Does Your Antiperspirant Cause Cancer?
September 20, 2007
Aluminum, a common ingredient added to antiperspirants to stop skin sweating, may be linked to breast cancer, a study by British scientists found.
The researchers tested breast samples from 17 breast-cancer patients who had undergone mastectomies. The women who used antiperspirants had deposits of aluminum in their outer breast tissue. Concentrations of aluminum were higher in the tissue closest to the underarm than in the central breast.
Aluminum is not normally found in the human body, and the researchers believe the metal is being absorbed from antiperspirant sprays and roll-ons.
Animal studies have found that aluminum can cause cancer, and the British researcher who led this study, Dr. Chris Exley from Keele University, has also suggested that the aluminum content of sunscreens could increase users’ risk of skin cancer and Alzheimer’s disease.
Further studies are needed to determine if the aluminum came from antiperspirants and whether it contributed to breast cancer.
The director-general of the Cosmetic, Toiletry & Perfumery Association said they do not believe that the aluminum in antiperspirants is absorbed by the body.