By Janet Fang
Posting in Environment
Kids and teens who frequently use antibacterial soaps and body washes may suffer more allergies.
Scientists show how there is such a thing as being too clean.
Young people who use certain antibacterial soaps too much may suffer more allergies. To make matters worse, the same study also found that the much-maligned BPA might impair the immune system.
Triclosan is a popular antibacterial agent and common ingredient in soaps, toothpaste, kitchenware, trashcan liners, and diaper bags. And bisphenol A (BPA) is a common chemical found in everyday plastics, and recently declared toxic by Canada and banned from baby bottles in the EU.
In this study, researchers compared concentrations of triclosan and BPA in urine with antibody levels and allergy diagnoses. They looked at people over the age of 6 using data from the 2003-2006 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey.
People 18 and under who have higher levels of triclosan were more likely to be diagnosed with allergies or hay fever.
“The triclosan findings in the younger age groups may support the ‘hygiene hypothesis,’ which maintains living in very clean and hygienic environments may impact our exposure to micro-organisms that are beneficial for development of the immune system,” says Aiello. The overuse of antibiotics and antibacterial agents are widely blamed for creating superbugs – bacteria that have developed resistance.
Meanwhile, the study also shows that people over 18 with higher BPA exposure have troubled immune responses – indicated by their higher levels of cytomegalovirus antibodies. On the other hand, in the underage group, higher BPA levels corresponded with lower levels of the antibodies.
Both triclosan and BPA have long been suspected of causing health problems as environmental toxicants that disrupt the functions of your hormones.
"We wanted to begin to address this gap in our understanding of how prevalent chemicals such as BPA and triclosan influence immune function, because our immune systems play a crucial role in determining our overall health status," says Clayton.
In some consumer products, triclosan does provide benefits. In 1997, FDA’s review of triclosan in Colgate Total toothpaste showed evidence that it prevents gingivitis. But the agency has no evidence that triclosan in antibacterial soaps and body washes provides any benefit over washing with regular soap and water.
Nov 30, 2010
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Nothing new there...it's how polio went from a minor child-hood disease to an episodic epidemic. Unfortunately, we often seem to have to break biological systems to understand them,.
The list of autoimmune disorders that doctors think are triggered by over cleanliness is growing. We are seeing a surge in these disorders that mirrors the increased use of anti-bacterial drugs in everything we touch. The body learns to attack itself when there is no outside threat. Then we go out of our way to make a bad situation worse by killing the weaker bugs with a 99.5 percent effective product, leaving the only the strong bugs to kill us faster.
How can people not understand this instinctively? Throughout this whole horrible craze, a person with a 7th grade education understood that this practice was working against the human body by destroying our resistance and making "superbugs."