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Chemical In Non-Stick Cookware Causes Concern

Feb 27, 2005 | A chemical used in the making of non-stick cookware and many other household products could be making you sick, according to a Local 6 News investigation.

Teflon keeps food from sticking to pots and pans, helps keep clothing stain-resistant and is used in making carpets and furniture.

However, chemicals used to make Teflon are also turning up in people, according to the report.

"It's in the blood of children, it's in the blood of almost 3,000 people tested now," Environmental Working Group spokeswoman Jane Hooligan said. "When Teflon is heated, it begins to break down and it can release toxic gasses and toxic particles."

The Environmental Working Group says the toxic particles can make people sick.

"We're talking about chills, backache, headache, temperature that can last for several days," Hooligan said.

However, FIU chemist Dr. Albert Sabucedo says it's hard to tie the common symptoms.

"You would really have to be right over the pan and it would have to give off particles and you would have to absorb them in your system," Sabucedo said.

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