October's Must-Have Products From Our Doctors: Hand Sanitizers

by
Dr. Ariel Thorpe

Our studio follows a stringent and scientifically-scrutinized protocol for maintaining the health of our team and clients. The uptick in alcohol hand sanitizer usage over the past 18 months has been significant. But what's the impact of hyper-sanitization on our health? And what makes a sanitizer effective? You, too, have likely used more hand sanitizer of late. Many alcohol hand sanitizers are filled with artificial fragrances, which can disrupt our hormones. Some alcohol hand sanitizers have preservatives, which can build up in our bodies over time, and cause us to slowly turn into human salami, preserved for long term shelf life. While it may be rather innocuous to consume a few of these chemicals over the course of your life, it's the compound effect that really makes an impact on our health. Think about it this way: one cigarette won't give you cancer but years of smoking likely will. So, we must be diligent with all of the ingredients we put in and on our bodies. Our doctors, who have used plenty of alcohol hand sanitizer over the past 18 months share their favorites:

Dr. Eleanor loves silver as an antimicrobial and antifungal. Nanoparticle silver also works as antiviral. What makes a sanitizer effective? Nanoparticle silver is small enough to penetrate our cells and fight back against infections even at the very start of transmission. Colloidal silver and nanoparticle silver are suspended in water and available online. A mix of silver and a few drops of essential oils in a spray bottle makes for a natural hand sanitizer with natural fragrance. Dr. El's favorite essential oils include lavender for its relaxing and additional antimicrobial properties. She also loves rosemary for its energizing scent. Young Living brand is high quality and has great blends for purification that include lemongrass scent, which is a client favorite at Atlas.

Dr. Ariel makes an alcohol hand sanitizer out of two parts alcohol and one part aloe vera gel. Dr. Ariel recommends isopropyl alcohol, either 75% or 90%, from a local pharmacy and organic aloe vera gel that contains as few preservatives as possible. A good option is Sky Organics available on iHerb. Alcohol, the original antiseptic, used for hundreds of years, can be drying on the skin, so the aloe soothes and rehydrates. Just as with the silver hand sanitizer, a few drops of essential oils can be added to introduce a pleasant, natural smell. Dr. Ariel's go-to is organic lemongrass from Pranarom, also available on iHerb.

Despite these on the go options, soap, hot water, and gentle abrasion (rubbing your hands and fingers together) is still the best option. That's right: plain old soap and water is better than all the antimicrobial and antiviral additives put into soaps and hand sanitizers.

While adding a moisturizing ingredient like aloe can help the skin, Dr. Damian prefers an inside-out approach to maintaining healthy, lubricated skin. He recommends supplementing with omega 3 oils to create plump, hydrated cells that can withstand the stress of many different alcohol hand sanitizers. He likes Solgar Omega-3, EPA & DHA, Triple Strength, 950mg available on iHerb.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6264685/

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26195090/

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32229145/

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