In an episode for the documentary series “Trust me I’m a doctor”, a BBC team of doctors, along with Professor Alastair Lewis of the National Centre for Atmospheric Science at the University of York, investigated indoor air quality in six homes in York, by measuring concentrations of volatile organic compounds.
It was found that limonene, a citrus-based hydrocarbon commonly used as a fragrance in air freshener was presented at relatively high concentrations in indoor air in three of the homes tested and this corresponded to the amount of household products and scented candles they use.
Although not thought to be carcinogenic itself, limonene reacts with ozone to form formaldehyde, a known human carcinogen, which may cause breast cancer at high concentrations following occupational exposure and may increase breast cancer at low, environmentally relevant concentrations.
Breast Cancer UK suggest the best way to reduce exposure to formaldehyde and other indoor pollutants is to avoid or minimise the use of air fresheners and cosmetics containing fragrance.
Read the full article at Breast Cancer UK:
For more suggestions on how to reduce your risk of breast cancer, see the Reduce Your Risk area of the site: