts of the chemical when used to serve foods at high temperatures.
Melamine can cause kidney stones and kidney damage.

Melamine that was mixed into baby formula killed six babies and sent thousands to emergency rooms in China in 2008.

One of the authors of the study said if a person eats two bowls of hot soup from tableware made with melamine there's a good chance they're getting too much of the chemical in their body.

Melamine is approved in the United States for use in making some cooking utensils including tableware, plastics and industrial coatings.