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Cosmetics Ingredient to Avoid: Parabens

Cosmetics Ingredient Alert: Parabens


While the FDA claims parabens are safe, this chemical preservative is still quite controversial. Used in shampoos, moisturizers, and even toothpaste, parabens are considered hormonally disruptive by many environmental-health scientists. This chemical is known as a weak estrogen mimic and has been found in trace amounts in biopsied breast cancer tumors. There are many alternative cosmetics preservatives, and two are derived from a couple of my favorite substances: sugar and milk. Enzymes from these two popular foods absorb oxygen in order to prevent bacterial growth. Look for the sugar enzyme glucose oxidase or the milk enzyme lactoperoxsidase on the ingredient list of your face wash, conditioner, and moisturizer. Burt's Bees makes paraben free products, including shampoo, as does Jason Natural. When it comes to your long term health, it pays to be a label reader of shampoo too.

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