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Student raises concern over school cafeteria practice with photo of provided utensils: 'If you think that's bad...'

"Not to worry."

"Not to worry."

Photo Credit: iStock

A student who raised concern about a certain school choice learned that was the least of their worries.

In the r/mildlyinfuriating subreddit, they shared a photo of a white plastic knife that had most of its teeth bent or broken.

"Just found that the plastic knifes in my school are terrible at cutting and that I've been ingesting microplastics," they wrote.

Photo Credit: Reddit

Users' comments were dystopian.

"You've been ingesting them for a long long time sadly," one said.

Another read: "Boy if you think that's bad wait until you hear about water."

And a third: "Babies are being born with it. You're not special. We're all the children of microplastics!"

It is indeed hard to think about anything else once you learn that microplastics — pieces of plastic less than 5 millimeters in diameter — have been found in human organs, including the heart, placentablood, and urine. They're in our air, water, soil, and food.

This poster tried to address the issue a few months prior but got nowhere.

As another Redditor wrote, "Microplastic is our generation's lead."

The hazards of microplastics aren't known, but scientists are increasingly worried. Made of toxic petrochemicals, they have been shown to cause symptoms similar to those of dementia in mice.

It's no surprise the material has been found from Mount Everest to Antarctica, as goods become contaminated by microplastics and food and other items are packaged in plastic, which doesn't break down and thus instead fragments into smaller and smaller pieces as it degrades.

You can reduce your exposure to plastic by avoiding heating food in plastic packaging and storing hot food in plastic containers; use glass or steel vessels instead. Swapping out fast and high-fat foods for fresh, minimally processed foods can help, too, as can using wood, stainless steel, and silicone tools instead of plastic ones.

"Not to worry, you're already full of them," one user said. "We've destroyed the planet to the point it's inescapable. Have a lovely crisis."

Another recommended: "Could you try bringing your own to school? And rinse in the bathroom before putting back in your bag. If metal would be a problem you can get bamboo sets that still do a good job of cutting."

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