For our third and final blog of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, we are going to take a look into parabens and their link to breast cancer.
What Are Parabens?
To give you a bit of background knowledge on parabens; Parabens are preservatives found in cosmetics and personal care products, and occasionally in certain processed foods. Many of us are exposed to parabens on a regular basis. Parabens have been measured in breast tissue, breast milk and placental tissue. High concentrations of parabens have been known to share similar actions of oestrogen. Oestrogen is associated with increased breast cancer risk. Parabens are synthetically produced compounds used as preservatives to prolong the shelf life of products. They are often found in cosmetics and personal care products such as shampoos, conditioners, deodorants, makeup, lotions, skin cleansing products and mouthwash.
Breast Cancer UK states; “it is important to take precautionary measures to protect ourselves and our families, including reducing our exposures to oestrogen mimics, where possible”.
With this in mind, the team here at dandi patch decided it was paramount that we avoided using any parabens in our products to minimise the risk our consumers face when using our products.
Addressing the issue!
So the real issue we want to address is whether exposure to parabens is likely to increase your risk of breast cancer? Scientific research suggests that parabens may be able to interfere with the natural hormone, oestrogen. High levels of oestrogen increase our risk of breast cancer, mainly because oestrogen encourages a high rate of cell division, increasing the possibility of mutations occurring, including those that lead to breast cancer.
Breast cancer UK states that; “At high concentrations, parabens can trigger similar actions to those initiated by naturally occurring oestrogen. It is this ability that suggests that parabens may play a role in breast cancer risk". Research also suggests that parabens might increase the spread of existing breast cancer. Although these effects have been shown clearly in cell culture and in tests on animals, scientists disagree about how relevant this research is to people, as studies on the direct effects of parabens on humans have not been carried out. For more details about this area of research see Breast Cancer UK’s full parabens brief.
The team here at dandi patch wanted to write this blog as an informative article for people who have an interest in this topic area and we hope that this can help people when choosing their cosmetics. At no point are we suggesting we are experts in the area of parabens, nor cancer. However, we are fully aware of the potential risks faced with having these compounds in our products as it has not yet been proved that parabens are definitely not connected to breast cancer, so we would prefer to eliminate the risk as much as possible until this is confirmed. Consequently, we chose paraben free products where possible and have ensured the dandi patch does not contain any parabens giving people a suitable paraben-free sweat solution if desired.