For so many women, the morning starts with a shower and the application of a sweet-smelling antiperspirant. Of course you want to smell good when you walk out the door, but is your antiperspirant increasing the odds of you becoming a breast cancer statistic?
Antiperspirants and Deodorants: What’s the Difference?
Deodorants are designed to stop the spread of bacterial growth that cause odor under the arm. In order to do their job, most commercial brands use an antiseptic which relies on the use of preservatives to retain their effectiveness over time. Parabens are one of the most common type of preservative found in deodorants. Parabens can act as Xeno-estrogens─ false estrogens that mimic estrogen-signaling in breast tissue. They have also been proven to cause breast cancer.
Commercial antiperspirants do what their name implies. They are chemically designed to clog pores in the armpit in order to prevent sweat─ and the material they perform this function with is aluminum. The armpit area is dense with sweat glands and lymph nodes that are designed to drain toxins from the breasts. When you clog these pores with aluminum, the added toxins are absorbed into your breast. This toxic overload may lead to physiological changes─ and to breast cancer.
A recent study in the Journal of Applied Toxicology demonstrated that high levels of aluminum were found in women afflicted with breast cancer. The fluid that aspirated from the nipples of these women had high levels of aluminum, a metal that is not found in normal human tissue. According to the study: “The reasons for the high levels of aluminum include either exposure to aluminum-based antiperspirant salts in the adjacent underarm area and/or preferential accumulation of aluminum by breast tissues.”
Aluminum toxicity has been linked to Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia as well as to breast cancer in laboratory studies. The link to breast cancer is largely due to the fact that aluminum also has the potential to act like a Xenoestrogen in the body. Most antiperspirants also contain deodorant antiseptics as well, to eliminate what odors may escape through the pores. And both deodorants and antiperspirants contain heavy doses of chemically-produced fragrance, which, of course, all come with their own cocktails of cancer-causing toxins.
Healthy Alternatives to Commercial Antiperspirants and Deodorants
Don’t despair─ you can still feel (and smell) fresh and be safe at the same time. Nontoxic options are out there, so check your local natural foods store for underarm options that use essential oils, natural, organic butters (like shea), and natural antibacterials like baking soda. You can also employ some healthy “shortcuts” on your own to decrease the amount of sweat and body odor your body produces. Upping your water intake and your intake of foods like celery that have a high water content will lower your body temperature somewhat (thus less sweating). Cutting back on substances like alcohol, caffeine and processed foods will not only freshen the sweat you do produce but will give your digestive system a break. The more your GI tract has to work to process food, the more sweat (and the more pungent odor) your body will produce.
In general, always read the labels on the beauty products you intend to purchase and make sure there are no parabens or other hidden toxic chemicals, especially aluminum, hidden inside. Remember that anything you put ON your skin is absorbed INTO your bloodstream.
A wonderful resource to help you uncover toxins in everyday products is the Environmental Working Group. On this site, you can learn about the health effects of toxic chemicals that are absorbed through the water you drink, the food you eat and products you use every day. Learn how to limit your exposure by making informed decisions about the chemicals that you ingest through your skin and through the environment so you can heal your body naturally.
Dr. Veronique Desaulniers (“Dr. V”) is a best-selling author and founder of breastcancerconqueror.com. She specializes in Chiropractic, Bio-Energetics, Meridian Stress Analysis, Homeopathy and Digital Thermography. After 30 years in active practice, she decided to “retire” and devote her time to sharing her personal, non-toxic Breast Cancer healing journey with others. Her years of experience and research have culminated in “The 7 Essentials™ “, a step-by-step coaching program that unravels the mystery of healing the body. Her website and personal healing journey have touched the lives of thousands of women around the globe.