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expert reaction to link between chemical exposure and heart disease

A paper in Archives of Internal Medicine found a link between cardiovascular disease and higher blood levels of a chemical used in manufacture of products such as lubricants, polishes, paper and textile coatings, and food packaging. The Australian Science Media Centre also issued comments.


Professor Peter Weissberg, Medical Director at the British Heart Foundation (BHF), said:

“This observational study showed that people with cardiovascular disease tend to have high levels of PFOA in their blood. This does not mean PFOA causes heart disease.

“We would need to see further research to properly establish whether this is a chance association or if PFOA does carry risks.

“In the meantime, the best way to avoid heart disease is to quit smoking, exercise regularly and eat a balanced diet. The type of food you eat will have a much greater influence on your heart health than the packaging it comes in.”

‘Perfluorooctanoic acid and cardiovascular disease in US adults,’ Shankar et al., Arch Intern Med, 3 September 2012.

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