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Triclosan May Impair Muscle Function

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Triclosan May Impair Muscle Function

We already know that triclosan – the antibacterial added to many soaps, deodorants and hand sanitizers – is bad for public health and for the environment, but a new study shows that it might also impair muscle function.

According to research coming out of the University of California and the University of Colorado, animals exposed to triclosan experience problems with muscle activity. Often in studies like this, the animals are exposed to much higher amounts of a chemical than humans normally encounter, but in these studies researchers approximated the amount of triclosan that people would encounter in our day to day. Mice in one such study had decreased muscle contractions, including in their hearts.

Related Reading: The Dangers of Triclosan and How to Avoid It

Study co-author Nipavan Chiamvimonvat, professor of cardiovascular medicine at UC Davis said:

The effects of triclosan on cardiac function were really dramatic. Although triclosan is not regulated as a drug, this compound acts like a potent cardiac depressant in our models.

There needs to be more research before scientists can say for certain that triclosan could impair muscle function in humans, but in the meantime, keeping it out of your home is the best way to minimize your exposure. You can find triclosan in many cosmetics – from soap to toothpaste – so careful label-reading is your friend.

Triclosan has quite a few negative effects on our environment, but this research highlights an unexpected impact. Read about how muscle impairment could damage fragile ecosystems on the next page.

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Becky Striepe

Becky Striepe is a freelance writer and vegan crafter living in Atlanta, Georgia. Her life’s mission is to make green crafting and vegan food accessible to everyone! Like this article? You can follow Becky on Twitter or find her on Facebook!


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11:48AM PST on Feb 7, 2013

Don´t use antibacterial soap, thanks for posting!

9:29PM PDT on Sep 4, 2012

i've avoided anti-bacterial handsoap for years now...

9:41AM PDT on Sep 1, 2012

I had no idea.

9:09AM PDT on Aug 26, 2012

I had no idea...Thx for the info...especially going to pass it on to family members with small children!

12:11PM PDT on Aug 22, 2012

Yep, avoid it whenever I can - I have never liked using the chemically antibacterial stuff on my skin or in my home. If I really need to, I grab some tea tree oil or something.

10:38AM PDT on Aug 20, 2012

The use of anti-bacterial soap should remain a seldom used product.

Do any of you remember Hexachlorophene, it was used in surgical soaps. it often contained small trace amounts of Dioxin. Exposure to such, results in Chloracne or worse, resulting in facial disfigurement, a life threatening menace.

So potentially dangerous that the US banned its use for everyone but professional use.

I was sent to Seveso, Italy, after the "accident", in which TCP was released into the atmosphere, upon a population who unwittingly remained and in the end, suffered greatly.
The greater problem was that, when TCP is heated beyond 240F (115.5 C), Dioxin is produced.

Trichlorophenol (TCP), the herbicide 2,4,5-T, often referred to as Agent Orange, is one of the most teratogenic chemicals known to man. America dumped 20,000,000 US gallons of it on the Vietnamese people. Just this week, American teams began attempting to clean up the mess or at least, try to mitigate its effect on the human population. A bit late, don't you think?

In Seveso and all around for thirty miles, it was sight out of Dante's Inferno, thousands of dead birds, cows, horses, everything for miles...either dead or dying. It was a sight, that I find, as bad as war itself. It is a sight that remains with me today and haunts me so.
Perhaps, this why I have become such a mad dog environmentalist, that and Rachel Carson's book, Silent Spring.

This was an industrial "accident" that would have sent Rachel Carson ru

4:20AM PDT on Aug 19, 2012

But yes, I do try to avoid it..............

4:18AM PDT on Aug 19, 2012

Everything and anything is dangerous......., even life. You might die of it some day........

10:04AM PDT on Aug 18, 2012

Now, I know not to use those anti-bacterial soaps.

10:04AM PDT on Aug 18, 2012

Now, I know not to use those anti-bacterial soaps.

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