If you use antibacterial soap, toothpaste or cosmetic products containing a germicide called triclosan, it’s time to switch to another brand. This chemical, frequently absorbed by the body, increases your risk of developing allergies.
A study in Norway called the Norwegian Environment and Childhood Asthma Study shows that kids who are exposed to triclosan have increased levels of Immunoglobulin E (IgE), an immune component linked to allergies. They also more often suffer from stuffy noses and hay fever.
Research shows that four of five children in the U.S. possess detectable levels of triclosan.
According to the scientists, triclosan can change the bacterial population on the skin, in the mouth and in the intestines. By killing off good (probiotic) bacteria, triclosan disrupts immunity. Therefore, increased use of triclosan and antibacterial products has generally been associated with an increased incidence of allergies.