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Nanoparticles are particles less than 100 nanometers (nm) in size. To put that into perspective, one hair on your head is 80,000nm thick.
Titanium dioxide (TiO2) and zinc oxide (ZnO) are used for UVA and UVB protection in lotions and sunscreens. Sunscreen makers are now using nanoparticle versions of both because they make sunscreen lotion that used to be white clear and supposedly improve its UV protection.
But, nanosize particles of TiO2 and ZnO can cause much more damage to your body than larger particles. They can go where larger particles can’t.
Nanoparticles in products you put on your skin can be absorbed into your body. They can also be inhaled if you use spray type sunscreens. This ability is increased by the skin penetration enhancers in sunscreens and if you apply these products to broken skin.
The scariest thing about this is that, unlike larger particles, nanoparticles can easily enter cells, tissues and organs like your brain, heart, kidneys and commonly the liver and spleen. Once in your body they can accumulate and cause damage in the lungs, brain, liver, spleen, and bones.
They also affect male and female fertility and thyroid function and can
stimulate inflammatory and immune system responses. To avoid exposure to the nanoparticles in sunscreen try some of the nano-free products listed below.