When using food containers you run the risk of chemical exposure making it important to know what food containers have PFAS in them too.
The last thing you want is to be constantly exposed to a dangerous and harmful chemical like PFAS. This can result in diseases, weakened immune systems, and reproductive health problems in the future. So to avoid this chemical, you need to know where to find it.
Food containers like cardboard takeout containers, pizza boxes, fast food packaging, pet food bags, and microwaveable popcorn bags are all known to have PFAS in them. Avoid these when you can to eliminate your exposure.
PFAS is a chemical that is used in a wide variety of products for manufacturing and industrial purposes. It is also present in food containers, such as some types of food packaging and plastic utensils. It should be avoided and this guide discusses the food containers that have PFAS in them.
The FDA has asked companies to stop using PFAS and also urges consumers to avoid the use of these products until more research is done on the long-term effects of these chemicals on human health. Keep reading to learn more about what we know about them and which containers have PFAS too.
What Food Containers Have PFAS?
PFAS are man-made chemicals that are used in a variety of products, including many take-out style food containers. They can also be found in some food packaging, cookware, clothing, and cosmetic products.
It is important to understand PFAS and that these chemicals can be found in many food containers so you can avoid them. PFAS can cause health issues such as cancer, liver damage, and hormone disruption.
We need to take care of our health and the environment by avoiding PFAS in food containers. This can be done by checking for chemicals on the packaging or contacting the manufacturer for more information about the product.
They have been linked to cancer, thyroid disease, high cholesterol, reproductive issues, and more. You should also make sure you store your food properly so it does not come into contact with the chemicals.
To avoid them, you can consider the following food containers below to keep these chemicals out of your home to stay healthier.
Cardboard Takeout Containers
The use of PFAS in food packaging has been on the rise for decades because of its durability and stability. It is used to make many different products that are used quite often in the food and packaging industries.
The most common food container that contains PFAS is the cardboard takeout container. Unfortunately, this type of container is used at nearly every restaurant you have ever been to and it is quite difficult to avoid.
Because of this, the difficult reality is that nearly all adults have PFAS in their bodies at some capacity. It is estimated that 98% of people have some level of PFAS in their bodies. But this does not mean that we should accept exposure because it can get worse over time too.
Companies like Chipotle that use cardboard containers have started to make it a point to use PFAS-free products. This is an attempt to start serving healthier products to customers by putting a focus on health first.
Fast Food Packaging
PFAS is a group of chemicals that are used in the manufacturing of non-stick cookware and food packaging. It has been found in the highest levels in fast food packaging because of how greasy the food tends to be.
The problem with PFAS is that it accumulates in our bodies over time and has been found to cause cancer and thyroid disease. There are also concerns about its impact on our environment too.
After a test was conducted, it was found that brands like Burger King, Chick-Fil-A, and Arby’s all use extremely high amounts of PFAS in their food wrappers and packaging. It has also been found that it is possible to use packaging without PFAS in them, but these restaurants have struggled to make the change.
It will take time but some companies have started to use PFAS-free packaging materials as an alternative to ensure safety for consumers and employees alike. The long-term change could greatly reduce the overall PFAS exposure in the world too.
Many pizza boxes are known to have high levels of PFAS. The chemicals are found in the packaging material, which is why people need to know how to remove them from their food.
This is another type of food container that is known to have higher levels of PFAS than usual. This can be a concern for people who want to avoid these chemicals in their diet, especially if they are pregnant or breastfeeding.
They can be difficult to clean because they are made out of cardboard and plastic, which makes them harder to clean than other types of food containers. Because they contain PFAS in the actual material, the only way to avoid exposure is not to use the boxes.
Due to this discovery, pizza companies and customers need to take precautionary measures so they can be protected from these harmful chemicals.
Pet Food Bags
While it's not yet known how much PFAS is in these bags, it's thought that they could be hazardous to your health. And they contain many more chemicals beyond just PFAS that should be avoided too.
Pet food bags have PFAS and this is why when you buy their food you should move it into a reusable container that is safe. This is because PFAS can be toxic to humans and pets when ingested.
It is recommended that people who are concerned about the health of their pets should move their food into a reusable container that is safe for them. There was a test performed to learn about pet exposure to these chemicals too.
The results indicated that pets have been exposed to 15 different PFAS that pose a long-term risk to health. We need to take similar precautions with our pets by using only safe containers to hold their food.
Microwave Popcorn Bags
Microwave popcorn bags are one food container known to have some of the highest levels of PFAS in them. The study suggests that these levels may be harmful to human health with consistent exposure too.
This has raised concern as to whether the chemical harms human health. These bags contain chemicals that can be harmful to human health, and consumers need to be aware of this when purchasing these products.
Because popcorn gets extremely greasy, PFAS are used in high amounts in their bags because they are known to be most effective in these package types. But with the added PFAS level comes more health risks.
This is because the bags are made of non-stick materials that contain perfluorinated compounds. The study also found that these chemicals can be transferred to your hands and food when you open them.
What Are The Risks Of Exposure to PFAS?
PFAS are a class of manufactured chemicals that have been in use for decades in specific products. They are used to make things like non-stick cookware, stain-resistant fabrics, and much more.
