Donating blood regularly can reduce toxic forever chemicals in the bloodstream, study shows

  1. To be fair, the levels the epa has set for PFOS and PFOA (PFAS chems) is 70 parts per trillion. So as long as your water doesn’t have above that amount, the EPA has determined it is acceptable. One part per trillion is like one second in 32,000 years. It’s just persistent in your blood, but doesn’t stay there forever.

  2. Not having read the article (shame, I know), I would think that the "forever" part applies to the chemical, not the presence in the blood.

  3. It's on our dental floss because we're lazy to use pressure and it's on our jackets because we're afraid of water. We're soft and we're fucked.

  4. There is a few processes that can happen to the blood you donate before it is received for transfusion. If you're donating whole blood, they will centrifuge it to separate it into its components (red blood cells, platelets, and plasma), and then filter it to leukoreduce the product to prevent any immune reactions in the recipient, as well as add a preservative (SAGM) for storage.

  5. Most blood donated (in the US) is processed and sold in separate components (blood plasma, etc.) to pharmaceutical companies who need it as a raw ingredient to produce certain medications. In this international market, the US is one of the world's most important sources of blood plasma specifically.

  6. I know Prions can get through. That's had me nervous enough when I've gotten transfusions before. (༎ຶ ෴ ༎ຶ)

  7. I don't know how they made the conclusion that donating plasma was more effective than donating blood at reducing PFAS levels, because the plasma group donated twice as often as the blood donating group.

  8. I think it is because you can pass more liquid through with plasma safely. The amount you can donate of Reds is lower than Plasma for safety reasons, so it kinda sounds like the trick here is that the PFAS flow out with the blood, and you make new clean blood on your own, so the more you can stream out the bad stuff by just getting it out of your body. More fluid out means more chemicals out just a matter of how much of that life juice you can spare at a time.

  9. I think it may be that you can donate plasma more often, so they didn't have to control for that difference, as it's basically part of the whole/plasma thing.

  10. Here in Germany you can donate plasma up to 60 times in 12 months. If I have good blood values I can donate every week. But sometimes I can donate after like 2-3 weeks.

  11. "Plasma donations resulted in a more substantial decrease in serum PFAS levels than blood donations, and both treatments were more effective than observation alone. This difference may arise because participants in the plasma group were able to donate every 6 weeks rather than every 12 weeks for whole blood. Each plasma donation can amount to as much as 800 mL compared with 470 mL for whole blood; the increased volume may contribute to the faster reduction in serum PFAS levels found in the plasma donation group. In addition, plasma donation may be more efficient at reducing the body’s burden of PFASs because serum PFAS levels are approximately 2 times higher than blood PFAS levels."

  12. Probably because PFAS is very lipophilic. I'm assuming plasma is more hydrophilic than blood cells. PFAS is going to bind tighter to the blood cells that it would to the plasma. Therefore the cells collect more over time.

  13. I'm O- and really need to start donating blood again to help my other fellow universal donors.

  14. O- blood type donor here! I have donated about two gallons. My clinic started sending me a text when my blood gets used to save a life and that keeps me going! The free tshirts and snacks are nice too, my gf loves when i come home with “blood cakes”.

  15. AB- here.. pretty much nobody can use my blood but I still donate. A bag of AB- used on an AB- person like myself frees up a bag of more valuable blood for someone else.

  16. It’s not too important, a hospital would never give blood based off of someone saying a person has a certain blood type.

  17. There are some conditions where bloodletting is actually a treatment. Specifically, conditions that cause hemochromatosis, also known as iron overload. Too much iron is very toxic to the body, and people with this problem have to "give" blood regularly to keep their iron levels low. The blood may still be donated, too, unless there are other concerns with the donor like infectious disease.

  18. No idea if there's any research on this, but just in terms of blood loss, menstruation is on a whole different scale than blood donation. When you donate I think you typically give a pint. When you have your period, you typically lose 30 - 40 mL of blood. So blood donation is ~13x more blood loss than menstruation.

  19. Menstrual fluid is approx 36-50% blood. So I'm sure it plays a role in removing forever chemicals, just like it has a role in reducing the harmful effects of hemochromatosis.

  20. Not sure about blood, but this has been studied in killer whales and is definitely true of breast milk. I'm on my phone so don't have a reference on hand, but if you search killer whales PCB breast milk you can find it. PCBs are very fat soluble, so they build up in blubber and breast milk, but killer whale moms shed all their built up PCBs so they end up with the lowest measurable levels, while first born males have the highest levels both because they get all their moms' PCBs that were accumulated as they matured, and because they never shed it themselves.

  21. I said it in a comment above, but blood donation is a common treatment for hemochromatosis (iron overload in the body) to remove the excess iron from one's blood. I began a series of blood donations last week to start treating it for myself. I'm a dude.

  22. It should work similarly. Women with hereditary hemochromatosis (toxic buildup of iron) often do not develop symptoms until menstruation stops (whether by medications or age).

  23. Taylor, who is now Victoria’s chief environmental scientist, took up the challenge. He knew that previous studies had shown lower levels of PFAS contamination in people who regularly drew blood for medical purposes and women who menstruated.

