You May as Well Drink Toxic Water If You Eat Freshwater Fish

Chisom Ndianefo
Salmon
Shutterstock | 917564

Gather here, sushi and salmon lovers; a new discovery has revealed that eating your favorite specie of freshwater fish may have you battling cancer in no time! This claim isn't cooked up, and we're for real, but we'll tell you all about the Environmental Working Group researchers' findings.

Keep reading for the details.

A New Discovery

Researchers from the Environmental Working Group (EWG) have revealed to the public that eating just one freshwater fish in 365 days (a year) is no different from drinking water laced with "forever chemicals" for a month.

The Substances Found

The team found Perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl, also known as PFAS, and widely used by people as cancer-carrying substances, amongst other serious health issues consuming it may cause.

Gathering Samples

Fish
Unsplash | Patrick Boucher

The researchers from this group have gathered and analyzed about 500 samples of locally caught freshwater fishes and fish fillets from freshwaters across the United States.

The Findings

Scientists
Giphy |

The experts calculated that consuming the contaminated fish is equal to drinking water with a PFAS concentration of 48 parts per trillion for a month.

Total PFAs In The Fish

The median amount of all the PFAS in one freshwater fish was estimated to be around 9,500 nanograms per kilogram.

Different Figures For Those Caught In Some Lakes

Salmon
Unsplash | Abstral Official

However, this isn't the case for fish caught in the Lakes of Superior, Michigan, Huron, Erie, and Ontario, as the amount of PFAS has increased to 11,800 nanograms per kilogram.

Commercially Caught Fishes Are Now Safer

This figure is 280 times higher than the amount recorded for commercially caught and sold fish. The research revealed that one would have to buy and consume fish from a local supermarket for a year to get the equivalent level of PFAS people gather from eating just one freshwater fish.

A Penny For Dr David Andrews' Thoughts

Scientists
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A Senior EWG scientist and author, Dr. David Andrews, stated that people who consume freshwater fish, especially the faction who prefers to catch and eat them regularly, are at the highest risk of getting disturbing levels of PFAS in their systems.

The Amount of PFAS In Circulation

Chemicals
Unsplash | Fulvio Ciccolo

As it stands, there're about 12,000 PFAS in circulation which are used by people in homes as firefighting foams, non-stick coating on cooking utensils, and textiles.

The Introduction

Scientists
Unsplash | CDC

The chemicals were first developed by scientists in the 1940s; and since then, various groundbreaking tests and discoveries have traced the origin of numerous health problems to the consumption and use of synthetic chemicals.

Still In Use

However, despite the claims by scientists and many manufacturers stopping their use, they're still detected in human bodies and in large amounts too.

Wondering Why?

Atoms
Unsplash | Terry Vlisidis

The reason for their strange longevity is that they contain an unbreakable bond formed by the carbon and fluorine atoms in them.

An Urgent Mission

Dr. Tasha Stoiber who's also a senior scientist with EW and a co-author has described the need to identify sources of PFAS exposure as an urgent public health priority.

"The EPA needs to move swiftly to set regulations for the industries most likely to be dumping PFAS into the environment."

What Are PFAS

Pots and Pans
Unsplash | Annie Spratt

They're manufactured chemicals used as oil and water repellants and coating for common house products. They don't break down when released into the environment, which causes them to accumulate over time and contaminate drinking water supplies near facilities where they're used.