Health ALERT – Plant-Based Straws Linked to Hidden DANGERS?

( – Scientists have warned that paper straws, often used as an environmentally friendly alternative to plastic drinking straws, contain potentially dangerous “forever chemicals” that can build up in the body over time. These chemicals are called perfluorinated and polyfluorinated substances (PFAS) and have been linked to a number of health issues, including liver damage, kidney cancer, and thyroid disease. Not only can these chemicals cause damage to people, but they also take thousands of years to break down, meaning they also pose a potential risk to wildlife and the environment, despite their environmentally friendly image.

A recent study published in the journal Food Additives and Contaminants detected the presence of PFAS in most of the straws examined by scientists. The study looked at straws made from five materials: plastic, steel, bamboo, paper, and glass. All materials except steel tested positive for the chemicals, but bamboo and paper straws were found to contain the highest concentration of PFAS.

PFAS are chemicals used in a variety of applications, including non-stick cooking pans and water-proof clothing, as they have a water-repellent effect. It is this effect that makes them so useful for drinking straws, particularly those using paper or bamboo, as these materials can be more prone to water damage.

This study is the first of its kind in Europe, and research into the issue is limited as yet. For example, the study did not look into whether or not the PFAS chemicals leaked into the liquid that the straw was placed in, only whether the straws could be shown to contain the potentially dangerous chemicals.

The Belgian research team behind the study advised that the risk to public health should be low, as the use of drinking straws tends to be limited. However, Dr. Thimo Groffen, a member of the research team, has advised consumers to avoid using drinking straws where possible in light of the findings. He added that steel straws would otherwise be the best alternative, as steel was the only material not found to contain PFAS in the investigation.

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