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Is Your Sunscreen Good Enough To Eat? by Thomas Cho

Is Your Sunscreen Good Enough To Eat? by
Article Posted: 11/12/2014
Article Views: 241
Articles Written: 107
Word Count: 820
Article Votes: 0
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Is Your Sunscreen Good Enough To Eat?

Summer is fast approaching and that means lots of sun, beach and outdoor activities. Yessss! It also means covering up so you don’t get burnt. But have you ever stopped to think about what you’re putting on your skin? Could sunscreen actually be increasing your cancer risk? Let’s find out.

What’s In Your Sunscreen?

Did you know that your skin is the largest organ in your body? Due to the fact it’s so porous, it absorbs anything you put on it. However many of us fail to consider what we’re slathering ourselves with.

The majority of sunscreens on the market have a host of synthetic ingredients in them that are more harm than good. Here are some common sunscreen ingredients and their potential effects on your body.

Parabens – prevent the growth of microbes in cosmetics but are known to disrupt hormone function, an effect that is linked to increased risk of breast cancer and reproductive toxicity. Oxybenzone - absorbs UV light but mimics oestrogen in the body, disrupts hormones and causes cell damage that can promote cancer. Homosalate – disrupts oestrogen, androgen and progesterone and shows up in breast milk. Methoxycinnamate - Creates free radicals, interferes with hormones and has been found to kill cells in mice even at low doses when exposed to sunlight. Octocrylene - produces oxygen radicals when exposed to UV light and shows up in breast milk. PABA (Para amino benzoic acid) – causes liver damage, creates free radicals and skin allergies.

These ingredients can reap havoc on your body by being absorbed into your blood system and act like oestrogen, disrupt your natural hormones, irritate the skin and release free radicals when activated by the sun. Not to mention that in some countries the cosmetic companies are not monitored as well as say food or drug companies are which allows them to add whatever ingredients they want to and not be accountable.

This Sunscreen Ingredient Actually Accelerates Cancer

We’re told to use sunscreen to prevent skin cancer but this ingredient actually speeds up the development of skin tumours when applied to the skin in the presence of sun light¹. That ingredient? Retinyl palmitate – a form of vitamin A. While the evidence is not definitive, studies conducted on mice resulted in faster tumour growth.

In addition, the Environmental Science Technology recently published a study that oxybenzone, methoxycinnamate, and PABA are linked to cancer.

Safer Solutions

A great resource is the Environmental Working Group’s website. It lists more than 69,000 products that come into contact with your skin and outlines the safety of ingredients in your sunscreen, moisturiser, shampoo, make up and more. By using their simple rating formula you can make a safer choice.

I recommend you find an organic sunscreen from your local health food or supplement store but if that’s not cost effective consider eating your sunscreen! There are a variety of foods that are great for protecting your skin, repairing it and aiding in the prevention of skin cancer. Avoid eating any processed foods to get the full benefit of the foods mentioned below.

Foods That Protect Against Skin Cancer

Micro algae like spirulina and chlorella contain a carotenoid called astaxanthin. Astaxanthin which is 550 times stronger than vitamin E, protects both the skin and eyes from UV radiation. It’s also found in salmon and fish oil. Foods high in lycopene which is an antioxidant and provides long term protection against UV radiation – such as tomatoes, watermelon, peppers, papaya and pink grapefruit. Pomegranate contain a powerful polyphenol compound such as catechin and anthocyanin and this strengthens the outer skin and adds protection from UV radiation. Foods containing tocotrienols such as barley, rye, oats and rice bran oil. All dark green leafy vegetables contain antioxidants which help reverse free radical damage. Foods containing omega 3 fatty acids aid in avoiding sunburn. Almonds and sunflower seeds both high in vitamin E.

Foods that Repair the Skin

Vitamin C found in citrus fruits are great for killing off free radicals caused by sunlight. Almonds and sunflower seeds help prevent skin damage, slows the aging of skin, and can aid in diminishing scars.

Foods that Prevent Skin Cancer

Green or black tea (2 cups a day) caffeine free contains EGCG a natural chemical which kills free radicals. Foods high in lycopene. Spinach, kale and silverbeet - a study showed these three reduced squamous cell skin cancer by up to 50%. Prevent melanoma by eating foods high in omega 3.

Vitamin D

Your body can’t naturally make vitamin D and the best way for you to get it is from the sun. Spending 20 minutes in direct sun allows your body to generate vitamin D3 which helps boost your immune system, improve your mood and yes, help fight skin cancer. Oh the irony..

For more natural health tips visit our blog at:

Related Articles - melanoma, parabens, skin cancer, skin cancer prevention, sunscreen, vitamin d,

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