Healthy me Cristina Sales

Parabens in medicine? Yes it is true and they are dangerous!

What are parabens? 
Parabens are a family of chemical substances, derived from benzoic acid, with solvent, antimicrobial, antifungal and antibacterial capabilities. 
Parabens are present in nature, a bit everywhere, protecting animals and plants because of their antifungal and antimicrobial capabilities. 
In the animal world we find them in the mucous membranes of insects and mammals. 
In plants there are parabens in strawberries, onions, carrots, peaches, olives, white beans, cucumber, vanilla, …

Parabens as preservatives for food, drug and cosmetic 
The ability to be solvents, antimicrobial and antifungal are the reasons why Parabens have been so widely used for decades as preservatives in the food, cosmetic and pharmaceutical industries. 

These are the most common parabens: 
Methylparaben (E218) 
Ethylparaben (E214) 
Propylparaben (E216) 
But the fact that parabens are part of the composition of plants and animals, does not mean that their repeated use is without risks to human health.

Consumption of parabens - risks to human health 

Parabens are hormone disruptors. 
This means that, in humans, parabens "mimic estrogen function". They can bind to estrogen cell receptors and induce the cell to behave as if, in fact, had been activated by estrogen. The continued action of hormone disrupting parabens is associated with a higher likelihood of hormone dependent cancers, with an emphasis on breast cancer, in whose tissues were found high concentration of parabens.  

In men, hormone disrupting may decrease fertility and improve the prostatic diseases.

Parabens cause allergies 

Parabens absorption through the skin, as hygiene products, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals or as medicines, can cause hypersensitivity and dermal or respiratory allergies.   

These allergic and hypersensitivity reactions may have a delayed start and evolve with slow and progressive deterioration making it difficult to establish the cause-effect relationship, the key to solving the problem.

Parabens cause severe skin changes 

Some parabens used in cosmetics or drugs applied to the skin potentiate the harmful action of UV rays on the skin.   

Parabens increase oxidative stress and changes in the DNA of skin cells favoring skin aging and increasing the likelihood of skin cancer.

In non organic toiletries and cosmetics, the presence of parabens is practically constant. 

But is there parabens hidden in excipients of medication that your family take regularly? 

The parabens are used as preservatives and solvents of many drugs/medicines especially in creams, drops, suspensions and syrups.

The danger of parabens, such as hormone disruptors or causing sensitivity reactions and allergies, is related to the repetition and regularity of their intake and absorption. 

If you take a product with parabens, casually and for a few days, you may not have any adverse effect on the body. 
But if it is a drug which is very frequently taken - for weeks or months - it is important to be aware of the risks. 

Read carefully the labels of medications that your family take regularly. Look for the presence of parabens in excipients. 
Your surprise will be much higher than you think! 

BluEmerald - for a healthy, conscious and sustainable life.



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