Deodorant. A common everyday product we all use. Could it actually be doing more harm than good? If you are using an antiperspirant deodorant that contains aluminum your health could be at risk. There is a strong correlation between aluminum and certain health problems. Breast cancer, adynamic bone disease, Alzheimer's disease, and skin irritation are all things that have come up in question.
Aluminum based antiperspirant deodorants hit the market in the early 1900s. Prior to that, people used perfumes to mask body their odor (this dates back to Ancient Egyptians and Greeks). Aluminum antiperspirants were invented to control and stop sweating, a natural and vital action, and to eliminate underarm odor. They work by coating/blocking the sweat glands and thus stopping sweating. When an antiperspirant is applied some of the aluminum ends up getting absorbed into the skin and even more aluminum compounds can be absorbed after shaving because pores are opened up. Sweating is vitally important because it allows the body to expel toxic things such as heavy metals, BPAs, PCBs, and more. It also allows the body to cool down and prevents overheating.
There is a strong correlation between aluminum and certain health effects. Breast cancer is the biggest one that comes up in question since aluminum is a genotoxin and can damage DNA. While there have not been lots of studies done, there are some facts that point to the possibility that aluminum could be contributing to breast cancer. In Britain alone, breast cancer has doubled in the past 25 years and antiperspirants have become more popular in that time. Recently, it was shown that women with breast cancer have twice the level of aluminum in their breasts, compared to women without breast cancer. Most commonly, cancer is detected in the part of the breast closest to the armpit near where deodorant is applied. Aluminum has been shown to mess with estrogen in the body and scientists suggest that this increases your risk of cancer. This doesn't just apply to women. There are cases of breast cancer among men too, although it's not quite as common as women.
Another not so known health issue relates to kidney disease. There are warning labels on antiperspirants that say, "Ask a doctor before use if you have kidney disease." If your kidneys aren't functioning properly, you might want to reconsider using aluminum antiperspirants. When the kidneys are compromised, they can't filter out enough of the aluminum being absorbed and can buildup in the body. Too much buildup, and it can cause a bone disease called adynamic bone disease.
Dating back to 1921, aluminum has also been negatively associated with loss of cognitive memory function. It has been shown to change and impair brain function including emotions, learning, and memory. Back in 1988 in Camelford (Cornwall, UK), aluminum accidentally made its way into the drinking water and over 20,000 residents were exposed to high levels of aluminum. Scientists did a 10 year follow up study and found that the residents had brain impairment symptoms like loss of concentration and short term memory loss. Aluminum may accumulate in the brain over time, leading to a decline in brain function, including Alzheimer's disease.
Aluminum antiperspirant deodorants have also been shown to cause skin irritation, itchy skin, tingling, and other allergic reactions. Treat your body nicely and just use a natural deodorant that doesn't include possible toxins like aluminum. It's just as effective at treating odor and allows your body to naturally sweat.
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