Bisphenol A (BPA), a chemical found in plastic containers and metal-can linings, has been linked to various health problems including diabetes, obesity, cancer, and hyperactivity. And many Americans are exposed to significant amounts. Here are a few easy ways to minimize your daily exposure.

Read plastic labels. Polycarbonate plastics that contain BPA will have the letters PC or the recycling codes 3 and 7. And remember: Even a plastic container labeled “microwave-safe” may leach chemicals when heated. Always use ceramic, porcelain, or glass containers for storing and reheating leftovers.

Replace cans with cartons. Cartons are a good alternative to canned soups, many of which have tested positive for BPA. For example, Dr. McDougall’s Ready to Serve soup comes in BPA-free packaging made with paper from sustainably managed forests. Use powdered infant formula instead of canned liquid formula. Try Nature’s One Baby’s Only Organic Dairy Formula.

Choose fresh or frozen fruits and vegetables. In addition to avoiding BPA, you’ll also sidestep extra sodium, sugar, and potential calories from the liquids used for canning.

Pick water bottles wisely. Opt for linerless stainless steel or plastic labeled BPA-free instead of aluminum bottles, which often contain liners made with epoxy resins. Glass water bottles, such as Lifefactory Beverage Bottles, also can be a safe and durable option.. Also purchase nonpolycarbonate baby bottles, such as those from Born Free.

Beware of plastic dishes. Avoid washing plastic dishes with hot water or harsh dishwashing soaps and discard any scratched or worn plastic containers. Not only can scratches harbor germs, but they also can lead to greater release of BPA.