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  1. #1
    Mega BHUZzer Elianae's Avatar
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    Is Talcum Powder Really Bad for You??

    Hi ladies and gents,

    I had a quick question for you, that I couldn't find a direct answer to on the net. Is talcum powder bad for you? I saw several articles saying it contributes to cancer, but my Mother-in Law brought me some really nice scented talc from Pakistan. It seems it is very popular in India and surrounding countries, and many women and men use it daily.

    I use very little, and I like it's scent and moisture-absorbing properties. I used a bit as a face powder, and it really brightened up my skin and made it look nice. I mean, it is an all-natural mineral, and many people have been using it for hundreds of years with no ill effects. People have been using it on babies' bottoms for years, and gymnasts use it every time before they hit the parallel bars. Pond's is the most popular brand of Talcum Powder in India, and they have several popular varieties. I've heard American talc is the worst, with having asbestos-like properties. But there are carcinogens everywhere! So I don't know if I should throw this product out, or not be concerned. Talc's in a lot of other household products, too, including antacids.

    Thoughts?


  2. #2
    Ultimate BHUZzer Azhia's Avatar
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    Re: Is Talcum Powder Really Bad for You??

    I can only give you the MUA perspective...talc has the potential to clog pores and enlarge them because it is not as finely milled as mica or other powder-like substances.

    Talc, as an "all natural" mineral substance (I'm not being sarcastic to your description, I'm expressing sarcasm at the way that the term is promoted these days by commercial interests), may have been safer back in the day or in countries where there is not as much chemical pollution and contaminants.


  3. #3
    Advanced BHUZzer SummerSahar's Avatar
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    Re: Is Talcum Powder Really Bad for You??

    Quote Originally Posted by Elianae View Post
    Hi ladies and gents,

    I had a quick question for you, that I couldn't find a direct answer to on the net. Is talcum powder bad for you? I saw several articles saying it contributes to cancer, but my Mother-in Law brought me some really nice scented talc from Pakistan. It seems it is very popular in India and surrounding countries, and many women and men use it daily.

    I use very little, and I like it's scent and moisture-absorbing properties. I used a bit as a face powder, and it really brightened up my skin and made it look nice. I mean, it is an all-natural mineral, and many people have been using it for hundreds of years with no ill effects. People have been using it on babies' bottoms for years, and gymnasts use it every time before they hit the parallel bars. Pond's is the most popular brand of Talcum Powder in India, and they have several popular varieties. I've heard American talc is the worst, with having asbestos-like properties. But there are carcinogens everywhere! So I don't know if I should throw this product out, or not be concerned. Talc's in a lot of other household products, too, including antacids.

    Thoughts?
    Don't be too concerned. I'm a toxicologist, and I've done some research on talc because my company uses it in products we sell. Talc is only a hazard when inhaled, and the reason it is a suspected carcinogen is because talc contains quartz or asbestos. These are crystalline substances that, when inhaled, gets into your lungs with its sharp little sides and rub against the pulmonary lining. This abrasive action in turn causes your tissues to go into rapid repair mode, and when in rapid repair mode, cell replication is bound to make mistakes (cell reproduction goes more for quantity rather than quality, much like when I type too fast when I'm in a hurry, I make more mistakes). Cell mistakes can equate to lung tumors if not caught in time by your system, but only if you inhale a LOT. Regulations state that if you have a carcinogen at any quantity over 0.1%, you have to give a carcinogen warning. Your talc has very little quartz/asbestos in it (I think I remember it's around 2.5%), so really, there's not much to worry about. If you'd like, you can wear a mask while you apply it, but remember: it's ONLY a risk if inhaled, not if it simply touches your skin.


  4. #4
    Advanced BHUZzer SummerSahar's Avatar
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    Re: Is Talcum Powder Really Bad for You??

    Quote Originally Posted by Azhia View Post
    I can only give you the MUA perspective...talc has the potential to clog pores and enlarge them because it is not as finely milled as mica or other powder-like substances.

    Talc, as an "all natural" mineral substance (I'm not being sarcastic to your description, I'm expressing sarcasm at the way that the term is promoted these days by commercial interests), may have been safer back in the day or in countries where there is not as much chemical pollution and contaminants.
    Actually, talc is and has always been naturally contaminated with the minerals that cause cancer since it is a mined substance. The rock it comes from has not changed for thousands of years, its content is in no danger of being altered from one century to the next nor from one country to the next.


  5. #5
    Ultimate BHUZzer Azhia's Avatar
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    Re: Is Talcum Powder Really Bad for You??

    Kind of the same way that silicosis happens?


  6. #6
    Advanced BHUZzer SummerSahar's Avatar
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    Re: Is Talcum Powder Really Bad for You??

    Quote Originally Posted by Azhia View Post
    Kind of the same way that silicosis happens?
    Exackery!
    :-)


  7. #7
    Ultimate BHUZzer Azhia's Avatar
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    Re: Is Talcum Powder Really Bad for You??

    I'm still staying away from it! ;o.


