About 99% of Us Have Synthetic “Forever Chemicals” in Our Bodies That We Can’t Escape
About 99% of us have synthetic chemicals in our blood that are known as forever chemicals because they don’t break down in the human body or the environment.
These PFAS, or perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances, are a group of at least 4,700 synthetic chemicals that have been in commercial production since the 1940s to make surfaces resist stains, water, and grease.
They are all around us and nearly inescapable from our daily lives. They coat paper, food containers, dental floss, rugs, furniture, outdoor clothing, cookware, and cleaning products.
People can be exposed to PFAS through contaminated drinking water, food, and air, as well as through simple contact with commercial products made with the chemicals. PFAS move easily through air and water, can quickly travel long distances, and accumulate in sediment, soil, and plants. They also have been found in dust and food, including eggs, meat, milk, seafood, fruits, and vegetables.
PFAS concentrate in our organs, tissues, and cells. Exposure has been linked to birth defects, developmental issues, infertility, cancer, liver damage, and thyroid disease. Researchers have also documented that PFAS exposure reduces the effectiveness of vaccines.
Children are found to be more at risk because they can ingest more PFAS relative to their body weight from food and water and through the air. They also put more objects into their mouths. Studies show that the chemicals harm children by causing kidney dysfunction, delayed puberty, asthma, and altered immune function.
Scientists think that the chemicals may harm pregnant women and their developing babies by affecting their gene regulators and hormones that control two of the body’s most critical functions: metabolism and immunity. PFAS can also alter levels of both mothers’ and babies’ thyroid hormones, which oversee brain development, growth and metabolism, and also play a role in immunity, according to a New York Times report.
According to the article, women exposed to PFAS during pregnancy have higher risks of gestational diabetes and pre-eclampsia. Their babies are more likely to undergo abnormal growth in utero, leading to low birth weight, and they later face an increased risk of childhood obesity and infections.
The Environmental Protection Agency has spent years debating nationwide rules to limit PFAS and exposure. Environmental activists have urged the EPA for years to set enforceable limits for PFAS in tap water. Yet nothing has been done.
But now, the government under the Biden administration appears ready to act. The administration has committed to a three-year PFAS strategy with plans and deadlines, including new rules for drinking water limits and a proposed Superfund designation and reporting requirements.
But experts say contamination has reached crisis levels in the United States, and they question whether recent efforts by the government to attempt to regulate PFAS will be enough.
“This new attention still falls short of what’s required to confront an unprecedented crisis that affects the health of the entire United States and countless people across the world,” David Bond, associate director of the Center for the Advancement of Public Action at Bennington College in Vermont, wrote in The Guardian.
How We Help Victims of Toxic Exposure
Was your child born with birth defects after exposure to PFAS? Seek justice with the help of our experienced birth defects attorneys. We’ve battled corporate giants on behalf of individuals like you for 20 years, aggressively fighting those responsible for dangerous chemicals and the birth defects and personal injuries they cause. If you have a child with birth defects caused by dangerous products, we can help.