Did you know the skin is the largest organ in our body? It also has many functions
• act as a barrier to the external world, protecting the internal organs from infections
• It eliminates waste through perspiration
• Seals in moisture maintaining the delicate fluid balance in the body
• Produces vitamin D
• Full of sensory cells that send feedback to your brain in relation to the external environment.
One of the interesting facts about our skin is that it is porous. To prove this yourself, rub a clove of garlic on the soles of your feet and within minutes you will taste the garlic in your mouth or rub a fresh chilli with your fingers and you will start to sweat on your scalp. The skin absorbs what it comes in contact with.
Our skin is vital to our health, yet many people fail to take care of it. Informed choices regarding what skincare products you use on your skin is critical to optimise your health.
What goes on you ends up in you.
A US 2004 study found that the average adult uses nine personal care products each day, containing 126 different chemicals. The effect of these chemicals on and in your body are not fully understood, there are however two that stand out –
• Parabens, a commonly used preservative in skincare products, have been found to spur on the growth of various types of breast cancer.
• Sodium lauryl/laureth sulphate (SLS/SLES), a surfactant, detergent and emulsifier used in thousands of cosmetic products is a skin irritant and linked to cancer.
There is a connection between chemical exposures, in particular those we use on our skin and adverse health conditions ranging from mild irritation to various cancers. When choosing skin care products, check the fine print in the ingredient list and remember, what goes on you ends up in you.