  8. #8
    Ultimate BHUZzer ssipes's Avatar
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    Re: Is Talcum Powder Really Bad for You??

    At one time I read that ,talc has been correlated with increased risks of ovarian cancer. The nature of the correlation was not fully understood. However, ovarian cancer is a very very bad cancer to get, so I have stayed away from talcum powder ever since then, at least in terms of using it all over the body, powdering down the private parts, etc.


  9. #9
    Master BHUZzer nasila's Avatar
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    Re: Is Talcum Powder Really Bad for You??

    I remember reading that using talc on the genitals was linked to ovarian cancer. It's also a no-no for moms due to the chance that baby will inhale it, so "Baby Powders" are supposed to be used with extreme caution.


  10. #10
    Official BHUZzer ThespiSis's Avatar
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    Re: Is Talcum Powder Really Bad for You??

    Cornstarch-based powders are a good alternative.


  11. #11
    Ultimate BHUZzer Azhia's Avatar
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    Re: Is Talcum Powder Really Bad for You??

    Quote Originally Posted by ThespiSis View Post
    Cornstarch-based powders are a good alternative.
    Yes, and I think they're using that more often as the main ingredient. When I recommend to clients to do "the baby powder thing" to their hair, the baby powder that is used is the cornstarch variety. Often lavender-scented too, which is always nice, esp. for the "baby powder thing"!


  12. #12
    Mega BHUZzer damiena's Avatar
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    Re: Is Talcum Powder Really Bad for You??

    Quote Originally Posted by ssipes View Post
    At one time I read that ,talc has been correlated with increased risks of ovarian cancer. The nature of the correlation was not fully understood. However, ovarian cancer is a very very bad cancer to get, so I have stayed away from talcum powder ever since then, at least in terms of using it all over the body, powdering down the private parts, etc.
    I have read that as well, but on further digging, they injected the ovaries of lab animals with it to determine the carcinogenic properties. Sick, sick, sick. I loathe animal testing; it is cruel and quite frankly, I have no plans of injecting talc into MY ovaries. It is like the cancer causing warning on saccharin labels. They injected the poor animals with more than the average person could consume in a lifetime. Nice, huh?


  13. #13
    Mega BHUZzer zafirah's Avatar
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    Re: Is Talcum Powder Really Bad for You??

    Quote Originally Posted by damiena View Post
    I have read that as well, but on further digging, they injected the ovaries of lab animals with it to determine the carcinogenic properties. Sick, sick, sick. I loathe animal testing; it is cruel and quite frankly, I have no plans of injecting talc into MY ovaries. It is like the cancer causing warning on saccharin labels. They injected the poor animals with more than the average person could consume in a lifetime. Nice, huh?
    How else are they supposed to test these things? There would be an even bigger uproar if they didn't!

    Z


  14. #14
    Mega BHUZzer kashmir's Avatar
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    Re: Is Talcum Powder Really Bad for You??

    Quote Originally Posted by Elianae View Post
    I mean, it is an all-natural mineral, and many people have been using it for hundreds of years with no ill effects.
    I can't help you on the talc question - but just because something is "all-natural" doesn't mean it's safe - belladonna anyone? anthrax? arsnic salts? And unless someone has made a study of it, how do we know something has "no ill effects"? Maybe a group of babies without talced butts would have lived another 5 years. Just kidding. But who knows?


  15. #15
    Advanced BHUZzer Lisa Michelle's Avatar
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    Re: Is Talcum Powder Really Bad for You??

    Quote Originally Posted by ThespiSis View Post
    Cornstarch-based powders are a good alternative.
    I know that this has been the recommended choice suggested over talc based powders for moms on babies for a number of years now.

    Lisa


  16. #16
    Advanced BHUZzer HubicRuzz's Avatar
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    Re: Is Talcum Powder Really Bad for You??

    It has been linked to cervical cancer when ladies have, um, dusted down below and the talc somehow finds its way inside and irritates the tissue.


  17. #17
    Mega BHUZzer Elianae's Avatar
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    Re: Is Talcum Powder Really Bad for You??

    Thanks for all your input guys!


  18. #18
    Mega BHUZzer Linnyg's Avatar
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    Re: Is Talcum Powder Really Bad for You??

    Remember that correlations are not proof of causation. It only suggests that there is some relation between the two. There is a study out there that found that eating oatmeal was correlated to cancer. It is only because most people who eat a lot of oatmeal also are older and live in retirement homes and are more prone to cancer diagnois as well. Oatmeal certainly does not cause cancer.

    Use your best judgement when it comes to these types of things and remember that you don't have to use it everday. I am sure that occassional usage is not going to cause any adverse health issues.


  19. #19
    Advanced BHUZzer SummerSahar's Avatar
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    Re: Is Talcum Powder Really Bad for You??

