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Cancer and African Americans

By: Associated Press Article
Dated: Saturday, 02/10/2007

How Can We Avoid Being The Next Victim?

By Makeisha Lee, Health and Nutrition Consultant

According to surveys conducted by health professionals who work with the National Black Leadership Initiative on Cancer (sponsored by the Morehouse School of Medicine and the National Cancer Institute), many African Americans are not even aware of the major warning signs of cancer, thus making them more likely to die from it.
In addition to this, they are less likely to participate in screening programs capable of detecting early curable cancers. For instance, fewer black women - as compared with white women - have an annual pap smear, and as a result more black women die of cervical cancer than whites.
So we know the statistics in respects to how cancer disproportionately affects our community, but what can we do to avoid it in the first place? Here's one very important precautionary measure to take: Many of us are wholly unaware that there are, in fact, cancer inducing toxins right in our homes found in common products we use daily. Certain cosmetics, soaps, shampoos, bubble baths, lotions, dishwashing detergent and more contain ingredients that are cancer-causing. An example of one such ingredient is DEA or diethanolamine which is found in over 600 home and personal care products. It is only one of an estimated 125 ingredients proven to cause cancer.
Dr. Samuel Epstein, author of The Safe Shopper's Bible, and the founder of the American Coalition to Prevent Cancer, is considered to be the world's leading authority on toxicology. He believes that DEA categorically causes cancer.
Consider this: propylene glycol is the main ingredient in antifreeze, but if you were to go thru your cabinets and look at your toothpaste, underarm deodorant, shampoo, conditioner, lotions, soaps, there you may find propylene glycol and another ingredient called sodium lauryl sulfate. You will find it in baby wipes which is why children are getting cancer at a higher rate than ever before.
In addition to causing cancer, propylene glycol also causes dermatitis, kidney damage and liver abnormalities. The major factor is that it doesn't leave your body; it just stays in the tissues and continues to build up, causing more and more damage down the road.
Sodium lauryl sulfate has the same effect on staying in the body. Not only that, it can change the genetic structure of the cell, therefore inducing mutations of the cells. This is a toxic substance that irritates the skin, damages the immune system, and impairs ability for hair to grow. Yet, you find it in foods you eat, lotions, soaps and de-odorants, etc.
This is why we are sick at astounding rates! We are putting more poisons in our body than ever before in history. We must avoid these chemicals as much as possible. These problems will come as a result of continuously applying these on our skin, and being constantly absorbed into our bodies. We have to think of the long term with a focus on prevention of cancer and other serious health conditions.
So if you want to be healthy and avoid being the next person with some form of cancer, you must clean these toxins from your body and be more conscious of purchasing products that do not contain harmful chemicals. Read your labels as there are a variety of products sold in health food stores that have no lauryl sulfates.
Remember the skin is the largest organ of the body, and you are what you eat!

Tuesday, 02/20/2007
Volume No.: 21
Issue: 5