Toxic Chemical in Sunscreens Contaminate 97% of Americans

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

A new study released by the Center for Disease Control shows that nearly all Americans are contaminated with the toxic chemical oxybenzone. The chemical is used primarily in sunscreens to absorb UV-ultraviolet rays. In Europe, sunscreen products that contain 0.5% or more of the chemical must be labeled, “Contains Oxybenzone,” because the chemical has been shown to penetrate into the skin. When oxybenzone gets into the layers of skin it acts as a photosensitizer and increases the production of cancer causing free radicals.

The CDC also showed a higher concentration of oxybenzone in women, most likely due to its use in other cosmetics, including moisturizers which are advertised as having sunscreen capabilities. Ironically, women who use these products to seemingly protect their skin from free radical damage, which causes pre-mature aging of the skin, are actually contributing to such damage.

2006 University of California study published in the journal, “Free Radical Biology and Medicine,” showed the longer oxybenzone and two other sunscreen chemicals remained on the skin, the more free radical damage occurred. So even though doctors and health officials have touted sunscreens as the best method to protect our skin from free radical damage which leads to skin cancer, they actually increase the damage the longer the sunscreen is left on.

The Environmental Working Group (EWG), a nonprofit research organization for public interest groups, lists nearly 600 sunscreen sold in the United States that contain oxybenzone. The EWG also states that one of every eight high SPF sunscreens do not protect against UV-A radiation. With so many sunscreens on the market now linked to this and other dangerous chemicals, it is not hard to see a correlation with the one million new skin cancer cases diagnosed in 2007 alone.

Skin cancer is now the number one diagnosed cancer in men and women in the world. Squamous cell and basal cell carcinomas make up the majority of skin cancers, while melanoma contributes to 75% of all skin cancer deaths according to WebMD.

While a number of recent studies show that daily sunlight exposure actually decreases the risk of certain cancers, there is still a need to protect against over exposure to the sun. “If you are going to be in direct sun exposure for more than 20-30 minutes you should use a natural sunscreen,” states health researcher and nutritionist Thomas Von Ohlen, MS, NC.

“Stay out of the sun during the peak hours of 11 am to 3 pm if possible and consume supplements or foods high in calcium and essential fats like fish to avoid skin cell damage from sunburns.” Von Ohlen also mentions using an all natural sunscreen from www.BestOnEarthProducts.com which contains no oxybenzone or other toxic chemicals

Thomas Von Ohlen MS, NC, is a nutritionist and co-author of the book, “101 Great Ways to Improve Your Health.” He is also the developer of Plasma Pro software, a blood test analysis program for doctors. His FREE newsletter and report on weight loss is available at www.HealYourBodyNow.com