    Again, to highlight Linnyg's point, I post this tongue-in-cheek warning of the dangers of bread. It makes me giggle every time:

    1. More than 98 percent of convicted felons are bread eaters.
    2. Fully HALF of all children who grow up in bread-consuming households score below average on standardized tests.
    3. In the 18th century, when virtually all bread was baked in the home, the average life expectancy was less than 50 years; infant mortality rates were unacceptably high; many women died in childbirth; and diseases such as typhoid, yellow fever and influenza ravaged whole nations.
    4. More than 90 percent of violent crimes are committed within 24 hours of eating bread.
    5. Bread is made from a substance called "dough." It has been proven that as little as one pound of dough can be used to suffocate a mouse. The average American eats more bread than that in one month!
    6. Primitive tribal societies that have no bread exhibit a low occurrence of cancer, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's disease and osteoporosis.
    7. Bread has been proven to be addictive. Subjects deprived of bread and given only water to eat begged for bread after only two days.
    8. Bread is often a "gateway" food item, leading the user to "harder" items such as butter, jelly, peanut butter and even cold cuts.
    9. Bread has been proven to absorb water. Since the human body is more than 90 percent water, it follows that eating bread could lead to your body being taken over by this absorptive food product, turning you into a soggy, gooey bread-pudding person.
    10. Newborn babies can choke on bread.
    11. Bread is baked at temperatures as high as 400 degrees Fahrenheit! That kind of heat can kill an adult in less than one minute.
    12. Most American bread eaters are utterly unable to distinguish between significant scientific fact and meaningless statistical babbling.

    In light of these frightening statistics, we propose the following bread restrictions:

    1. No sale of bread to minors.
    2. No advertising of bread within 1000 feet of a school.
    3. A 300 percent federal tax on all bread to pay for all the societal ills we might associate with bread.
    4. No animal or human images, nor any primary colors (which may appeal to children) may be used to promote bread usage.
    5. A $4.2 zillion fine on the three biggest bread manufacturers. Please send this e-mail on to everyone you know who cares about this crucial issue.


  20. #20
    Mega BHUZzer Linnyg's Avatar
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    Re: Is Talcum Powder Really Bad for You??

    Quote Originally Posted by SummerSahar View Post
    Again, to highlight Linnyg's point, I post this tongue-in-cheek warning of the dangers of bread. It makes me giggle every time:

    1. More than 98 percent of convicted felons are bread eaters.
    2. Fully HALF of all children who grow up in bread-consuming households score below average on standardized tests.
    3. In the 18th century, when virtually all bread was baked in the home, the average life expectancy was less than 50 years; infant mortality rates were unacceptably high; many women died in childbirth; and diseases such as typhoid, yellow fever and influenza ravaged whole nations.
    4. More than 90 percent of violent crimes are committed within 24 hours of eating bread.
    5. Bread is made from a substance called "dough." It has been proven that as little as one pound of dough can be used to suffocate a mouse. The average American eats more bread than that in one month!
    6. Primitive tribal societies that have no bread exhibit a low occurrence of cancer, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's disease and osteoporosis.
    7. Bread has been proven to be addictive. Subjects deprived of bread and given only water to eat begged for bread after only two days.
    8. Bread is often a "gateway" food item, leading the user to "harder" items such as butter, jelly, peanut butter and even cold cuts.
    9. Bread has been proven to absorb water. Since the human body is more than 90 percent water, it follows that eating bread could lead to your body being taken over by this absorptive food product, turning you into a soggy, gooey bread-pudding person.
    10. Newborn babies can choke on bread.
    11. Bread is baked at temperatures as high as 400 degrees Fahrenheit! That kind of heat can kill an adult in less than one minute.
    12. Most American bread eaters are utterly unable to distinguish between significant scientific fact and meaningless statistical babbling.

    In light of these frightening statistics, we propose the following bread restrictions:

    1. No sale of bread to minors.
    2. No advertising of bread within 1000 feet of a school.
    3. A 300 percent federal tax on all bread to pay for all the societal ills we might associate with bread.
    4. No animal or human images, nor any primary colors (which may appeal to children) may be used to promote bread usage.
    5. A $4.2 zillion fine on the three biggest bread manufacturers. Please send this e-mail on to everyone you know who cares about this crucial issue.
    ..l;, ..l;, ..l;, ..l;, ..l;, ..l;,
    I love bread!


  21. #21
    I could get used to this! fayzah's Avatar
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    Re: Is Talcum Powder Really Bad for You??

    I use body powder by Dr Hauschka, 100% organic and safe. Expensive but very nice, and you just need a little of it.

    (sorry, it may seem as Im secretly promoting the label. But Im just a consumer who recomends bio dynamic stuff because it has helped me so much... :)


  22. #22
    Official BHUZzer meena_oasis's Avatar
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    Re: Is Talcum Powder Really Bad for You??

    Quote Originally Posted by nasila View Post
    I remember reading that using talc on the genitals was linked to ovarian cancer. It's also a no-no for moms due to the chance that baby will inhale it, so "Baby Powders" are supposed to be used with extreme caution.
    I have heard this too...

    Have since switched to cornstarch based just to be on the safe side. Unless it is a very yummy scent I just can't get in another form,r:;


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