  24. I would be curious if the reverse of this were true. Women tend to have low iron, particularly in later years, compared to men - largely due to both reduced meat consumption as well as loss from menstruation. I would be curious if blood transfers from higher content blood would alleviate low iron (or other compounds) in recipients as a potential treatment, and how the efficacy of it would compare vs. traditional supplements.

  25. So basically we need to bring back blood letting. Because if this is true there are people who can't donate blood that could benefit from such things. I guess leeches are technically available over the counter.

  26. Last week I started bloodletting for the first time to treat my iron overload. They called it bloodletting when they first told me I needed to do it, so I'm going to keep calling it that because it sounds cooler.

  27. Like long-term monogamous homosexuals who are apparently still too risky to take blood from, even though other demographics who can donate have higher rates of transmission and diagnosis of HIV

  28. I pop a false positive for T-cell lymphoma virus. Weirdest thing, found out when I was 17 and donated for the first time. So I can't donate because my blood gets flagged. Bring on the leeches!

  29. I just did a double (power) red donation last week that kicked my ass, but put me over the 5 gallon mark. First time in a while that I’ve done more than a regular donation. But good to know something that I do for others might be beneficial to me!

  30. Let's break the situation down. Assume the baseline population has 10ppm forever toxic chemicals and that this is mostly safe. Assume both people who need blood as well as donors have this level.

  31. Oh good. I was concerned this being published by "Swaddle" which I've ever heard of. The author doesn't have a science background and didn't give any sources.

  32. PFAS in the environment and in our bodies are obviously a concern but just a quick reminder that frequently donating blood can greatly increase your risk of anemia so keep up with your iron intake and always consult a doctor before taking on a new health regimen such as bloodletting!

  33. I can't speak for every country, but here in the Netherlands they check your Ferritin levels (and other things) when you donate, so they can check if you have enough iron stored to replenish your blood.

  34. They will test your iron stores before you donate. But yes very important to consult a physician and all the more excuse to have a nice steak after your donation for heme iron.

  35. We really need more blood donation centers. I currently live in Queens NY and there isn't one blood center in the entire county, part of one of the most populous cities in the world.

  36. The red cross actually stopped taking donations in NYC because there wasn't enough turn out in the mobile drives, they also wouldn't buy/rent space for a permanent location because it was "too costly" (I was only a peon at the red cross, but that was the explanation I got when they shut it down)

  37. But that someone else spilled out a bunch of theirs too, usually by accident. Plus the blood they're getting is likely coming from someone who donated regularly so it's probably not as heavy in these forever chemicals. So they're probably coming out ahead, in this metric.

  38. Well that would suck for those of us who can't donate. Should we just start bloodletting instead? Damn you mad cows disease and the fact that I can't donate due to when and where I was born!!!

  39. Yup. Tried to donate, but failed the questionnaire.. Have you shared needles while having unprotected sex in prison… or did you live in England in 1994?

  40. The second one. But they also already have PFAs in their blood, and likely lost blood already, so some blood with PFAs (which are already in the recipient's blood) is preferable to, you know, dying.

  41. That quote "dilution is the solution" is from someone in India about fixing the Ganges River right? I was watching a documentary about it.

  42. I wonder how these plastics influence the medical conditions people have like cancer. What happens if micro plastics make it to the brain?

  43. The fact that HIV-negative gay men in long term monogamous relationships are banned from donating blood is insane to me. Like HIV has a 90-day incubation period so I understand a 90-day abstention period, but afaik it’s still a multi-year ban right?

  44. Let’s be mindful that blood is one of the US top exports and is a billion dollar industry. These studies are paid by said industry

  45. This study in question was not. It was funded by Fire Rescue Victoria, Australia (because the study was done on firefighters because they have high exposures to PFASs in firefighting foams), not by Australia’s National Blood Authority.

  46. In Germany, for a long time only the German Red Cross was allowed to take blood donations. They had the monopoly. They ask people to donate for free, the best you can hope to get from them is some cookies and a cup of coffee. But they themselves make like 120€ from a single donation.

  47. In Northern Europe, many people have a gene mutation that helped them/their ancestors survive famine and possibly disease. This mutation can cause excess iron storage. The blood letting did actually help some people feel better because it removed some excess iron. This is likely one of the reasons that it went on for as long as it did. Doctors could see that it was helping some people, they just didn’t understand the reason why.

  48. Always surprised me that in America people expect to get paid for donating blood/plasma etc. No doubt rooted in the private model of healthcare they have.

  49. Uhm…. Is this going to end up proving that Bloodletting wasn’t as bad an ideas as we thought? Were “toxic forever chemicals” actual “bad humors”? What century did I just wake up in?

  50. It seems that the human body is made to ride close to the edge of survival at all times, and living in safety and security can have a lot of negative effects.

  51. Wait, at the end of the article it says there is no evidence to say that recipients have any harmful effects.. but having them in the first place is dangerous? I smell bs

  52. Ah, we have come full circle back to blood letting. I wonder what this means for technologies like the lobotomy?

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