The shortest answer to this question is “yes”. The worst part of it is that there are more harmful chemicals in your everyday products than you might have imagined. It is unfortunate the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) puts a check on only a handful of ingredients and prevents them from being used in these products when the European Union has banned more than 1300 of them. In most cases, the FDA has to trust what manufacturers mention on their product packaging as ingredients. When a regulating authority seems so helpless in this situation, what can consumers do? You might not even understand the meaning of more than half the ingredients on the label.
Some Dangerous Ingredients in Your Shampoos and Soaps
There are many different types of ingredients used in manufacturing soaps, shampoos, detergents, etc. As many as 13,000 different chemicals are used for making everyday household products. Here are the most dangerous ones:
SLS, short for Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, is probably one of the most dangerous ingredients commonly found not only in your soaps and shampoos but also in toothpastes. You will hardly find a shampoo or industrial cleaner without this ingredient. When SLS is manufactured, the ethoxylation process introduces 1, 4 dioxane in it. This particular byproduct is carcinogenic in nature.
Parabens are quite like hormones that are naturally present in your body. So, when these xenoestrogens enter your body, they meddle with your body’s natural hormones. It is said that their disruption can even result in cancer. Some British Scientists researched various samples from breast cancer tissues and found discovered that those samples had parabens in them.
Also referred to as PEG, Polyethylene Glycol is created using petroleum as its base. There is possibility of PEG having 1,4-dioxane. It can also contain ethylene oxide, substances that can cause cancer. There are evidences that these chemicals can cause genotoxicity.
As harmless and pleasing as this term looks, there are hundreds of ingredients making these cosmetic and everyday use products smell so good. The chemicals found in these fragrances are said to have harmful effects on the liver. Developmental problems in children can be caused by phthalates that are present in these fragrances.
What Can Possibly Go Wrong?
If proper attention is not given and the much needed steps are not taken by federal agencies, anything bad that you imagine can go wrong. Here are some of the problems that can be caused by the 4 ingredients mentioned above and the overall ingredients found in your shampoos and soaps.
- Increased risk of breast cancer in women
- Reproductive problems in not only women but men too
- Detrimental nervous system problems
- Malfunctioning of prostate gland
- Developmental problems
- Diabetes type II
- Skin irritation
- Lifeless hair and skin
There have been several studies done on how the chemicals in these products cause serious damage to male reproductive system. Here is one of the studies on the harmful effects on the male reproductive system.