Perfluorochemicals are used to make various products resistant to oil, stains, grease, and water.
- Perfluorochemicals (PFCs) is part of the group of Perfluoroalkyl and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFASs) . Click here to learn more about this group of chemicals.
PFCs are found in
- Some foods, such as some red meat and packaged snacks like potato chips. It is not yet known which foods might regularly contain PFCs.
- Certain grease-repellent paper food containers, such as some microwave popcorn bags, take-out boxes, or fast-food wrappers.
- Stain-resistant carpets and some carpet cleaning solutions.
- Stain-, water-, and wrinkle-resistant fabrics and some stain- and water-repellent sprays.
- Most non-stick cookware.
Possible health concerns of PFCs
Scientists are still studying how PFCs might affect people’s health. There is concern that some PFCs:
- May affect the developing fetus and child, including possible changes in growth, learning, and behavior.
- May decrease fertility and interfere with the body's natural hormones.
- May affect the immune system.
- May increase cancer risk.
Possible ways to reduce exposure to PFCs
Scientists are not sure how best to reduce exposure to PFCs. However, you can:
- Limit how often you eat foods from grease-repellent paper containers.
- Avoid buying stain-resistant carpets.
- Avoid buying products labeled stain-resistant, water-resistant, or wrinkle-free, such as some fabrics, furniture, or clothes.
- Avoid using sprays and carpet cleaning solutions that contain PFCs.
- Because PFCs can come out of products and collect in dust, wash your hands often, especially before eating and preparing food, clean your floors regularly, and use a damp cloth to dust.