Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Please, use sunscreen to get cancer...

It seems like chemical sunscreens are a toxic brew of reproductive toxins and cancer causing chemicals...They say, "put on sunscreen to protect against skin cancer," but some new studies are suggesting that perhaps sunscreens are causing cancer.

Looking through all the sunscreen choices at the store, I've noticed that currently, most formulations contain one or more of the following active ingredients: oxybenzone and avobenzone (bad because they generate free radicals when exposed to UV radiation); cinnamates (often listed as "cinoxate," as if the abbreviation will make it seem less scary); salicylates (often listed as "homosalate" or "octisalate"); titanium dioxide and zinc oxide (physical barrier, but possibly bad because they're often nano-sized). Apparently, one of the non-active ingredients that is commonly added to sunscreens is an anti-oxidant called retinyl palmitate, a derivative of vitamin A, which presumably is supposed to help prevent skin damage from the sun. However, this compound may also be "photocarcinogenic," as it breaks down upon exposure to UV radiation to form compounds that have been shown to accelerate cancer in lab animals. There's no evidence as to what it does in humans, but it might be a good idea to be cautious.

I still haven't found a sunscreen that I like. I don't spend that much time in the sun anyway, but if I know I'll be in the sun long enough to get sunburned, then sure, I'll apply some sunscreen. Otherwise, I'll take my chances and get some vitamin D from a little sun exposure. When needed, I use California Baby's no fragrance sunscreen on my toddler. It's the best I can find so far, but I'm still a little concerned about the whole nanoparticle issue with titanium dioxide and zinc oxide formulations.

No comments:

Post a Comment