Is sunscreen hurting you?

Recent Hong Kong research has unveiled a problematic finding pertaining to sunscreen. Their research certainly caught my attention, and quite honestly, I find the research to be quite ironic.

Sunscreen is supposed to protect us from harmful UV rays, right? Well, research conducted by scientists from Hong Kong Baptist University, suggests that UV filters used in most sunscreens are polluting water systems and have the potential to harm human health.

Somewhat of a contradiction, right?

Seven common UV filter chemicals were discovered in Hong Kong ocean water, and evidence of these chemicals was further found in fish, shrimp and mussels on aqua-farms.

The risk of these chemicals travelling throughout the food chain and coming into contact with humans, which could impact fertility, was acknowledged by Dr. Kelvin Leung, research lead, in a Eurekalert article.

The scientists reference an impact upon human fertility by these chemicals based on tests performed on Zebrafish. Zebrafish have a genetic structure comparable to humans, and the polluted water they exist in caused them to develop abnormalities as well as higher mortality rates in the fish’s embryos.


HKBU study: Sunscreen chemicals harm fish embryos and could pose risk to humans

( photo)

I think it’s safe to say there’s something funky going on with the embryos on the right.

Octocrylene, benzophenone-3, and Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate are the three chemicals that were the most prominent in Hong Kong waters, all of which are UV filters.

Hawaii has already signed a bill to ban sunscreens containing chemicals that can damage coral reefs. It was signed in July and will begin in 2021.

Researchers from Hong Kong stated they plan to pursue more research regarding the impact UV filters can have on the human body.

Considering sunscreen is intended to protect you from the sun and ultimately skin cancer, it’s quite concerning to learn that it could end up causing other severe health problems from using it.

Photo credit: <a href=””>Joe Shlabotnik</a> on <a href=””></a&gt; / <a href=””&gt; CC BY-NC-SA</a>




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