Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Is the sunscreen you use putting your health at risk?

In their 2014 guide to safe sunscreens. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) reviewed over 2000 sunscreens and over 257 brands and found that more than 75% of the sunscreens contained toxic chemicals.  Chemicals that increase your risk of cancer and potentially lead to other health issues such as skin irritation and allergic reactions.

The following is a list of some of the unsafe, toxic chemicals found in sunscreen that you’ll want to watch out for: 
para amino benzoic acid; octyl salicyclate; oxybenzone; cinoxate; dioxybenzone; phenylbenzimidazole; homosalate; menthyl anthranilate; octocrylene; methoxycinnamate; retinyl palmitate and parabens.

Oxybenzone is the most common ingredient found in sunscreens.  Oxybenzone has been linked to hormone disruptions and cell damage that may incite cancer.  Many sunscreens also contain retinyl palmitate (a form of Vitamin A) which scientists suspect may speed the development of skin tumors and lesions when applied to the skin in the presence of sunlight.

There are two types of sunscreens: mineral and non-mineral.  Non-mineral are the kind that penetrate the skin, and may potentially cause hormone disruption and result in an allergic reaction.  Mineral sunscreens contain zinc and titanium and are usually not absorbed - so they don't disrupt your body's hormones.  Plus they are not allergenic.

Another way to go is to make your own.  Simply take 2 tablespoons of coconut oil, 4 ounces of organic all natural hand lotion and two table spoons of zinc oxide; mix them all up together in a bowl and you've got a non-toxic sunscreen solution.

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