Numerous studies around the world are showing that exposure to toxic chemicals in personal hygiene products, such as antiperspirants, may be related to allergic reactions and even breast cancer. Given that most deodorants are made up of aluminium chlorohydrate as well as other toxic chemicals, this may come as no surprise. Additionally some contain parabens, the toxicity of which is currently under the microscope.
However, as with many health issues, the theories presented are disputed, but for many people it is incomprehensible that organizations like the American Cancer Society and the National Cancer Institute might be wrong or misleading, thus perhaps it is a healthier option to carry out our own research into who is right or wrong. We may not be doctors, but all of us have more common sense than most. So given that there is much on the internet that is readily available and I am sure that you will be able to find the university papers that have been written about the link between the petro-chemicals and toxins found in breast cancer tumours, with the same nasty ingredients being found in the antiperspirants and deodorants that many of us use on a daily basis.
What do scientists know about the ingredients in antiperspirants and deodorants?
Aluminium and other stuffs known as aluminium salts are to be found in many products, and allowing that every square inch of our skin is like a thousand open mouths, much of what we put onto our skin is readily absorbed by it. This is especially so for women who shave their under-arms (axilla) where the protective surface layers are virtually scraped away during the shaving process. Aluminium absorbed by our bodies is known to have the ability to damage and alter the DNA, thereby causing mutations, which can result in cancer, (this being known as being genotoxic). Additionally I have read some studies that show a proportionately high incidence of breast cancer in the upper outer quadrant of the breast – near to where women shave and apply anti-perspirants.
I don’t want to make the alarm-bells ring here, as it is certain that more research is required to define just exactly why and if the use of commercial deodorants and antiperspirants cause the build-up of parabens and aluminium-based compounds in breast tissue. But the facts are that these compounds are used as the active ingredients to block the sweat glands. As sweat glands are an important means of excreting nitrogenous waste and at the same time helping control body temperature, it would seem to me that there is absolutely no sense at all in blocking the pores and stopping what nature intended. This fact is reinforced when we understand that the evaporation of sweat has a cooling effect on the body, while an increase in temperature causes an increase in sweating. By blocking the pores you enter a vicious circle.
Given that this leaves us uncertain as to who may be telling the truth, we have to ask – are the drug companies trying to fool us – or indeed are the universities carrying out the research making mistakes? But, given that there are too many un-answered questions we would have to say – why take the risk?
Moss-Grove Natural Deodorant
In December 2008, we requested Professor Kofi Aidoo of Glasgow Caledonian Food Research Laboratory to examine our natural deodorant. We explained to him that we had developed a range of natural products using essential oils as the principal active ingredient.
There are numerous toxic chemical compounds present in todays cosmetic products and the aim of the project was to evaluate and test the Moss-Grove formulation for any chemical constituents including heavy metals such as aluminium & lead, chlorine and sulphites.
The tests have shown that Moss-Grove deodorant contained little or no parabens or petrochemicals as shown by the cytotoxicity tests. It also showed relatively low levels of cell death and therefore is likely to be less toxic to living cells which means it won’t cause you any harm. The Moss-Grove deodorant formulation also exhibited a better degree of antibacterial properties compared to the other test formulations that were examined.
Image credits: Ignacio Leonardi