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Common Household Chemical Dangerous for Heart Health?

A common household chemical has been deemed dangerous for your heart health; and it is more common than you think. According to researchers, slight traces of PFOA, also known as perfluorooctanoic acid, can be found in the bloodstream of 98% of Americans. 

The next time you reach for that non-stick frying pan that you swear by, you may want to think again. That’s because nonstick cookware is just one of the many products that we come into contact with on a regular basis that contain PFOA—a chemical that has been linked to unhealthy cholesterol levels and risk factors for heart disease. Other products include carpets, paint and some food packaging.

Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States and much more prevalent in women than in men. There are several risk factors for developing heart disease such as weight, diet and family history though new studies show that a minimal exposure to PFOA can prove hazardous for heart health.

A study conducted by Anoop Shankar, published in the Archives of Internal Medicine, underlines a clear link from the chemical prominent in many household products to increased risk for cardiovascular disease. Shankar reviewed data collected from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey of 1,200 men and women in their mid 50’s and what he found was astonishing.

Each individual surveyed was asked to give a brief history of their heart health; whether they had prior complications such as stroke, heart attack, heart disease, or peripheral artery disease. As cardiovascular disease increase, so did the levels of PFOA in the bloodstream.

At first glance, this study seems to show a direct cause and effect of PFOA and heart related ailments. Taking a closer look at the possibilities, Shankar discovered that heart disease could in fact be the driving cause for increased PFOA levels.

“People with heart failure have poor kidney function; it is possible [these findings are] due to retaining more PFOAs in those with severe heart disease. It is also possible that the association we are observing is due to a third, yet unknown, unmeasured factor,” he says.

If you are worried about your heart health and would like to find a heart doctor near you, contact the Long Island Heart Associates today to request a consultation.

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