Scientists performed a study which was published in the Journal of Applied Toxicology. The researchers took four samples of breast tissue from 40 women who had cancer. They found an interesting result.
After analyzing the tissue, they found parabens in as many as 99 percent of the tissue samples. Even further, the scientists detected at least 5 parabens in 60 percent of the samples. In addition, some patients did experience breast cancer that formed in the armpit area while others did not.
With results such as these, you can see why both scientists and consumers are showing uncertainty. At the same time, this study doesn’t clearly link the parabens as a cause of the breast cancer.
Since the women experienced cancer in several locations, there also was no evidence that cancer resulted from paraben-containing deodorants. However, the results do warrant more research by scientists and health professionals.
What are Parabens?
Essentially, parabens are synthetic ingredients used in many personal care products and even foods. Companies favor them because parabens come with a low cost and act as a preservative that protects against mold and bacterial growth.
Because parabens can be absorbed through the skin, however, these ingredients can easily get into a person’s bloodstream.
The major reason for concern with these common ingredients is that parabens showcase weak estrogen-like qualities. Unbalanced levels of estrogen have shown to play a role in cancer, and parabens themselves may further cancer growth.
In one study, however, scientists actually grew breast cancer cells in a lab. Then, they combined parabens with another chemical to study the cancer’s reaction.
They found that the cancer did indeed grow with the combined effect of parabens and another chemical. While the research does prove that parabens can fuel the growth of cancer under the right conditions, it still does not directly link them as a carcinogen.
In defense, many health experts contend that the level of parabens in food and beauty products is too low to directly cause cancer. Furthermore, the research does not show that paraben-containing deodorants can increase the risk for breast cancer.
So what should you take away from this research? Consider this:
If you have no other concerns about using drugstore deodorant, you do not need to toss out your usual brand. People have been using paraben-containing deodorants for decades with no known damaging health effects.
On the other hand, you could choose to avoid knowingly the products that contains parabens.
While parabens are undergoing some scrutiny lately, studies have not found a direct link to the low levels of parabens in deodorant and breast cancer. In fact, many deodorants have stopped using parabens as an ingredient, reducing the cause for concern anyway. If you still have uncertainties, you can choose more natural deodorants to stay on the safe side.
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