What the accumulation of chemicals in our bodies can do to our health, not just in the short-term but in the long-term too –
PBDEs were banned in Europe by 2008 and voluntarily withdrawn by industry in North America by 2013. It is likely that PBDEs’ production ceased all over the world, although data are missing for many regions. However these chemicals are still present in products used in U.S. households and cars. PBDEs are very stable compounds. Once released into the environment, they accumulate in sediments and in fatty tissues of wildlife and humans and stay there for many years. For example, the half-life of different PBDEs in the human body is between one and seven years. In the environment they found their way to fatty tissues of animals, many of which represent important sources of food for us.
Although production of PBDEs has ceased in developed countries, some studies report that concentrations of PBDEs in human tissues in the U.S. continue to grow.People born in the U.S. and Canada during the last 15 to 20 years were exposed during their early life to environmental concentrations of PBDE, comparable to those that reprogrammed lipid metabolism in our experiments with mice. Thus, we believe that about 20 percent of the North American population may be at risk of conditions associated with altered lipid concentrations in blood and liver.