‘Forever chemicals’ on kitchen utensils can increase the risk of liver cancer, study finds – India Today

Health

Researchers at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles have found that exposure to synthetic chemicals, common on several household goods and some kitchen utensils, can increase a person’s risk of getting liver cancer.

The ‘forever chemicals’ that are common on some kitchenware and food packaging may quadruple the risk of cancer, the study warned. The chemicals, according to the Centre of Disease Control and Prevention, are almost everywhere from non-stick kitchen utensils to tap water, waterproof clothing, cleaning products and shampoo.

During the research, as reported by the Daily Mail, it was found that the people who had the most recorded exposure to such chemicals were 4.5 times more likely to develop non-viral hepatocellular carcinoma, a common liver cancer.

“Liver cancer is one of the most serious endpoints in liver disease and this is the first study in humans to show that PFAS are associated with this disease,” Dr Jesse Goodrich, a postdoctoral scholar at the University of Southern California, said in a statement.

Perfluooctane sulfate (PFOS) is a type of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substance (PFAS) and is referred to as ‘forever chemicals’ as they can take years to degrade in the body or environment as well.

Experts fear that the damage may have already been done as these compounds are more dangerous than previously believed.

The researchers studied data of 50 people who developed liver cancer and 50 others who did not. This was followed by an analysis of blood samples from the cancer patients before the diagnosis and compared with the people who never developed the disease. Several types of chemicals were found in the bloodstreams of people who eventually developed cancer.

The higher levels also suggested an increased risk of having cancer.

The researchers also noted that PFOS, when they enter the liver, alter the metabolism and lead to fatty liver disease. People who suffer from the condition are at an increased risk of having liver cancer.

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