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Avoid Chemicals by Using Natural Sunscreen

Health Tips update for Friday, June 11:  Sunscreen has become synonymous with summer. We know we need to protect our skin against the sun’s dangerous rays. While it helps protect against skin cancer, some sun blocks can carry physical and environmental risks.

Many sunscreens and sun blocks can contain parabens in the ingredients. Parabens mimic estrogen and disrupt the endocrine system. Other sunscreen ingredients – benzophenon (oxybenzone), octinoxate, cinnamates and homosalate – can actually increase the risk of cancer. Because we wear sunscreens while swimming or partaking in water activities, many of the chemical ingredients in sunscreens have been found in our waterways. This disrupts the hormonal systems of fish and wildlife that live in the water or drink it. (Here’s a helpful hint: read the ingredients and if you can’t pronounce all of the ingredients, put the bottle back on the shelf.)

To make sure you’re avoiding the chemicals in sunscreen, you can make your own at home. Natural ingredients that you can buy at your favorite natural products store can be turned into sunscreen. Just mix plain zinc oxide ointment with your favorite natural lotion for protection made from all natural health supplies.

You can also protect your skin by staying out of the sun during its peak hours (about 10:00am to 2:00pm), when sunburn and sun damage is most likely to occur. If you do need to be outside, find a shaded area, use an umbrella or wear a wide-brimmed hat. You can also wear sun protective clothing. Eat plenty of dark green, red and yellow fruits and vegetables. These foods promote skin health and make it less prone to damage.



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