Chemical in Non-Stick Pans Encourages Cholestrol

A recent study published in a journal of the American Medical Association revealed that the non-stick cookware and microwavable popcorns contain chemicals that aggravate the risk of high blood cholesterol levels in children.

The study was carried out by a crew of researchers from Stephanie Frisbee of West Virginia University School of Medicine and the findings are based on the analysis of blood lipid levels in 12,476 children and adolescents aging one to 18 years.

The children included in the study were participants of a health project, who were exposed to the contaminated drinking water containing perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), a chemical that is also found in non-stick pans or other non-stick cookware.

The chemicals known as PFOA and PFOS are used in non-stick cookware for heat resistance, in carpets and stain-resistant clothing and also found in packaged food. These chemicals, if consumed transmit to the liver, where the formation of cholesterols and fats takes place.

In the study, it was discovered that the children, who were exposed to tainted water had significant levels of PFOA measuring 69.2 nanograms per milliliter, on an average; while the national average was 3.9ng/ml. The higher the PFOA levels, the higher were the children at risk of developing high total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol.

It was found that around one-fifth of children and teenagers with higher PFOA levels had higher cholesterol levels, as compared to a fifth of the children with the lowest PFOA levels.

Cathy Ross, senior cardiac nurse at the British Heart Foundation, said, "More research is needed to identify whether the small quantities of these chemicals that UK children are exposed to actually affect their cholesterol levels".