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Is antibacterial soap a good thing? No: definitely not!

They teached me at school: you need to wash your hands with soap and water to prevent the spread of germs. So it seems logical that washing your hands with antibacterial—soap would do a better job then other soaps to kill these germs. It turns out that this is not only false, but those antibacterial soaps (and hand sanitizers, sponges and other antibacterial products) could be really dangerous. Here are 6 reasons why.

1. Antibacterial soap can contribute to build antibiotic-resistant bacteria

Maybe you have heard about how overuse of antibiotics is causing the rise of antibiotic-resistant 'superbugs' Well, the same can be said of antibacterial products like soap. All antibacterial soaps contain germ killing chemicals and some also the ingredient triclosan. When bacteria are exposed to these chemicals or triclosan, they can undergo genetic mutations. These mutations not only protect them from the antibacterial product you are using, but can make them more difficult to kill with antibiotics.

2. Antibacterial soap can possibly de-regulates hormones

In animal studies it was found that antibacterial ingredients altered the hormones in rats, causing an estrogenic effect. The Food and Drug Administration says that animal studies aren't always indicative of what will happen to humans, but even they recommend reviewing the risks further and say that concerned consumers should use regular soap instead. For humans there are worries that it could lead to infertility, artificial-advanced early puberty, obesity and cancer.

3. Antibacterial soap may impair muscle function

The list of risks associated with antibacterial ingredients go on! A study found that these ingredients 'hinders human muscle contractions at the cellular level and inhibits normal muscle functioning in both fish and mice' The researchers weren't even exposing cells to super-high dosages during the study. They used levels of antibacterial ingredients similar to what we experience every day.


4. Antibacterial soap increases risk of allergies

There are a lot of theories about why allergies are on the rise and one is that the overly-sanitized environment that we live in is harming the development of our immune system. Several studies support this theory. It found that the ingredients commonly found in antibacterial products causes mutations, which may lead to food allergies.

5. Antibacterial soap is bad for the environment

When you wash your hands with antibacterial soap, it doesn't just disappear down the drain. It gets into our environment and could have disastrous consequences. The antibacterial chemicals in soap aren't completely removed by wastewater treatment facilities. The chemicals get transferred into sludge, which is then put on agricultural land and could contaminate surface water. Why is this something to worry about? Because both these typical ingredients degrade into carcinogens! If these get into the food and water systems, then we could have a massive health problem on our hands

6. Antibacterial soap isn't any more effective than regular soap

On top of all the fact is that antibacterial soap is no better in preventing diseases than regular soap. This should not be too surprising considering that most diseases are caused by viruses and not bacteria, so antibacterial soap isn't effective! So why do big manufacturers still make it? Simply because the ingredients are cheap.

We do want to protect the ones we love, right? Of course we do. That’s why we always want to do the best possible. And we are also willing to learn, that’s what I did. No, I have not always known what I know now and learn every day. I did not do all the research myself but use the information that has been established during many years by famous doctors and institutes. And they advice that a simple hand wash with natural soap should do the trick. The water does not need to be hot and the best is scrubbing with soap for about 30 seconds to get properly clean.

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