Several months ago, I brought your attention to the groundbreaking research of Dr. Elizabeth Plourde, the author of Sunscreens Biohazard – Treat as Hazardous Waste. A hormone specialist with 25 years of extensive medical research and writing to her credit, Dr. Plourde has recently focused her attention on the hormonally-disruptive chemicals utilized in sunscreens. After a huge response from my blog article The 10 Most Shocking Things About Sunscreen, I asked Dr. Plourde to join me on video to share her groundbreaking research with all of you directly.
According to Dr. Plourde, sunscreens are a biohazard – not only do they not reduce the risk of skin cancers and melanoma, but they cause photo-aging and harm the oceans of the world.
Watch my interview with Dr. Plourde here:
Sunscreens provide a false sense of security – blocking only the .4% of the solar spectrum (UVB) that causes sunburn, the body’s warning signal that you’ve had too much sun. Dr. Plourde likens sunscreen use to cutting the wire on the red warning light on your car’s dashboard. When we slather on sunscreen, we are making it possible to stay outside 10-20-30x longer, exposing us to huge amounts of near-infrared (IRA) radiation (which accounts for up to 47% of the solar spectrum). IRA has been found to reach deeper into the skin than UV rays, causing damage to collagen and releasing free radicals.
Dr. Plourde’s book includes some 800 references – mostly long-term studies that have only been completed in the last several years. These studies show that the toxic chemicals in sunscreen act as endocrine-disruptors, and are estrogenetic and anti-testosterone. Mineral-based sunscreens (zinc oxide and titanium dioxide) are not a safe alternative as they are made from nano-sized particles so tiny that they are able to breach cell membranes, nuclear membranes and the blood/brain barrier. Even the newer “micronized” sunscreens have been detected in bone marrow cells.
I know this information is more than a little disturbing, but there are practical suggestions that will help you to transition into a skin-protective program from the outside in and the inside out. In my blog article, Practicing Safe Sun, I discuss the important of antioxidants and their role as Mother Nature’s protective sunscreens.
The carotenoids lycopene and astaxanthin are the antioxidants of choice which seem to hold special promise as natural sunscreens. In addition to consuming lycopene-rich foods like tomatoes, pink grapefruit and watermelon, I would consider a supplement that contains at least 6 mg of lycopene daily. Highly touted as being 500 times more powerful in antioxidant activity than Vitamin E and ten times more powerful than Vitamin A, astaxanthin does double duty as a natural anti-inflammatory. Although foods like salmon are extremely high in astaxanthin, one would need to consume up to three pounds every day to enhance your skin’s natural protection. Since this is neither practical nor recommended due to heavy metal contamination of fish in this day and age, a daily supplement of about 4-5 mg would be ideal.