Sunday Health Hack No. 16 – The (health) bomb under your armpit

Sunday Health Hack No. 16 – Throw away your deodorant, and use some organic aloe vera gel and tea tree & lemon essential oil instead.

As mentioned before, thriving for a healthy lifestyle is much more than just “food”. So today I want to tackle a different issue the first time, a serious one – cosmetics. In this Health Hack deodorants in particular (sprays, rollers, pins etc.).
In Germany, almost 80% of the population uses deodorants on a daily basis. It’s a multi-trillion industry, spending billions in advertising to convince people of its crucial necessity – if you do want to have a successful social & love life.

As the skin is our largest organ, most of what we put on our skin ends up in our bloodstream. So it’s important to know about the potentially harmful toxins in some of your cosmetic products and their effects on your health.
The most common chemical ingredients found in deodorant and antiperspirants are aluminium, parabens, triclosan, phthalates, propylene glycol and many more, disguised as “fragrances”.
Aluminium, a metal, is a common ingredient in anti-perspirants that works by “plugging” sweat ducts to stop sweating. Aluminium can cause genomic instability on the cell level, meaning it can increase our cells’ tendency to mutate, increasing the chance of tumor growth.
Parabens have been shown to mimic estrogen in the body’s cells, interfering with the way your body produces hormones.
Phthalates are plasticizers found in children’s toys, but also deodorants and lotions. They’ve been linked to asthma, ADHD, breast cancer, obesity, autism spectrum disorders, altered reproductive development, male fertility issues and many more health problems.
The abundance of health concerns associated with triclosan has led to the ban of its use in hand soaps. However, the chemical is still permitted for use in other products, like deodorants.
This short sneak peak of a much, much longer list of “poisonous” ingredients shall give you a first idea why it might not be a good idea to continue using a deodorant.

Another major problem is that your armpits are the “front gate” to your lymphatic system.
The lymphatic system has, for making it not too complicated, two existential tasks – it’s the main “garbage removal system” of your body, getting rid of all waste, left-overs and “toxins” from every cell. And it’s important for the production of immune cells such as lymphocytes, monocytes, and antibody producing cells called plasma cells.
From your armpits all the poisonous ingredients from the deodorant now enter straight into the lymphatic system without much of a barrier, wreaking havoc on your body’s need to detox, and simultaneously crippling your immune system too. Quite an explosive combination on the long run.

But there is actually an easy and also much cheaper, and I would even claim much nicer scented solution and alternative to these chemical, artificial deodorants.
Go to your health store and get some Aloe Vera gel – organic and not so liquid of course – as well as the essential oils tea tree and lemon.

Aside from being a staple in your mother’s medicine cabinet for sunburned skin, Aloe Vera has been used by different civilizations for centuries for a range of skin care, health, and medicinal purposes. It has cooling properties and is anti-inflammatory. And it is rich in antioxidants and minerals. Which now serve to the benefit of your lymphatic system.

In this case, Aloe Vera gel also functions as the “carrier” for the essential oils.
Essential oils are simply the highly concentrated liquids (oils) and other natural compounds of the plant from which they were extracted.
For example, one drop of cinnamon oil contains the same health benefits as 20 tbs of Ceylon cinnamon powder!
That’s why it is always recommended to use a “carrier”, like in this case Aloe Vera gel, when applying essential oil on the skin (for dilution).
Tea tree oil is one of the most popular and versatile essential oils that kill germs out there. While it’s mostly used for its aromatic properties, tea tree oil also has antibacterial, antiviral, anti-fungal, and anti-inflammatory qualities. Meaning, the bacteria responsible for the “stink” get eradicated (or even don’t stand a chance to reproduce).
Lemon essential oil also does have powerful antifungal and antibacterial properties, and is high in citric acid, thus making it a strong cleansing agent. And it additionally offers a long-lasting, fresh, invigorating smell.

One might argue that the initial investment for quality Aloe Vera gel and the essential oils may seem higher than a deodorant from the supermarket. But they last much, much longer, so in total it’s even a much cheaper way to smell nicely (and healthy).

Sunday Health Hack for today – Put a thumb-sized amount of Aloe Vera gel into you palm, add 1-2 drops of tea tree and lemon oil to it, commingle them in your hands, and apply it to your armpits.

Do that in the mornings and after every shower, and “Moschus brutal” was a thing of yesterday – in a much more natural, healthier, even health beneficial manner.

Extra tip (especially for men): The human armpit has a lot to offer for bacteria. It’s moist, it’s warm, and it’s usually dark. And when bacteria show up, they make a “stink”. That’s because these bacteria produce smelly compounds, transforming the armpit from a neutral oasis to the mothership of body odour. And these bacteria especially love it “hairy”. The more the merrier.
So once in a while, please take your beard trimmer and cut back on your armpit outback as well.  

Love & balm, Yours  Andreas

Sunday Quote
You can give a person knowledge, but you can’t make them think. Some people just want to remain ignorant, only because the truth requires change.

Sunday Music
Freeing us from the tight grip of the gigantic cosmetic industry seems overwhelming but there is always a small first step …