Did you know that many everyday products contain “forever chemicals” that build up in your system and cause health issues? Some of the most common chemical compounds to do this are called per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, also referred to as “PFAs”. PFAs can be found in personal care products, cosmetics, air and water, but we also have additional exposure through eating fish and other animals lower down on the food chain that are also subject to the bioaccumulation of these compounds. It’s also important to note, there are no limits set for what amount of PFAS are safe in drinking water and these compounds are thought to take hundreds or thousands of years to break down in the environment.
Here are some common sources of PFAs in your day to day life:
-water-food containers and wraps
-stain resistant furniture
-carpets and rugs
-water resistant clothing and gear
PFAs have various hormone disrupting effects in the human body. PFAs negatively affect reproductive hormones, vitamin D activity (important for immunity, bone health, etc), fertility, disrupt thyroid hormones (increasing risk of thyroid disease) and a host of other issues. PFAs are also now listed as a possible human carcinogen. Exposure to PFAs has been shown to increase the risk of cancer (specifically leukemia, kidney, thyroid, testicular, prostate and ovarian cancers) and autoimmune disease, alter cholesterol levels, cause weight gain, impact kidney and liver function, cause immune suppression, increased risk of hypersensitivities and ulcerative colitis and can harm a developing fetus by increasing rates of birth defects and cause decreased infant birth weight.
The EWG.org has a great database: https://www.ewg.org/skindeep/ to help investigate personal products like cosmetics for harmful endocrine disrupting chemicals such as PFAs. At Axe Holistic Medicine, we also offer various testing options to look at hormone disrupting chemicals which can play a big role in hormone imbalances, cancer risk, thyroid and liver health, along with many other health concerns.