Reduce Skin Sensitivity: Environmental Causes and Toxic Load
Did you know that topically applied chemicals from skin care products can be traced in our blood stream within minutes?
As the old cliché goes, we are what we eat, but it is also safe to say that we are what we breathe and what we put on our skin.
Toxic Load and Developing Skin Sensitivity
On average, a woman in North American:
- places 5 lbs of chemicals from makeup application a year and
- 8-9 lbs of chemicals from skin care and hygiene products,
- consumes 7 lbs of preservation agents from food,
- and could be exposed to over 400 different chemicals during a single day.
Our bodies must deal with this toxic load (the amount of toxins entering our body) by filtration processes from the kidneys and liver, and by production of antioxidants to neutralize oxidative stress caused by these toxic intruders.
At some point these toxic levels simply become too much to handle and little by little we can begin to see the signs of aging creeping up on us. We also know that inflammation and skin sensitivity issues are increasing throughout the population in the last decades.
Once sensitivities have developed, we become susceptible to even more diverse reactions from even more trigger agents (not only toxins) than the ones that originally caused the sensitivity.
Chemicals in Skincare
Thousands of chemicals are approved for use in skincare formulations by the government. But only a fraction of these have been tested and on top off it the whole industry is self-regulated which really means there is not much regulation going on.
We have all heard of the “toxic dirty dozen” in skin care or the “worst 20 chemicals to avoid”, but we think this list is much larger than that.
Here is a list of ingredients from 5 natural products sold in just our local stores:
polyethylene, polyethylene glycol (PEG), polyoxyethylene, Aluminum starch, cetearyl alcohol, stearic acid, vynil pirolidine, potassium cetyl phosphate, chloprenesil, synthetic wax, mineral oil, sodium polyacrelate…
Reducing Your Toxic Load is Key
It is on us, the consumer, to make smart choices and reduce the toxic load delivered by skin care products, hygiene, cleaning products and food by choosing products with wholesome and natural ingredients.
It is important to read the labels and avoid products with ingredients you cannot pronounce or that you would need a chemical dictionary to understand what they are.
Look for products formulated with fewer ingredients, infused with vitamins and plant extracts in meaningful quantities.
The best medicine to avoid developing skin sensitivities is prevention. So, reduce the toxic load and reap the long-term benefits. Reduce exposure to environmental sensitivities by making smarter food choices, looking for simple organic products to put on your skin and clean your house.