What beef sticks should you purchase for your little ones’ lunchbox or for snacking at home? Mamavation tested a very popular pasture-raised company, Paleovalley, to see if they had any indications of PFAS “forever chemicals.” You’ve trusted Mamavation to bring you topics like best cookware sans PFAS and nano, best spices without heavy metals, & best ketchup sans PFAS, now join us for the results of sending Paleovalley Pastured Beef Sticks made with grass-fed beef to the lab to test for PFAS “forever chemicals.”
Disclosure: This post was medically reviewed by Sondra Strand, RN, BSN, PHN. This post also contains affiliate links.
PFAS “Forever Chemicals” Are Ubiquitous Inside the Home
PFAS, otherwise known as per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (aka PFCs or perfluorinated chemicals, including PFOA and PFOS) are added to many products we purchase to make them “stain-resistant,” “grease-proof,” and “water-resistant.” In terms of food, it’s not added purposely, but more a product of trace amounts coming from manufacturing chemicals and processes. Here are some of the products you’ll find them in:
- Food packaging: they are used in popcorn bags, pizza boxes, fast food canisters & wrappers, and the flat dish on the bottom of cakes at the grocery store.
- Building Materials: They are also in carpeting, flooring, artificial turf, sealants, & roofing
- Fabrics & Clothing: used on clothing as “stain-proof” and “water-proof” agents & also other fabrics in your home like furniture. Check out our investigation on sports bras and yoga pants!
- Cookware: You can also find them on non-stick pans
- Kitchen Appliances: Some small kitchen appliances coat PFAS on surfaces to keep things from sticking like most air fryers
- Personal Care: You’ll find them in your personal care like some tooth flosses, and cosmetics
- Menstrual Products: You’ll also find them in about 65% of period underwear, according to Mamavation’s own consumer study.
- Mattresses: Even your mattress can contain PFAS chemicals but these types of mattresses do not.
- Indoor Dust: PFAS chemicals stick to dust particles so the more dust you have in your home, the more likely there is PFAS in the air you breathe. Check out our tips on how to clean this up in your home!
Potential Health Effects of PFAS “Forever Chemicals”
PFAS chemicals are incredibly useful giving us stain repellency, grease repellency, and water repellency, however, they are also very problematic to the environment and human health. The biggest problem is their persistence in the environment, meaning they stay around forever, which is why they were dubbed “forever chemicals” by scientists.
According to epidemiologists, no amount of PFAS is safe because it accumulates within the body. Here is the list of health problems (PFAS) perfluorinated chemicals are linked with.
- reduction in immunity
- metabolic diseases like obesity & diabetes
- reduced vaccination response
- cardiovascular disease
- affect the growth, learning, and behavior of infants and older children
- increased risk of allergies & asthma in young children
- lower a woman’s chance of getting pregnant
- increase the chances of miscarriage
- increase cholesterol levels
- low sperm count
- smaller penis size
- increase the risk of cancer like testicular & kidney cancers
Our government believes PFAS is so problematic, that it forced one dairy farmer to euthanize over 4,000 cows that were contaminated with this chemical. If you feel like you’ve been exposed to PFAS, the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, a division of Community Health Investigations has created this fact sheet to use when talking to your doctor.
Results of PFAS Organic Fluorine Marker Testing for Paleo Valley Beef Sticks
In March of 2022, an EPA-certified laboratory conducted tests of Total Fluorine by Combustion Ion Chromatography on Paleovalley Beef Sticks with a detection level of 100 parts per billion (ppb).
Understanding how this works is important. There are over 10,000 different PFAS chemicals in commerce, so it’s not possible to test for each one individually. In fact, tests are only available for close to 100 of these specific chemicals. So instead, we test for fluorine which is the chemical they all have in common. Organic fluorine is a marker test for PFAS “forever chemicals.” This is the same standard the food packaging industry has created to certify what is “compostable.” BPI Industries & Compost Manufacturing Alliance certifies food packaging is compostable in this way. The only difference is they certify at lower than 100 ppm, but this testing is far more sensitive. PFAS chemicals are not a consideration in the organic standards, so this isn’t a problem you can avoid by just buying organic.
Results from Paleovalley:
- Paleovalley Beef Stick made with 100% Grass-Fed Beef: Non-detect (with a detection level of 100 parts per billion)
Special Discount from Paleo Valley:
We reached out to Paleovalley and congratulated them on their testing results and asked about a discount code for Mamavation readers. They offered us two options based on how much you plan on buying. Here are those options:
- 15% discount on everything when clicking on this link here and buying directly from their site. OR
- 80% off your first pack of beef sticks by clicking on this link here and buying directly from their site.
Additional Details on Paleovalley: Paleovalley 100% Grass-Fed Beef Sticks are the only beef sticks in the USA made from 100% grass-fed/grass-finished beef and organic spices that are naturally fermented. Cows are never given antibiotics or steroids. The beef comes from 100% grass-fed cows raised entirely on natural grass pastures by family farmers right here in the USA. As a result, they are healthy and happy. There are also no nitrates added (other than what is naturally occurring in celery juice) and they are gluten-free.
Other Mamavation PFAS Testing Projects
Mamavation has been working hard to discover where to find PFAS “forever chemicals” inside food & other products we purchase and bring inside our homes. This is why we have decided to commission our own consumer studies on indications of PFAS in different consumer categories and share that information with you.
We also have other investigations you may like.
- Best Yoga mats
- Best Organic Mattresses
- Best Air purifiers
- Best Cookware
- Best Plant-Based Milks
- Best Water Filters for PFAS Filtration
- Best Collagen
- Best Electrolyte Replacement Drinks, Sports Drinks, & Coconut Water
- Best Infrared Saunas