Now We Need to Worry About Harmful 'Forever Chemicals' in Our Toilet Paper Too

By Jeffrey Kluger | TIME | March 2, 2023

Read the full article by Jeffrey Kluger (TIME)

"In case you’re counting, the average American will go through 26 kg (57 lbs) of toilet paper in a single year. Multiply that by the 332 million people in the U.S. and you get more than 19 billion pounds of waste paper being flushed away annually. All by itself that represents a massive disposal and sanitation challenge.

But now, according to a paper just published in Environmental Science & Technology Letters there’s even more reason to be concerned: All of that toilet paper, including major brands sold around the world, turn out to be yet another source of PFAS, short for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances. Also known as “forever chemicals,” these ubiquitous manufacturing chemicals have been linked by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to a range of health ills, including, decreased fertility, hypertension in pregnant people, increased risk of certain cancers, developmental delays in children, low birthweight, hormonal irregularities, elevated cholesterol, reduced effectiveness of the immune system—leading to decreased efficacy of vaccines—and more."