As a massage therapist, I spend a great deal of my time in close proximity to skin. The care of skin is pretty important to me. I want to let you all in on some information about mineral oil.
Mineral oil is a common ingredient in many household products. It is found in lotions, soaps, cosmetics and motor oil. Mineral oil is a clear, liquid oil with no sent and will not spoil. The word “mineral” makes this product sound like a nutrient, but in fact it is produced as a by-product of the distillation of gasoline from crude oil. Mineral oil is the leftover liquid, and because it is abundant, it is very inexpensive. In fact, it is more expensive to dispose of mineral oil, than to purchase it.
Remember the skin is the largest organ in the body and the only protective barrier you have. The importance of your skin’s health is immeasurable.
The problem is that mineral oil is foreign to the human body and has many harmful effects:
- Mineral oil acts as a thin plastic layer on the skin.
- It is difficult to absorb and clogs the pores, which slows the skin’s ability to eliminate toxins.
- Once the oil is absorbed, it is broken down by the liver and passes through the intestinal tract. When the oil is present in the intestinal tract, it will absorb all of the fat-soluable vitamins found there. It is essentially stealing important vitamins from the body, which the body will not be able to replace. This can eventually lead to nutritional deficiencies.
- Studies have also shown forms of pneumonia caused by mineral oil decreasing lung function, known as lipoid pneumonia. Because of these dangers, the medical community has condemned the use of mineral oil taken orally or as an ingredient in medications.
In my private massage practice, I have started using a lotion from all natural ingredients. It wont clog my client’s pores or leave them feeling greasy after they leave my office.
Here are some other helpful links about mineral oil:
Material safety Data Sheet from JT Baker http://www.jtbaker.com/msds/englishhtml/m7700. htm
Call For Change To Mineral Oil Label http://www.personalmd.com/news/a1998122802.shtml
Thanks for reading, PJ Harris, LMP. http://www.pjharris.com/