Does your healthy diet go skin deep?
Soap and cosmetics can contain the very chemicals, such as preservatives, that you may make specific efforts to avoid in your food. If you avoid preservatives in your food, you can also
avoid preservatives in your soap. For example, many soaps are preserved with BHT.
So why care about the ingredients of your soap? Well, chemicals can enter your blood stream not only through Ingestation but also through Absorbtion. Absorbtion is the process whereby some chemical substances can enter your body through contact with your skin. And a warm, moist environment, such as in the shower, would only enhance this phenomenon.
"Chemicals can enter the body by moving through the skin, called
. The skin is a very good barrier and provides protection from many hazards, but some substances can penetrate the skin, then enter the blood stream and be carried to all parts of the body."
Many medicines utilize Absorbtion as part of their delivery systems. For example, many of
us have heard of the nicotine patch. You may have also seen commercials for the new birth
control patch that replaces oral contraceptives. These medicinal products utilize the
phenomenon of Absorbtion.
Just as you often don't know what you are getting when eating out at a restaurant or foodstand,
the same holds true for your soap. Does the soap manufacturer have the same philosophy as you do
about health? Is the manufacturer aware of the health issues related to Absorbtion? These types of questions should be asked by health-conscious consumers
who wish to closely manage what enters their body.