Triclosan is an antibacterial chemical that is added to antibacterial mouthwashes, soaps, toothpastes, cleaning cloths, deodorants, toiletries and cosmetics, including lipstick. Scientists say it may cause muscle and heart problems and should be used with caution. It’s estimated that 450 tons of triclosan are used in EU each year.
The chemical was devised to prevent bacterial infections in hospitals and scientists had thought it was metabolised quickly by the body without harmful effects. However research at the University of California Davis School suggests it may remain active and be transported to body organs, causing damage.
Prof. Isaac Pressah, Prof of the Dept of Molecular Bioscience at Uni of California Davis School for Veterinary Medicine, said:
“Triclosan is found in virtually everyone’s home and is pervasive in the environment. These findings prove strong evidence that the chemical is of concern to both human & environmental health.”
The study’s co-authors warn about the worrying effect it may have on the heart:
“The effects of triclosan on cardiac function is not regulated as a drug but it acts like a potential cardiac depressant in our models…. At the very least our findings call for a dramatic reduction in its use…. For someone who is healthy, a 10% drop in heart function may not have an effect, but if you have heart disease it could make a big difference.”
Previous studies suggest it can also disrupt hormones. Not something we should be sticking on our bodies then, is it? Check your labels and avoid.
Published in “Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA.” Source: Daily Telegraph 14.8.12 THE EVERYDAY CHEMICAL THAT CARRIES A RISK