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Question from Judy

I am trying to make up my mind about the different kinds of aluminum free deodorants on the market. Some say they are aluminum free when, in fact, they do contain potassium alum. Is this safe to use or is it, in fact, just another aluminum product worded differently? Thank you…

Debra’s Answer

When an antiperspirant claims to be “aluminum-free,” they are saying it does not contain aluminum chlorohydrate, aluminum chloride, aluminum hydroxybromide or aluminum zirconium—all forms of aluminum commonly used in antiperspirants and deodorants. To stop the flow of sweat to your skin’s surface, the aluminum plugs sweat ducts in the top layer of your skin stopping the the natural flow of sweat to your skin’s surface.

This aluminum can also be absorbed into your body where it can then build up as part of your body burden. Alzheimer’s disease and cancer are two illnesses known to be associated with aluminum exposure.

The aluminum in crystal deodorant stones is a different type of aluminum, called alum. The most common form is potassium alum, also known as potassium aluminum sulfate.

Potassium alum (and other alums) is a natural mineral salt made up of molecules that are too large to be absorbed by your skin. They form a protective layer on your skin that inhibits the growth of odor-causing bacteria. While this is a better alternative, it is not completely aluminum-free.

I haven’t used antiperspirant of any kind for decades. More than thirty years ago I started using baking soda as a deodorant, but have given up even that. Sweat is necessary for your body to detox (see Toxic Free Nutrition:Is Your Antiperspirant Preventing Your Body From Detoxing?) and a health body has a lovely smell, not a foul odor.

Antiperspirants and deodorants are an industrial consumer invention, not found in nature.

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