This ONE Change Can Improve Your Teenager’s Health

Make This One Change to Improve Your Teen's Health

New research shows this one simple but crucial step parents can take to improve their teenager’s health:

Eliminate beauty products containing harmful chemicals, and replace them with natural options.

The word “natural” gets a lot of flack on social media these days. Natural-living types are regularly ridiculed for being scared of “toxins” and “chemicals,” despite the fact that there are documented issues with the chemicals added to body and beauty products (as well as food, household cleaners, and more). Phthalates, parabens, and Bisphenol A are examples that typically make their way into daily use, without a conscious effort to avoid them. Each of these chemicals has proven negative effects on human health.

The new study, led by Kim Harley, Ph.D., a researcher with the Center for Environmental Research and Children’s Health, showed that the levels of hormone-disrupting chemicals dropped significantly when such efforts were made.

Related: Makeup-Free Selfies and the Fight Against Cancer

The research found that using body and beauty products free of common chemicals such as phthalates, parabens and triclosan “can reduce personal exposure to possible endocrine disrupting chemicals. Involving youth in the design and implementation of the study was key to recruitment, retention, compliance, and acceptability of the intervention.

What’s the problem with hormone-disrupting chemicals?

Hormone-disruptors affect the endocrine system, which can cause adverse effects to the developmental, neurological, reproductive and immune systems. This can include infertility, endometriosis, and cancer.

So what can you do? Start using products that are labeled paraben- and phthalate-free, and learn to read labels for other potentially questionable ingredients.

Some products are marketed as “natural” (think Aveeno), without actually qualifying as such. And that’s the problem– the label “natural” has no qualifications. It can legally be slapped on any product, as it is not a term that is currently regulated.

If you have a local health food store, check out its body products.

It’s still a good idea to read labels, but generally those products will be safer. The SkinDeep Database is also an excellent tool for searching body product brands to see their toxicity rating.

Thankfully, there is a wide variety of make-up, lotion, fragrance, and other beauty products to choose from, that are safe, fun, and high quality. As customer demand rises, more companies are choosing to make options without problematic additives, and the market is ever-expanding.

Name your favorite natural product below!

Image via BeverlyIsLike

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