FDA Finds Toxic Nonstick Compounds in Grocery Store Foods

MONDAY, June 3, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has found high levels of toxic nonstick, stain-resistant compounds in some meats, seafood and even chocolate cake, the Associated Press reported.

High levels of these manmade compounds -- called per- and polyfluoroalykyl substances, or PFAS -- were found in almost half of the meat and fish the agency tested. The levels were two to three times higher than recommended.

In the chocolate cake, levels were more than 250 times higher than the federal guidelines for some PFAS in drinking water, the report found.

Still, FDA spokeswoman Tara Rabin told the AP that the contamination was "not likely to be a human health concern."

Nearly 5,000 types of PFAS, created in 1938 by chemicals giant DuPont exist. They were first used in nonstick cookware. Today they are found in many products including food packaging, carpets, couches and dental floss, and are used to shed grease, water and stains. PFAS are also in firefighting foam.

A federal review last year found that these compounds are more dangerous than thought, and may be linked some cancers, liver problems and low birth weight.

PFAS are called "forever chemicals." It takes thousands of years for them to breakdown, and many of them buildup and stay in your body.

"What this calls for is additional research to determine how widespread this contamination is and how high the levels are," Linda Birnbaum, director of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, told the AP.

"We have to look at total human exposure -- not just what's in the water or what's in the food ... or not just dust. We need to look at the sum totals of what the exposures are," she said.

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