Mainstream Moisturizers and Tumors


Breaking news which I saw on my Facebook feed, which actually broke back in 2008: Moisturizers cause cancer in mice.  Yes, the moisturizers we all know and presumably trust, the mainstream brands that keep us from shriveling up like raisins and moulting, do not appear to offer mice any health benefits. Scientists slathered the rodents with copious amounts of Eucerin and Vanicream daily for 17 weeks with disastrous results.  These poor mice developed 69% more tumors than mice not “hydrated” with the moisturizers.  There are three aspects to the study, that were glossed over by the outraged anti-moisturizer activists who published a Portlandia type article in some off the grid journal devoted to convincing readers that we modern day humans are doomed.  One, unlike humans, mice don’t need moisturizers.  Though I am not a scientist and do not claim to have any knowledge of science except that climate change and evolution are real, common sense would dictate that rodents produce natural skin oils that render creams redundant.  Two, Eucerin and the like are not made for mice.  Three, the mice that developed tumors were already at risk for cancers because the researchers had been subjecting them to high amounts of ultraviolet rays, if I understood the study correctly – the mice subjects were known as UVB-pretreated high-risk mice.

I am not defending the petroleum industry, but I am suggesting that extrapolating results of tests on mice to humans is dubious. The amount of lotion those suffering rodents must have received each day would probably have been the human equivalent to 32 ounces rubbed all over our bodies daily, head to toe, over a lifetime. You’d likely drown in the stuff before you developed a tumor, and even if you were a good swimmer, you’d probably end up dying of cancer eventually anyway, as many of us unfortunately will.  The fact remains, cancer is the second leading cause of death in the United States and no doubt the leading cause of death among laboratory rats. A little dab of Eucerin or Neutrogena is not likely to do us in. And because I secretly read this off the grid journal and have drawn my own conclusions,  I believe that what we should be more worried about are pesticides, GMOs, bourbon because its made with GMO corn, breakfast cereal, homogenized milk, preservatives, meat of any kind, soda, flouride in toothpaste and drinking water, energy drinks, mercury from light bulbs (and all that mercury us older folks played with when the family thermometer broke), white bread, the sun, sunscreen, air pollution, climate change, bedding material, rugs, mosquitoes, ticks, rabid raccoons, asbestos, lead paint, air freshner, laminate floors, bug spray, bug propellant, pesticides, nuclear waste, bottled water and so on.  As they say in New Hampshire, “Live Free and Die anyway or something like that.

Don’t Drink 2,083 Cans of Diet Soda a Day

Coca Cola Zero

Coca Cola Zero (Photo credit: xcaballe)

Here’s the thing:  diet soda is bad for you, really bad for you.  At least that’s the suspicion.  There hasn’t been any study to conclusively link diet soda consumption to cancer in humans. Even the latest published study trying to find one concluded that some of their findings about the ill effects of artificial sweeteners could have been due to chance.  Nonetheless, the jury is out.

Confession:  I like diet soda – I do.  I am particularly fond of Coke Zero.  They’ve put something in it that I crave – I don’t know what it is, maybe it’s the zero, or the aspartame and its phenylalanine content, which apparently I am able to metabolize unlike some people with a rare genetic disease called PKU.  These folks should stay a mile away from the stuff.

Flashback:  In a high school debate round, I once argued that there was no reason for the government to regulate artificial sweeteners despite the fact that they caused cancer in laboratory rats.   I cited evidence that showed the rats were injected with the human equivalent of something like 700 cans of diet soda a day for a lifetime.  I imagine the study I referenced was looking at saccharine.  What ever happened to saccharine anyway?  I kind of miss it!  A more recent study concluded that with aspartame, the risk range for humans is between 8 and 2,083 cans a day.

I know I should just drink water all day, but that decaffeinated lifestyle is a little too stringent for me.  I figure as long as I don’t drink 2,083 cans of Coke Zero a day, I’ll be ok… I think.