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Travel Mugs and Your Health: Stinky, Spilling, and Scalding Travel Mugs

Through trial and error, combined with a long-standing love of coffee, we’ve found that some travel mugs are better then others.  If you’ve ever owned a coffee travel mug that’s dumped scalding liquid into your lap or have had your safety compromised by a travel mug flying from your car’s cup holder, you’ll know what we mean.  Though there are excellent ceramic travel mugs and stainless steel travel mugs to choose from, many travel mugs available on the market are made from plastic.  As new research has indicated that some plastics may be had for your health, this health question is worth exploring.  Taking the time to invest in the right coffee travel mug will improve your morning routine, commute, and may benefit your long-term health.

First and foremost, consider your immediate safety.  If you’re like us and you enjoy your coffee on the go, take care to choose a well functioning coffee mug—we recommend stainless steel or ceramic travel mugs that are comfortable to drink from, the proper size for a snug fit in your car cup holder, and leak proof.  Not to mention easy to hold, easy to clean, and well insulated.  Sounds difficult to find?  Many ceramic travel mugs and stainless steel travel mugs meet those criteria.

We encourage you to take note of the growing body of research supporting evidence that BPA, a weak estrogenic compound linked to a variety of health problems (infertility, prostate cancer, breast cancer) is a main component in polycarbonate plastic, a hard plastic component used in kitchen utensils, plastic travel mugs, and food storage containers.

We encourage you not to transport your hot beverages, especially coffee or tea in a plastic travel mug.  Instead, opt for a ceramic travel mug or stainless steel travel mug to avoid chemicals and these harmful plastics.  Be careful of screw on lids and lids found on plastic travel mugs, as when left unwashed can breed bacteria in nooks and crannies.  Travel mugs that sit for long stretches of time with old coffee, tea, or dairy product inside become a breeding ground for bacteria.  Choose a travel mug that’s easy to wash and you’ll enjoy those other health benefits.

Speaking of which, it’s understandable that you won’t be able to wash your plastic coffee travel mug after every use.  Over time, you may begin to notice a permanent smell lingering around your plastic travel mug, reminiscent of old coffee and cream that won’t fade or go away, despite many soapy washings.  The soft plastic seal around the lid is particularly problematic, and the smell won’t lessen even when soaked in very hot water and detergent.  Is there any solution to the plastic coffee travel mug stink?  We advise you to skip the entire scenario and invest in a ceramic travel mug—those are less likely to hold an odor, and can easily be washed in a dishwasher.  Ceramic and stainless steel travel mugs are durable, attractive, and affordable.  Learn more about the different types of ceramic travel mugs available.

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