October 25/London/Times of India -- A study says exposure to bisphenol A (BPA), a common chemical used in plastic products, could cause behavioral problems in baby girls. Researchers at Harvard University have found that exposure to BPA while in the womb can make girls as young as three years aggressive and hyperactive, the Daily Mail reported.

BPA, which is used to harden plastics, can be found in lining of tins and bottles and the ends of knives and forks.

In their research, the researchers at the university's School of Public Health compared levels of the chemical in 244 pregnant women. Each one provided three urine samples during pregnancy, and another at birth, which were tested for BPA.

When the children reached the age of one, the researchers measured their levels of BPA and did so again over the next two years. Once the children turned three, their mothers all filled in a survey about their behavior. The researchers found that girls were more likely to be hyperactive, aggressive, anxious and depressed and unable to control themselves if their mothers had recorded higher levels of BPA during pregnancy . The study found no such link among boys.

The researchers think girls' hormones may make them more sensitive to BPA. They said doctors should advise worried women to reduce their exposure to BPA during pregnancy.

 From the October 25, 2011, Prepared Foods' Daily News.