The concern with the exposure to PFAS is the risk this can carry for those people. Exposure will increase your risk of some diseases, damage your reproductive health, weaken your immune system, and stunt the growth of children.
You should consider these risks when buying products that might include PFAS. This is something that should be taken seriously to avoid this chemical in any products you use.
Increased Risk Of Disease
PFAS is used in the manufacturing of many products in the food packaging industry. They have been used for decades to make these products more durable and less likely to degrade but they present risks.
When it comes to PFAS exposure over time, studies have found that the risk of developing the disease increases with each additional year of exposure. Because of this, minimizing our risk and exposure should be a top priority.
Reproductive Health Problems
PFAS chemicals are also linked to reproductive complications like low birth weight and infertility in women who were exposed during pregnancy or early childhood. This is one of the most concerning risks of all too.
They are present in the blood of pregnant women and their fetuses at levels that are not safe for human health. They have also been linked to a range of health problems, including thyroid disease and cancer.
The use of PFAS has been linked with reproductive complications in both men and women by studies done on people who were exposed to the chemicals through drinking water or packaging. The effects of this exposure range from infertility and early menopause in women to testicular cancer in men too.
Weakened Immune System
PFAS exposure has been linked with a weakened immune system in people with excessively high levels of exposure. This is because PFAS compounds have been shown to interfere with the body's ability to produce antibodies that fight off infection.
People who had higher levels of PFAS in their blood were more likely to suffer from autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis. By eliminating exposure, your immune system can remain stronger.
Developmental Issues With Children
Many developmental issues can arise from exposure to this PFAS. Children may experience learning difficulties, behavioral issues, and hyperactivity. They may also be more likely to develop asthma or other respiratory problems.
Children are more likely to suffer from issues such as behavioral problems and learning disabilities when they are exposed to PFAS. It is beneficial to avoid products known to use this chemical, especially for younger kids.
Can You Wash Out PFAS In Food Containers?
PFAS have been shown to have adverse effects on human health, so it is important to know if you can wash them out of your food containers. But because of the way containers are made, they cannot be removed from food containers and packaging.
Many studies suggest that PFAS can be extremely harmful to human health. This has led to the widespread use of water treatment methods to remove these chemicals from drinking water. It can be removed from water by using a filter or distillation process.
When it comes to containers though, the only way to avoid this chemical is to avoid contact with the dangerous containers in general. This can be done by avoiding greasy foods packaging that typically contains PFAS.
What Food Containers Are Safe?
There are certain food containers that are safe for use in the kitchen and others that should not be used. It is important to know what type of containers to use when preparing and storing food.
Plastic and glass food containers are safe from PFAS. Reusable containers do not use this harmful chemical so when you are storing food at home you shouldn't need to worry about it leaching into your food.
However, plastic containers can sometimes still be dangerous and contain other harmful chemicals if you are not careful. For this reason, the safest option you can rely on is a reusable glass food storage container.
How Can You Avoid PFAS?
PFAS has been linked to cancer and other health risks such as thyroid disease, infertility, and low birth weight. For these reasons, you should consider taking every reasonable precaution to avoid consistent exposure to them.
Consider the following three tips to improve your health and avoid harmful PFAS in your daily routines.
Bring Your Own Takeout Containers
You can avoid PFAS by bringing your plastic and glass reusable containers for takeout with you. Some may not think this is reasonable, but it is the safest way to avoid any harmful containers a restaurant may give you.
By bringing your own containers, you are in control of the materials you come in contact with too. This way you can be sure that all of the products you buy are safe and do not contain any harmful chemical types.
Always Read The Labels
With the use of PFAS chemicals in food packaging, it is important to be conscious of what we are coming in contact with. The use of harmful chemicals in food packaging has been a growing concern.
More and more people are becoming aware of the issue and are taking steps to avoid them. You should always read the labels when possible on food containers. You can check if they use harmful chemicals like PFAS in their materials.
Eliminate Greasy Takeout Foods From Your Diet
PFAS, or perfluorinated compounds, are a group of chemicals that have been used in the manufacturing of many products. They are found in various types of food packaging and can leach into food.
The use of PFAS has been controversial because they have been linked to health problems such as cancer and thyroid disease. In response, some companies have begun to remove PFAS from their packaging materials.
If you eliminate greasy foods from your diet, you will likely come in contact with fewer PFAS that are used in the packaging because they are typically found on the outside of packaging materials.
Will PFAS Ever Be Banned Forever From Food Containers?
It doesn’t seem like PFAS will ever be banned from food packaging at once, but there are many ways that we can reduce our exposure to these chemicals. We can start by buying products with minimal or no PFAS content and avoid using certain items that contain these chemicals.
Some regions are making it a point to crack down on these chemicals. For example, Gavin Newsome has signed a bill that will restrict the presence of PFAS in food packaging of any kind beginning in 2023.
This type of law is groundbreaking to improve the health of people using these products and it is a positive step in the right direction. This bill also requires full disclosure of any chemicals that are present in food packaging for consumers to read.
About THE AUTHOR
I have over a decade of experience in food and beverage management, including a ServSafe food safety qualification. As part of this qualification, I have been professionally trained in safe food storage.Read More About Mark Walker