|Back when soap was safe|
Last week, I touted the value of SoapBox soaps. There are still some of you, however, who believe that unless a soap boasts antibacterial properties, it's not good enough. Folks, listen up! Triclosan, the active ingredient in most antibacterial soaps, is a suspected endocrine disruptor. What does that mean? It might cause early-onset puberty and infertility. Yes, I said "might." But doesn't the word might scare you enough to protect your children from this substance? Besides, scientific studies reveal that soaps containing triclosan are no more effective than regular soap. So, again I ask, is it worth the risk?
The truth is that the FDA hasn't ever approved triclosan for use in antibacterial soaps. Surprising, isn't it? Of course, there is a loophole. They also have never banned it. That loophole is the reason triclosan was permitted to be added to soaps way back in 1978. Of course, the widespread use of it back then wasn't common as it is today. Go into nearly any public restroom and wash your hands. Most likely, you've just been exposed to triclosan and its toxic effects.
The good news is that, due to pressure from groups like the NRDC (Natural Resources Defense Council), triclosan-laced soaps are likely to be off the market within the next two years. Unfortunately, however, that doesn't mean we'll be safe from triclosan, as it's in countless products, including many children's toys, kitchen products, cosmetics, deodorant, toothpaste, shoes, towels, and clothing. If you find a product labeled "antibacterial" or "antimicrobial," chances are good it either contains triclosan or triclocarban, both equally disruptive to your health and the environment.
There are exceptions, of course, as silver and some essential oils, such as tea tree oil, are also known to have antibacterial and/or antimicrobial properties. Read the labels. Know the facts. Keep your kiddos safe and healthy.
Keeping you informed,
Click here for an informative pdf about triclosan from a scientific viewpoint.