Washing your hands with these hormone-disrupting products may do more harm than good. Via the Los Angeles Times:
Just days after unveiling new proposals to limit the use of antibiotic medications in livestock raised for human consumption, the FDA’s new measure takes aim at soaps suspected of promoting the development of bacteria resistant to eradication and of exposing consumers to hormone-disrupting chemicals.
If the products are not shown to be safe, effective and superior to soap and water in preventing disease spread, the FDA said manufacturers will be required to reformulate or relabel them as a condition of continued sale.
The FDA is focusing largely on triclosan (used in liquid soaps) and triclocarban (used in bar soaps). In animals, exposure to high concentrations of these compounds has been found to suppress thyroid hormone concentrations and to have estrogenic effects, including premature puberty in females and low sperm count in males. As the chemicals have been found in human breast milk, urine and blood, there is growing concern that the product’s widespread use may affect human health as well.
Research has also suggested a link between the long-term use of bacteria-killing soaps and the rise of resistant bacteria, human allergies and other autoimmune diseases.