- Health Solutions
- Diet & Nutrition
- Skin Care
- Healthy Living
You are hereHome › Can Cosmetics Cause Cancer?
Can Cosmetics Cause Cancer?
Can Cosmetics Cause Cancer?
Previous research has shown that parabens, which are chemical preservatives found in a wide variety of cosmetics and body care products, have estrogen-like properties. Scientists have long known that estrogen is one of the hormones that can contribute to the development of breast cancer. Now, researchers have discovered a direct link between parabens and breast cancer: A March 2012 study featured in the Journal of Applied Toxicology reveals the presence of parabens in 99 percent of breast cancer tissues sampled.
If that weren’t alarming enough, a study published in the March 15, 2012 issue of Cancer Research showed that women whose diets are high in cadmium have a 21 percent greater chance of developing breast cancer. Cadmium is heavy metal that can bind to estrogen receptors and mimic the hormone. It has long been known to be carcinogenic.
A 2010 study that appeared in the Journal of Chemical and Pharmaceutical Research found that cadmium is prevalent in soap, shampoo, face cream, shaving cream and talcum powder. In addition, the Canadian advocacy group Environmental Defence found cadmium in 51 percent of makeup products it tested in 2011. This included popular items like Clinique foundation, L’Oreal mascara and Almay eye shadow.
These findings are important because the skin is the largest organ in your body, and it absorbs everything you put onto it—even products you rinse off, like soap and shampoo.
So how can you protect yourself? First of all, do not be misled by the words all natural. There are no laws governing the use of this designation and it does not necessarily mean there are no chemical additives in that product. That said, many manufacturers of natural and organic personal care products have phased parabens out of everything from deodorant to shampoo. However, conventional manufacturers have been slower to follow suit.
Consequently, the best way to ensure your body care products don’t contain parabens is to read the labels. The main sources are methylparaben, ethylparaben, propylparaben, butylparaben and isobutylparaben.
Cadmium may not always be listed on a label; one good way to check if your product contains it is to consult the Environmental Working Group’s body-care product database.
Dr. Gahles is a Doctor of Chiropractic (DC) in family practice for over 30 years in NY and NJ. She is a Certified Classical Homeopath (CCH) and President Emeritus of the National Center for Homeopathy. She is a member of the Board of Directors of the Integrative Healthcare Policy Consortium, where she also serves as Chair of the Federal Policy Committee. She is a member of the healthcare working group of the American Sustainable Business Council. She is an Ordained Interfaith Minister and a member of the Advisory Board for the Integrative Healthcare Symposium. Through her writing, lecturing, teaching, practicing, mentoring and advocating, Dr. Gahles is an internationally recognized expert in the field of integrative healthcare. For more information visit www.drnancygahles.com.
June 12th, 2012