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“Hey there, wanna smell my armpit?”

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I’ve asked this question to many friends and family members and their reactions are always a delight to watch. Surprised, confused, disgusted – I’ve seen it all! And I know you’re probably thinking that’s a strange question to ask, but when you’ve just begun using food to curb your armpit odour, it seems appropriate.

Popular for their immune supporting, antibacterial, and antiviral properties, lemons can now boast one more amazing ability: They can replace your deodorant.

Dangers of Common Deodorants

“Why would I want to replace my deodorant?” I asked when one of my coworkers here at CE suggested I ditch the stick I was using. I soon learned that conventional deodorants are filled with toxins like parabens (preservatives), formaldehyde, and aluminum. He showed me research that reveals how using these products for prolonged periods so near to our breasts poses many dangers, including creating estrogen-like (hormonal) effects.

Estrogen has the ability to promote the growth of breast cancer cells, so some scientists have suggested that the aluminum-based compounds in antiperspirants may contribute to the development of breast cancer.


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The belief that parabens build up in breast tissue was supported by a 2004 study, which found parabens in 18 of 20 samples of tissue from human breast tumours. However, this study did not prove that parabens alone cause breast tumours. Parabens can be found in foods, hygiene products, cosmetics, and pharmaceuticals, making label reading an essential practice for good health.

Here is a handy website that will tell you exactly what ingredients are in specific products before you choose to buy them. Pro Tip: Parabens are usually easy to identify by name, such as methylparaben, propylparaben, butylparaben, or benzylparaben.

The Lemon Alternative

Lemon, on the other hand, is 100% natural and rich in vitamins and minerals like pectin, bioflavonoids, vitamin C, magnesium, calcium, and citric acid. I’ve actually used lemon in the past to lighten dark spots on my skin. Because it is also antibacterial, this natural deodorant leaves me lemony fresh. It’s not an antiperspirant, however, meaning it’s not going to stop you from sweating, but if you pause for just a moment and actually think about sweating — an important, natural, and healthy mechanism of the body — it seems strange that we ever got it into our heads that we should prevent our bodies from doing it.

To use lemon as a deodorant, simply cut a slice of lemon and gently rub it on your armpit. If you shave your pits, I would advise against doing this immediately after, as it could be painful and cause irritation. Otherwise, apply in the morning and you should be good for the rest of the day.

Because lemons have pretty high concentrations of potassium and magnesium and both these minerals have antibacterial properties, lemon can balance pH levels when applied to the skin. The citric acid, on the other hand, helps curb any odour, leaving you smelling lemony fresh.

(But please note: If you have been using conventional deodorant for many years, it may take your body time to adjust and detox. Your armpit pores have been blocked for years and there will be a lot of buildup that needs to be flushed out before you begin sweating normally again. You may have to deal with a bit of stink at first! Be patient, and trust in your body’s ability to heal.)

Give it go. Lemon deodorant is an all-natural and inexpensive alternative to store bought deodorants. Will you make the switch? Let me know what your experience is like with this traditional hygiene technique at

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