(NaturalHealth365) Your liver is a vital organ with hundreds of important functions. For instance, your liver works hard to cleanse your blood of poisons and toxins.
Now, a recent study published in JHEP Reports shows a disturbing link between a synthetic “forever chemical” and deadly liver cancer. The report suggests that the higher the exposure to forever chemicals, the higher the chance of developing liver cancer.
Man-made forever chemicals linked to deadly form of liver cancer
Forever chemicals are synthetic chemicals commonly used in consumer and industrial products. There are many types of these chemicals, known as per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). Perfluooctane sulfate (PFOS) is just one type of PFAS.
For the JHEP study, researchers analyzed human blood and tissue samples previously collected for an epidemiological study. Researchers looked at the samples of people who did or did not develop liver cancer.
They evaluated samples taken before cancer diagnosis, comparing them to samples from those who didn’t develop cancer. Researchers found that study participants with high levels of PFOS in their blood were four and a half times as likely to develop liver cancer.
The participants who developed cancer all had high levels of multiple types of PFAS in their blood. But the strongest link was between PFOS and liver cancer. Although other studies involving animals have suggested correlations between PFAS and cancer, this is the first human study to prove it.
Here is why PFAS are bad news for your health
Forever chemicals earned their nickname because they are extremely long-lasting. They take a long time to break down, accumulating in our environment and our bodily tissues over time. Unfortunately, the use of these dangerous chemicals is still widespread, although some manufacturers have stopped using them altogether amid growing health concerns.
PFAS are present in drinking water, food, food packaging, and even cosmetics. This is bad news for your health. Besides being carcinogenic, PFAS are associated with liver damage, kidney disease, neurological damage, and autoimmune problems. And once these toxic chemicals get into your bloodstream, they’re there for the long haul.
How does PFOS lead to liver cancer?
Researchers speculate that forever chemicals impede natural liver function. For instance, PFOS may interfere with glucose metabolism, bile acid metabolism, and amino acid metabolism. When the liver can’t function normally because of metabolic disruption, fat buildup can occur within the liver. This results in a condition called nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD).
Those with NAFLD have a much higher risk of liver cancer. Shockingly, there has been a global uptick in the number of people diagnosed with NAFLD – with scientists estimating that a whopping 30% of the global population will have NAFLD by the year 2030.
How to minimize intake of PFAS
What can you do to keep your liver healthy and reduce your PFAS exposure? It may be hard to avoid PFAS altogether. But you may be able to minimize exposure by minimizing packaged and processed foods.
Choose organic, whole, or locally grown foods whenever possible. This will ensure you’re avoiding as many harmful chemicals as possible and help you feel your best.
Sources for this article include:
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