As we discussed in previous posts, we can’t stress enough how important it is to choose products that are free of toxins. This is a crucial step in protecting your body and skin while dealing with cancer, because your skin has become so fragile and sensitive. But did you know that the container the product comes in can be dangerous and toxic too? Product packaging is an extremely important (although often overlooked) factor in protecting your health while preventing, fighting or recovering from cancer.
Unfortunately, the rise in the use of chemicals in today’s packaging coincides with the continual increase in cancer. “The real clue is what’s happening across the population in terms of diseases that are on the rise, from children’s cancer to breast cancer,” says Jane Houlihan, the research vice president at Environmental Working Group. “These increases can’t be explained by rapid changes in genetics.” Perhaps they can only be explained by the increased usage of toxins in products and product packaging? Evidence continues to build linking the toxicity of daily, cosmetic, and other household products to the rapid rise in cancer rates in every generation.
The first step in avoiding dangerous packaging is to choose brands that use non-toxic materials. Many chemicals from labels and bottles can leak into products over time. Lafe Larson, President of Lafe’s Natural Body Care, said consumers are “…extremely concerned about the chemicals in packaging.” Try brands that have a focus on eco-friendly packaging, because they usually use less toxic packaging components. Look for glass instead of plastic, labels with alternate sources of ink (like soy), or plastics stamped with the recycling numbers 1, 2, 4 and 5. Plastics marked 3, 6 and 7 contain endocrine disrupters which can create hormonal imbalance issues (i.e., estrogen-dominant diseases like breast or ovarian cancer).
For more natural-product suggestions and eco-packaging, check out one of our favorite toxin-free blogs, Eco Pretty. To read more about chemicals in plastics, look at “Avoiding Toxins in Plastic Packaging.”
If cancer-related hand-foot syndrome (a common side-effect of chemotherapy) is making it painful to open containers, look for brands with flip-top lids and pumps that will be easier to use (instead of the twisting jar lids or child-proof varieties).
* Please share your opinions, advice or favorite products with us!
Image courtsey of Adam Polselli Photography