Have you been concerned about using antiperspirants, deodorants, plastic bottles, and your health? A few studies have shown a relationship between breast tumors and antiperspirants, deodorants, and plastic water bottles. I remember many years ago hearing from my mom’s friend Mary, after having a tumor in her breast surgically removed for the second time. The surgeon told her not to use antiperspirants. He stated that studies had shown a link between aluminum in antiperspirants and breast tumors.
The Link Between Antiperspirants, Deodorants, and Breast Tumors
Underarm antiperspirants or deodorants applied near the breast contain potentially harmful ingredients and have been suggested as a possible connection between their use and breast cancer.
Deodorants work by masking your body odor with a more pleasant scent and helping to prevent the bacteria from releasing odors.
Antiperspirants use aluminum-based ingredients to block your sweat glands to stop the flow of sweat to the skin’s surface to reduce the amount of sweat released.
Antiperspirants left on the skin near the breast and lymph nodes can be absorbed into the skin and have hormonal effects on the estrogen in your body, especially after shaving your underarms. Aluminum in these products can stimulate the production of the hormone estrogen in your body. The chemicals from the antiperspirant can go into the lymph nodes, accumulate, and in time change the healthy cells and develop into a tumor due to the estrogen disrupting your hormones. Men are at a lower risk because most men don’t shave their underarms.
Studies have been reported when mouse breast cells treated with aluminum chloride, (at concentrations detected in human breast tissue), form large metastatic tumors when implanted back into mice. The breast tissue in women who used antiperspirants and deodorants have been tested for aluminum levels and were at higher risk for breast cancer and had higher aluminum concentrations in their breasts. The study also found that women with breast cancer had higher levels of aluminum in their breasts than those without breast cancer, irrespective of antiperspirant use.
Parabens and Your Health
There has been some research on parabens, the preservatives found in some health and beauty products including deodorants and antiperspirants that have shown to mimic the activity of estrogen in the body’s cells. It has been reported that parabens are found in breast tumors.
Studies state that the correlation between antiperspirants and deodorants causing tumors is a MYTH. Studies have been known to be shifted either way to get the results one is looking for, relevant to who paid for the study. You may want to use your own judgement when it comes to your health, especially breast health, and use aluminum-free deodorant.
The Link Between Plastic and Breast Tumors
Chemicals such as Dioxin and Bisphenol A (BPA) found in plastic (i.e., food storage containers and water bottles) have been linked to causing breast tumors. The chemical Dioxin is highly poisonous to the cells of your body and causes cancer, especially breast cancer. When heated or frozen, dioxin is released in plastic bottles (i.e., water bottles). Plastic bottles and containers that are used to heat food in a microwave or even water bottles heated up by the sun or in your car may also release Dioxin. The same with freezing plastic water bottles, Dioxin can be released into your drinking water. Dioxin is also in fast food restaurant foam containers, too. Dioxin is a toxin that is increasingly found in breast cancer tissue.
Bisphenol A (BPA) is a manmade chemical product that is used to make many plastic containers: sports water bottles, baby bottles, sippy cups, canned food (i.e., lined metal cans), plastic wrap, and plastic sandwich bags. The BPA chemical used to make certain plastics is a harmful toxin; when it leaks from plastic into the water, it can cause health problems, including breast tumors.
What Can You Do for Your Breast Health?
Natural Deodorants – You have choices in what you want to do to keep your body healthy, including your breasts. If you do not want to expose your body to any chemicals, there are alternatives you can use to help keep your body toxin-free. If you’re using antiperspirant or deodorant, switch to an alternative, natural deodorant product that is aluminum-free and without parabens.
Alternative Deodorant Options:
- Witch hazel
- Baking soda or cornstarch
- Lemon juice
- Rubbing alcohol
- Apple cider vinegar
- Coconut oil
- Baking soda and coconut oil mixture
I don’t recommend using any natural deodorant that stops you from sweating. Applying a product to stop you from sweating shuts down your sweat glands and can affect your lymph nodes too. Apply deodorant to your skin at least an hour after shaving your underarms. You can also apply deodorant to your clothing in the armpit area instead of directly on the skin.
Beware, your body will go through a detoxing process when you switch from an antiperspirant that contains aluminum, and you may have some B.O. for a couple of weeks. This is your body releasing the aluminum build-up.
Alternative Plastic Products:
- Use BPA-Free Containers (i.e., sport water bottles or baby containers)
- Use Stainless Steel Bottles for your drinking liquids (hot or cold)
- Use Glassware Containers to heat your food if you must use a microwave
- Cover Your Food with a Paper Towel when using a microwave
Being an informed consumer enables you to be your own health advocate. Making better choices in the products you use as a woman on or in your own body will help improve your own health, including your breasts.