Freshwater fish contains alarming levels of a cancer-causing chemical, new study finds

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freshwater-fish(NaturalHealth365)  In December 2022, we reported about 116 scientists accusing the World Health Organization (WHO) of ignoring PFAS chemical risks to human health.  These forever chemicals present harmful risks to health and are found in many everyday products, including school uniforms.  PFAS exposure has been linked to liver damage, increased risk of asthma, cancer, increased risk of thyroid disease, and decreased fertility.

Some studies are now asserting that the risks associated with PFAS exposure that the CDC and EPA claim are likely underestimated – grossly understated.  The risks are actually much greater.  A new study has made a shocking discovery that may prompt you to reconsider ever eating freshwater fish again.

A single serving of freshwater fish a year could be equal to a month of drinking water contaminated with high levels of the “forever chemical” PFOS

The study, conducted by scientists with the Environmental Working Group, found that consuming just one serving of freshwater fish a year could be the same as a month of drinking water that contains PFOS, another forever chemical at high, harmful levels.  For Americans, this is very alarming since, in the US, the primary source of PFAS exposure is believed to be diet.

The scientists found that freshwater fish contained 280 times more PFAS than the forever chemicals that are found in some fish that are caught and sold commercially.  This means that people who fish regularly and eat what they catch are running the risk of exposing their bodies to very high, dangerous levels of PFAS.

In the study, the highest concentration of forever chemical found in freshwater fish was PFOS.  This was once used as an ingredient in Scotchgard, manufactured by 3M.  What is more alarming is that the current, most common methods of disposal for products containing PFAS are very likely to be exacerbating the issue and increasing environmental pollution.

Common types of freshwater fish

Freshwater fish live in freshwater all or some of their lives.  You can find them in lakes and rivers where the water has a salinity that is less than 1.05%.

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Common freshwater fish that find their way to our tables include:

  • Catfish
  • Salmon (salmon are one of few species that are both freshwater and saltwater fish)
  • Trout
  • Striped Bass
  • Largemouth Bass
  • Pike
  • Walleye
  • Crappie

Many of these are very popular in restaurants and in homes.  These are all very popular fish to catch and are favorites for dinners and family get-togethers.  In other words, if someone sits down to eat one of these freshwater fish, it isn’t likely that they will have just one or two 4-ounce portions, but much more.  And when these fish contain high levels of harmful PFAS, that means human exposure is incredibly high.

The most disturbing part of this is that it is very difficult to escape.  These forever chemicals are in so many of the items that we use every day.  They are in our drinking water and in our food.  While taking some steps to avoid them, like choosing an organic diet (and even that isn’t 100% free from contamination) and avoiding freshwater fish may help, what is really needed is strong voices to push agencies like the EPA into regulating PFAS more effectively and finding ways to reduce them in our environment.

Sources for this article include:

ActivistPost.com
ScienceDirect.com
EWG.org
HSPH.Harvard.edu

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