Soap products containing at least one of 19 different chemicals have been banned by the FDA.
When shopping for handwash, many of us automatically reach for the antibacterial-pumped soaps but this may soon be a thing of the past. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has called for a ban on certain soaps and body washes as they could prove no more effective than regular soap and could potentially be harmful.
The FDA have already banned soaps that contain triclosan and triclocarban that manufacturers claim improve the antibacterial action but research has found do nothing at all. Seventeen other chemicals are on the list of banned ingredients that will result in the withdrawal of any soaps containing them.
“Companies will no longer be able to market antibacterial washes with these ingredients because manufacturers did not demonstrate that the ingredients are both safe for long-term daily use and more effective than plain soap and water in preventing illness and the spread of certain infections. Some manufacturers have already started removing these ingredients from their products,” the FDA said in a statement.
It was back in 2013 when the FDA started investigating the chemicals that were added to soaps and other items although it was as far back as 1978 when triclosan was first questioned after environmental groups called for limits. However, three years ago the FDA finally gave manufacturers a year to prove the effectiveness that these chemicals provided. So far no scientific evidence has shown that these chemicals make any difference to the bacteria-killing elements of the products.
It has even been suggested that triclosan could potentially be harmful as animal studies have shown high doses can affect hormones in the body although this hasn’t been studied in humans.
“There isn’t enough science to show that over-the-counter (OTC) antibacterial soaps are better at preventing illness than washing with plain soap and water. To date, the benefits of using antibacterial hand soap haven’t been proven,” the FDA stated. “The wide use of these products over a long time has raised the question of potential negative effects on your health.”