When soap started being marketed as "anti-microbial" it took a turn from being a tool for keeping us healthy by keeping germs away, to being a detriment to our health by creating a sterile environment and antibiotic- resistant bacteria.
In order to be marketed as antimicrobial, heavy duty bacteria-busting chemicals must be added. Sadly these additives, like Triclosan have become common household items, found in soap, toothpaste and deodorant. Triclosan was created over 40 years ago as a disinfectant for hospitals, and its use has become so prevalent in our society that a survey done by the CDC found it present in the urine of over 75% of Americans age 5 and over!
Triclosan has been claimed to be an endocrine disruptor and its use can also eradicate the good bacteria that lives on our skin as well as the bad! This takes a toll on our immune system and unnecessarily creates bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics.
Authors Smith & Lourie warned about Triclosan in "Slow Death by Rubber Duck", as did the CMA in 2009, and now Health Canada is finally taking heed, planning to finalize its risk assesment of the chemical (along with phtalates, flame retardants and others) in the next few years.
In the meantime, I encourage you all to avoid use of anti- microbial soaps, detergents, etc. Read your labels carefully, especially deodorant & toothpaste! Opt for natural, chemical-free products where you can. Sadly this is only one of the toxic ingredients out there, there are many more!
For more information on Triclosan & Anti-Microbial soaps check out the following:
Common toothpaste additive triclosan to be deemed toxic to environment - Environmental Defence bit.ly/H9SAQa
"Should antibacterial soap be outlawed?" -Discovery Health http://bit.ly/H9QLCI
"Triclosan, an Antibacterial Chemical, Raises Safety Issues" - NYTimes.com http://nyti.ms/HMTYwv
"Consumer Antibacterial Soaps: Effective or Just Risky?"- Oxford Journal http://bit.ly/hcJ1hR
"Are Antimicrobial Soaps Breeding Tougher Bugs?"- Washington Post http://wapo.st/HMV37p
Slow Death by Rubber Duck- Rick Smith & Bruce Lourie
Post written by: Alexandra Hurtado, ND
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