An aluminum free deodorant is a very, VERY wise choice. In the last few years, we ordinary, non-chemist, nothing-to-gain-financially types have become very aware of the potential dangers of aluminum in our bodies. There has been a lot of talk about a relationship between aluminum and Alzheimers, although that speculation has been under heavy attack recently.
We intake aluminum through many sources besides just deodorant and anti-perspirant, like drinking water, automobile exhaust, tobacco smoke, aluminum foil, aluminum cookware, some storage containers, other personal care products and aluminum cans.
World Health Organization & Aluminum
The studies suggesting that aluminum and Alzheimers have a relationship first emerged about 20 years ago. The World Health Organization (WHO) has admitted that some studies indicate a relationship between the two but are more reserved about a causal relationship because “the studies did not account for total aluminum intake from all possible sources”.
What? Who cares about the source of the aluminum? The only question is whether it’s dangerous, regardless of the source.
WHO does say that ” most researchers agree that it is an important factor in the dementia component and most certainly deserves continuing research efforts”.
WHO claims that we can ingest up to 50 milligrams of aluminum per day with no adverse effects – but the fact is that they don’t really know the long term effects of aluminum on the human body.
The controversy over aluminum pans has been quite heated. Helen Suh Macintosh, professor of environmental health at Harvard University, says that” the aluminum found in pots and pans isn’t really that dangerous and that the amount of aluminum we absorb from cooking with aluminum pots is only 3-6 milligrams”. [http://planetgreen.discovery.com/food-health/avoid-aluminum-teflon-cookware.html]
The Usual Phony Argument
The usual argument against concern for the toxins we injest on a daily basis is that it’s ‘only a small amount, after all!’ These are always expressed by:
1. Those who have a financial interest in convincing us that just a little bit of this deadly toxin won’t cause any real damage …
2. Or folks who are either naive or are too focused on only one subject area, without considering its relationship to overall life …
It might very well be true that a little bit of aluminum is negligible in terms of health. But the point it that we’re absorbing poisons all day, every day, from all kinds of sources: from our water, the foods we eat, the clothes we wear, most everything we come in contact with and even the air we breathe! It takes a lot of awareness to reduce the amount of toxins and even the most fanatical person can’t avoid them entirely.
The “it’s only a little bit” argument is a total crock!
Is there really any reason to use aluminum in your deodorant when there are other choices? I don’t think so and I hope you don’t either. I have experimented with at least two dozen containers of aluminum free deodorant and I like Tom’s of Maine the best. I prefer the unscented but the Woodspice is nice, too.
Just a Biologist says
Reducing toxic compounds is really tough today. Although a small amount of aluminum may not hurt you in itself that does not mean that there are no synergistic or additive effects once it comes into contact with other chemical compounds. Looking at one single element as a cause to any health problem always leads to errors. However it is always better to error on the side of caution.