The American philosopher and naturalist Henry David Thoreau roamed far and wide over the hills and mountains of his native Massachusetts and neighboring New Hampshire. In his masterwork, "Walden," ...View Article
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Posted on 04-28-2015
The long-term use of hand sanitizers which contain triclosan or triclocarbon is under the scrutiny of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. They are questioning not only the safety of these products but whether they actually work better than just soap and water at preventing bacterial infections. Triclosan, used as a bactericide in personal care products such as hand sanitizers, toothpaste and deodorant, has been linked to estrogen-mediated responses (which increases breast cancer risk), has been found to suppress thyroid hormone function, and shown to alter testosterone concentrations.1
By 2016 companies that use triclosan will be required to provide the FDA with updated data on the product's safety and effectiveness.2 The FDA has already stated that liquid and bar soaps containing either triclosan or triclocarbon could pose health risks suck as bacterial resistance or hormonal effects.2
When you use a product containing triclosan, you can absorb a small amount through your skin or mouth. A 2008 study, which was designed to assess exposure to triclosan in a representative sample of U.S. children and adults, found triclosan in the urine of nearly 75 percent of those tested!3
The World Health Organization announced this year that obsession and over-use of antibiotics has resulted in antibiotic resistance in every part of the world.4 The report focused on antibiotic resistance in seven different bacteria responsible for common, serious diseases such as bloodstream infections, diarrhea, pneumonia, urinary tract infections and gonorrhoea.4 The rates of antibiotic prescription levels are disturbing. When conducting a new study analyzing the national prescription drug database for 2010, Center of Disease Control Researchers found that 833 antibiotic prescriptions were prescribed for every 1,000 people.5 In the U.S. the overuse of antibiotics in farming (to prevent animals from getting sick and to fatten them up) is also widely fingered as a source of drug-resistant bacteria. While antibiotics are often prescribed to treat bacterial infections, they are not effective against viral infections. Viral infections that should not be treated with antibiotics include:
Sore throats (except for those resulting from strep throat)
Triclosan isn't an essential ingredient in many products. While triclosan added to toothpaste has been shown to help prevent gingivitis, there's no evidence that antibacterial soaps and body washes containing triclosan provide any extra benefits, according to the Food and Drug Administration.3 Washing your hands is your number one protection against the acquisition and spread of infectious disease. You do not need antimicrobial soap to get the job done.
Hand washing tips:
In addition to proper hand washing, several supplements can be used throughout the year to boost your immune system:
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