Research by doctors from California Pacific Medical Center found evidence that BPA and methylparaben (a preservative found in some cosmetics and personal care products) can interfere with the effectiveness of breast-cancer medications. These drugs normally work by slowing the growth of breast cells (both cancerous and non-cancerous), but when researchers exposed the cells to BPA and methylparaben in the lab after treatment with tamoxifen (a cancer medication), they continued to grow. Even more surprising, the study suggested that these two chemicals seem to be more effective at driving cancer than naturally occurring estrogen.
The San Franciso Chronicle quoted Dr. William Goodson, lead author of the study, as saying:
BPA and methylparaben are hard to avoid because they are used so widely and are even found in household dust. He said he does not know whether the effects of exposure to the chemicals are reversible. It's used so much. We kind of swim in it.
As concerned consumers, it's up to us to demand change so that we can successfully decrease our daily exposure to toxic chemicals. While we push for new legislation, we should also be speaking loudly with our biggest weapon – money. Insist that manufacturers be honest about what materials are used in their products so you can make an informed decision – otherwise, just don't buy it.
- Tell your Representative that safe cosmetics are important to you and ask him or her to sign on as a co-sponsor of the Safe Cosmetics Act – contact them now
- Join the Breast Cancer Fund in asking canned food makers if they'll phase out BPA – contact them now
- Californians, join EWG in protecting your children in tell Gov. Brown to sign the Toxin-Free Infants and Toddlers Act – contact them now
Photo source: Flickr (Annie Cavanagh)