The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is demanding scientific proof from the makers of anti-bacterial soap that their products are any more effective at at preventing illness than washing hands with plain soap and water. In ordeer for anti-bacterial soaps and body washes to be considered recognized as effective would require the manufacturers to conduct clinical trials demonstrating that their products are more effective than plain soap and water.
Presently, there are more than 2,000 anti-bacterial hand soaps and body washes currently available for consumers but no scientific evidence showing these products are any better than soap and water. In addition, some of the ingredients found in the soap have known risks, including triclosan which, when used daily can affect estrogen, testosterone and thyroid hormones.
Researchers have also found that triclosan is a known endocrine distruptor.U.S. scientists agree that the FDA’s review is overdue. The Endocrine Society, a group of doctors and scientists who specialize in the hormone system, flagged triclosan four years ago as an ingredient that alters levels of thyroid hormones and reproductive hormones like testosterone and estrogen.