Triclosan (Trichlorocarbanilide, TCC) is an antibacterial and anti-fungal substance used in soaps and deodorant which has come under new scrutiny by the US Food and Drug Administration for three reasons:
- Other studies question whether TCC is one of the ingredients that makes bacteria resistant to antibiotics, encouraging the growth of ‘superbugs’.
- Studies on animals have shown that TCC artificially amplifies sex hormones (estrogen and testosterone), which often leads to breast and prostate cancer. (Animal studies don’t always predict human studies.)
- Most of these products get washed down the drain and spread through the environment, potentially disrupting aquatic ecosystems.
For some consumer products, TCC provides a legitimate benefit. But for others, the FDA has found no evidence that TCC provides any benefit over plain old soap and water.