Studies have linked PFAS to adverse health effects, including high blood pressure, decreased fertility in women, liver damage, cancer, low birthweight and an increased risk of asthma and thyroid disease. The use of some of the more common PFAS was gradually phased out in the United States between 2000 and 2015. However, other variations of the chemicals have taken their place. The newer PFAS tend to have shorter chains of the carbon-fluorine bond, and are thus more rapidly eliminated from the body. But the FDA says they continue to present a concern for human health.

Research suggests that people who regularly consume microwave popcorn have markedly higher levels of PFAS in their bodies. A study published in 2019 analyzed a decade of data about the eating habits of 10,000 people, which was collected by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention between 2003 and 2014. Blood samples from the study participants were also collected. The researchers found that people who ate microwave popcorn every day over the course of a year had levels of PFAS that were up to 63% higher than average.