The Environmental Protection Agency says that there are thousands of PFAS in many of our household products or their packaging. Although your exposure to PFAS might be low, some people might be more exposed to PFAS if they work in manufacturing or processing plants that produce PFAS. Because PFAS are found in fire extinguishing foam, firefighters might also have higher concentrations of PFAS in their systems.
Because PFAS are so prevalent in our environment, researchers find it difficult to isolate the effects of PFAS on our health. Most of the research focuses on certain PFAS that are better known. What researchers do know is that PFAS can affect fertility in women or cause delays in a child’s development. PFAS have also been linked to certain types of cancers, such as prostate, testicular, and kidney cancers. Researchers also believe that PFAS weaken our immune system and disrupt the hormones in our bodies. Finally, PFAS might also increase cholesterol and the risk of obesity.