Breast cancer is a threat to many Filipino women, and although most of us try to avoid the disease by living a healthy lifestyle and going for regular checkups, sometimes, we get blindsided by the most mundane things--everyday household items that we think are harmless.

An article on MedicalNewsToday.com talks about how the products we use on a daily basis may increase our risk of developing breast cancer. Bottle and can linings, cleaners, and even cosmetics may contain harmful chemicals, which when used long-term, may have an impact on the formation of the disease. Take a look at the list below:

  1. Canned food and drinks that are not BPA-free. BPA stands for Bisphenol A, a chemical which causes hormonal imbalance and is known to be associated with breast cancer cases.
  2. Products with fragrances, such as detergents, hand soaps, etc. These usually contain Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) in order to make them unpalatable. PVC is a kind of plastic commonly used in pipes, bottles, and food wraps; unfortunately, it’s also an infamous cancer-causing agent.
  3. Cosmetics and food products that contain Parabens. Parabens are chemicals that are widely used as preservatives. As it is known to mimic estrogens, it disrupts the natural flow of hormones in a woman’s body, and may therefore trigger breast cancer.
  4. Personal care products such as shampoos, soaps, hand washes, and toothpastes which contain any of the following: Triethanolamine, Formaldehyde, Diethanolamine, Parabens, Sodium Lauryl/Laureth Sulfate, Phthalates, Hydantoin, Triclosan, Polyethylene Glycol.

Since these chemicals are commonly found in products we use everyday, it may be difficult to avoid them entirely.

Awareness is the best weapon against any disease. Though there’s no need to be paranoid, it’s important to keep a sharp look-out for things that can harm our bodies, so that we can avoid them as much as we can.

(Photo by Paul Falardeau via Flickr Creative Commons)

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