Prevention Coalition Press
Release, July, 2002
THEY MAKE YOU SMELL, FEEL, AND LOOK GOOD BUT CAN COSMETICS INCREASE YOUR RISK OF CANCER?
Tough standards are essential for phasing out diethanolamine
(DEA) from cosmetics and toiletries.
In a petition to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
previously released, the Cancer Prevention Coalition (CPC) urged
the labeling or phasing out of DEA in cosmetic products. DEA is a
precursor of nitrosodiethanolamine (NDEA), a proven carcinogen as
recognized by four Federal agencies and institutions and the World
Health Organization. The proposed label would read, "Caution -
This product may contain N-nitrosodiethanolamine, a known cancer-
DEA-based detergents are widely used in shampoos, lotions
and creams. Since 1976, workers exposed to NDEA in metal working
fluids, at levels similar to those in cosmetics, have been warned
of cancer risks and steps are taken to protect them.
Aubrey Hampton, founder of Aubrey Organics, noted that DEA
is not an essential ingredient in hair and skin care products.
There are natural, safe and effective alternatives to DEA that
pose no financial hardship for the manufacturer or the consumer"
In 1979, the FDA urged the cosmetics industry to
take "immediate action to eliminate" NDEA in cosmetics. However,
the FDA has taken no subsequent action while industry remains
unresponsive. In striking contrast, the EEC has sharply reduced
permissible uses of DEA. German cosmetic industry has also
resolved this problem by phasing out DEA detergents, thereby
preventing the formation of NDEA
Dr. William Lijinksy, leading international nitrosamine
researcher, emphasized, 'The continued use of DEA is unacceptable
especially in view of the overwhelming scientific evidence of its
cancer risks and the availability of safe alternatives."
Samuel S. Epstein, M.D., professor of environmental and
occupational medicine at the University of Illinois School of
Public Health and chairman of the Cancer Prevention Coalition said
that, "Faced with escalating cancer rates, the FDA and other
health agencies should take overdue action to reduce avoidable
exposures to carcinogens. NDEA in cosmetics, used by many million
consumers for many decades, is a prime example of such an
Los Angeles Cancer Prevention Coalition Director
Shelley Kramer, 310 457
My favorite company -safe products