By Mukesh Kumar Sinha
All Talcum Powder. Talcum Powder and Cancer hand-in-hand : What is talcum powder? Talcum powder is made from talc, a mineral made up mainly of the elements magnesium, silicon, and oxygen.
As a powder, it absorbs moisture well and helps cut down on friction, making it useful for keeping skin dry and helping to prevent rashes. It is widely used in cosmetic products such as baby powder and adult body and facial powders, as well as in a number of other consumer products.
In its natural form, some talc contains asbestos, a substance known to cause cancers in and around the lungs when inhaled.
All talcum products used in homes in the United States have been asbestos-free since the 1970s. In India, they are not.
Most concerns about a possible link between talcum powder and cancer have been focused on:
- Whether people who have long-term exposure to natural talc fibers at work, such as talc miners, are at higher risk of lung cancer from breathing them in.
- Whether women who apply talcum powder regularly in the genital area have an increased risk of ovarian cancer.
talcum powder DOES cause cancer.
When talking about whether or not talcum powder is linked to cancer, it is important to distinguish between talc that contains asbestos and talc that is asbestos-free. Talc that has asbestos is generally accepted as being able to cause cancer if it is inhaled. This type of talc is not used in modern consumer products. The evidence about asbestos-free talc, which is still widely used, is less clear.
Women who regularly use talcum powder increase their risk of ovarian cancer by 24%
- Particles applied to genital area travel into the body causing inflammation, ‘allowing cancer cells to flourish’
- 40% of women are said to regularly use talcum powder
- Using talcum powder on other parts of the body is not thought to increase ovarian cancer risk
Women who regularly use talcum powder to keep fresh raise their risk of ovarian cancer by almost a quarter, scientists said last night.
Forty per cent of women are thought to use talc daily for intimate personal hygiene.
But the researchers warned that talcum particles can travel into a woman’s body and cause inflammation, which allows cancer cells to flourish.
Women who regularly use talcum powder to keep fresh increase their risk of ovarian cancer by almost a quarter. Several previous studies have investigated the link between the powder and tumours. Some have detected links with ovarian and womb cancer but others have proved inconclusive.
In the latest probe, doctors at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, U.S., pooled data from eight separate studies to try and come up with a definitive answer.
This kind of research, known as a meta-analysis, is designed to produce stronger findings than smaller, individual studies.
The researchers analysed data from 8,525 women diagnosed with ovarian cancer and compared talcum powder use with that of 9,800 women who remained cancer-free.
The results, published in the journal Cancer Prevention Research, showed regularly applying the powder particles after bathing or showering raised the risk of an ovarian tumour by 24 per cent.
Powder particles applied to the genital area can travel into a woman’s body and trigger inflammation, which allows cancer cells to flourish.
More than 6,000 women a year are diagnosed with cancer of the ovaries.
The disease accounts for about five per cent of cancer deaths in women. It’s sometimes known as a ‘silent killer’ because for many victims symptoms only appear once it is already fairly advanced.
The main risk factors include a family history of the disease, having already had breast cancer and starting periods at a young age.
Researchers stressed the results only apply to talcum powder used in the genital area and not the rest of the body.
Some studies suggest the risks are greatest in the estimated one in ten Caucasian women with a certain genetic profile.
Women carrying a gene called glutathione S-transferase M1, or GSTM1, but lacking a gene called glutathione S-transferase T1 (GSTT1), are nearly three times as likely to develop ovarian tumours.
Talcum powder is made from a soft mineral called hydrous magnesium silicate that is found throughout the world.
It is crushed, dried and milled to produce powder used in cosmetic products by millions of people.
Some experts say it shares chemical similarities to asbestos, which can cause a deadly form of lung cancer called mesothelioma.
Tiny particles have been found to travel up through the genital tract and been found deep inside the pelvis.
They can also last inside the body for years. It is estimated that one particle of talc in the lungs, for example, would take eight years to dissolve.
Talcum powder is made from talc, a mineral made up mainly of the elements magnesium, silicon, and oxygen. As a powder, it absorbs moisture well and helps cut down on friction, making it useful for keeping skin dry and helping to prevent rashes.Nov 21, 2014
(Talc (derivedfrom Persian: تالک tālk; Arabic: تلك talk) is a mineralcomposed of hydrated magnesium silicate with the chemical formula H2Mg3(SiO3)4 or Mg3Si4O10(OH)2. In loose form, it is the widely used substance known as talcum powder. It occurs as foliated to fibrous masses, and in an exceptionally rare crystal form. It has a perfect basal cleavage, and the folia are non-elastic, although slightly flexible. It is the softest known mineral and listed as 1 on the Mohs hardness scale as such, it can be easily scratched by a fingernail. It is also sectile (can be cut with a knife). It has a specific gravity of 2.5–2.8, a clear or dusty luster, and is translucent to opaque. Talc is not soluble in water, but it is slightly soluble in dilute mineral acids. Its colour ranges from white togrey or green and it has a distinctly greasy feel. Its streak is white.
Soapstone is a metamorphic rock composed predominantly of talc.)
Safe Natural Non-Toxic Talc Substitutes
- arrowroot powder
- chickpea powder
- baking soda
- corn flour
- rice flour
- oat flour
- French green clay, finely ground
- white clay, finely ground
- powdered calendula blossoms
- powdered lavender buds
- powdered rose petals
- powdered chamomile flowers
- powdered neem herbs
Arrowroot powder, chickpea powder, baking soda, corn flour, cornstarch, rice flour, and oat flour are available at your local grocery store.
French green clay, white clay, calendula blossoms, lavender buds, rose petals, and neem herbs may be purchased at most herbal shops locally or online. You can also find them in stores where natural ingredients are sold.
How to make homemade natural body powder
You can use the natural talc substitute alone or in combination in place of talcum powder.
Once you have picked the powders that you want to use, mix them together in small bowl to blend well. Transfer to a resealable container. Use it like any normal body powder or baby powder.
You may also want to add a fragrance oil of your choice. For example, a few drops of lavender and neroli essential oils to rice flour base powder.
With these natural talc-free alternatives, you need not have to worry about the side effects commonly associated with talcum powder, and your family stay safe!