Clean Water Action suggests 10 things you can do to reduce your exposure:
- Ditch your non-stick cookware even if it says PFOA or PFAS free. Replace it with stainless steel or cast iron.
- If you are not able to replace your cookware, then reduce the heat. Do not preheat non-stick cookware and do not use it in the oven at 400 degrees or more. Also avoid using steel wool to clean the non-stick cookware.
- Opt for popping your own corn instead of microwave popcorn. You can do this while not losing the convenience of the microwave by simply putting popcorn kernels in a paper bag or covered bowl.
- Bring your own container for to-go food when eating out instead of asking the restaurant for a potentially PFAS-coated food container.
- Check to be sure your dental floss is PFAS free. You may have to do a little Google research before you shop, but products to avoid include CVS Health EaseBetween SuperSlip Dental Floss Waxed, Oral-B Glide Pro-Health Mint and Glide Pro-Health Original, Crest Glide Deep Clean Cool Mint Floss, and Colgate Total Dental Floss Mint.
- Ask for untreated carpet next time you update the flooring in your house. The options are limited, and you may ultimately be unable to avoid treated carpet, but inquiries for an ideal product may help signal that there is a market demand for untreated options.
- Avoid stain resistant coatings as well, including on your furniture. This may mean you have to use extra elbow grease if you happen to spill something or you may opt for darker colored furniture to help camouflage small everyday stains.
- Read the label on your household products and products and cosmetics, varnishes, and household items that have PTFE or “perfluor-”, “polyfluor-“, and “PTFE” in the ingredient list.
- Look for non-PFAS clothing and avoid sports gear that contain Scotchgard and GORE-TEX. Yes, these products are convenient when staying warm and dry during outdoor adventures, but many companies are trying to reformulate their products to be PFAS free.
- Support your local grassroots organizations that are working to promote regulation of PFAS in drinking water and to eliminate their use in consumer products.
Want to take action beyond your own personal and household choices? Consider volunteering for an organization that is working to promote change. You can also track state and federal legislation that proposes PFAS regulations, then contact your senator and representative to voice your support.
But, most importantly, check the list of consumer products and identify additional items that you can eliminate from your daily life. Possibly your profession or lifestyle prevent you from eliminating every single source of PFAS, but any reduction in exposure is worth the effort. Love those chemically treated no-iron shirts? Consider: friends and family would rather have you cancer-free than wrinkle-free.