The Myths of Mineral Oil Revealed!

What really prompted me to change the tone of my e-zine was that I watched Oprah several weeks ago and the show was about things we take for granted but can harm or kill us. The show opened with an 18 month old baby who died from baby oil. Oprah never showed the name of the company but as you and I know, what company has the baby market. The baby opened the bottle and the oil ended up all over the him. The father immediately bathed the baby; however, that wasn’t enough. The baby oil was mineral oil. The family was repeatedly told by their doctor that it was the baby’s asthma and continually treated for that but to no avail. The mother finally took the baby to children’s hospital and the doctor treated the baby for mineral oil inhalation. Mineral oil has hydrocarbons and that was trapped in the baby’s lungs and he died from aspiration. The good news as a result of the mother’s loss, she managed to change legislation and forced the manufactures to make the bottles tamper resistant. The bad news was, its still mineral oil!!

I was on my high horse two years ago when I was doing a market research project for school and discovered baby oil was mineral oil. Throughout the above story, Oprah kept asking “did you know that?” I yelled at the TV that I did. I just didn’t know how to get it out to the public at that time.

You can be assured Awakening Spirit does NOT use harmful ingredients in any of its products. We use the finest ingredients and therapeutic grade essential oils. You can be assured that you won’t have any reactions unless you are allergic to an ingredient. And, that is your responsibility.

I don’t claim to know everything but it is our responsibility to educate ourselves about the law,  products, food, financial issues, etc. Aren’t you tired of being sold a bill of goods? Aren’t you tired of blaming everyone else for what’s wrong in the world?

Did you know cancer is at an all time high? It seems like everyone knows someone who has some form of cancer. Look at what you eat, drink, put on your body and clean with. It all has chemicals that harm the body.

Here is what I found about the effects of mineral oil. I have not changed any of the information.

Material Safety Data Sheet for nujol (Mineral Oil)

Toxicology – may be harmful by inhalation, ingestion and through skin absorption. Irritant.

Personal Protection – safety glasses, suitable ventilation.

The British Institute for Allergy & Environmental Therapy: Mineral Oil Petroleum Derivative on Beauty Products by Kit Anderson

Mineral oil (classed as a petrochemical pollutant and xenohormone) can have negative effects on hormones and the skin’s ability to breathe, attract moisture and detoxify. It can also slow down cell renewal and be the second (after the sun) most likely cause of premature ageing. In fact sun screens produced from mineral oil may promote skin cancer as well as colon and breast cancer. However, no cosmetic manufacturers put health warnings on their products and in the US, the FDA does not require this information to be on packaging.

Mineral oil is just one of the harmful ingredients that are used in products found in the home – bubble bath, bodywash, shampoo, soap, facial cleanser and detergents. Others include: SD40 alcohol, talc, DEA, MEA and TEA (foaming agents), artificial fragrances, artificial colour pigments, polyethylene glycol and triclosan.

Of the 7000 odd ingredients used on the skin, the author states that only five or six have been tested for long-term safety and no synergistic testing has been done. Among these ingredients are 125 suspected carcinogens, 20 that cause adverse nervous reactions and 25 that are connected to birth defects.


Mineral oil is obtained from petroleum refining.

Warnings and side effects reported in medical literature: Mineral oil is not to be taken repeatedly for a long period of time. Mineral oil may be absorbed systemically and cause a foreign body reaction in lymphoid tissue. Gradual build up in body tissues may create additional problems and may interfere with the absorption of certain food nutrients and (fat soluable) vitamins A, D, E and K. Not used during pregnancy because it may interfere with the mothers’ absorption of nutrients and vitamins and may cause severe bleeding in a newborn infant. A form of pneumonia may be caused by the inhalation of droplets into the lungs. Large doses may cause some leakage from the rectum.

Is Mineral Oil a Safe Lubricant?

Mineral oil does not make a good lubricant. Anything with oil in it, such as petroleum jelly, baby oil, bath oil, and hand lotion, massage oil, etc. are all rather unsafe because they block pores and do not allow the skin to breath [sic] and trap bacteria which can then multiply, which may lead to infections. Oils are also bad for condoms and toys since they deteriorate break down latex. Some women seem to be able to get away with using very pure oils, such as olive or almond oils if they are not using toys or latex, but many of us will end up with infections as a result.

Glycerin is a type of sugar which may lead to yeast infections for some women who chronically get these infections. Glycerin cal so contribute to the lubricants feeling sticky of tacky when the water in them begins to evaporate.

From the Worker Health and Safety Issue Brief Mineral Oil Mist – Proposed change in ACGIH TLV-TWA and Carcinogenicity Status


By definition in the documentation for these regulatory/authoritative bodies, mineral oils and their mists include: white mineral oil (considered food-grade), paraffin oil, cutting oil, hydraulic oil, transformer oil, lubricating oil, and others. Mineral oils are a component of metalworking and machining fluids.


Acute and chronic exposure to mineral oil mists is regulated in the United States by an OSHA permissible exposure limit (PEL) of 5 mg/m3 as an 8-hour time-weighted average (TWA) concentration. A similar approach has been taken in Canadian jurisdictions. Exposure to mineral oil mist can occur through inhalation, ingestion, and eye or skin contact. Additionally, both the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NOSH) and the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) have established a 5 mg/m3 based on the risk of respiratory effects.

ACGIH has coupled a review of the current scientific literature on mineral oils, including acute, chronic and carcinogenicity animal and human studies. On the weight of the evidence of these studies, ACGIH proposed for 2001, to (1) lower the TLV-TWA of mineral oil mists to 0.2 mg/m3, and (2) to assign an A2, Suspected Human Carcinogen designation to mineral oil mists. The proposed changes will be published in the 2002 ACGIH-TLV book, with the new TLV and A2 Human Carcinogen status to become final in 2003.

What you need to know:

If you use mineral oils in any applications in your operations, and this becomes an established ACGIH-TLV limit, in the United States you will be subject to the provisions of the OSHA hazard Communication Standard, and in Canada, you will be subject to the provision of WHMIS under the Hazardous Products Act. The MSDS must disclose all “health hazards” posed by a chemical and the product label must include all appropriate hazard warnings. In the United States, ACGIH carcinogenicity classifications do not make the chemical a listed carcinogen, but it could be deemed to pose a carcinogenicity hazard based on the result of scientific studies. . . . Some plastics applications associated with potential generation of oil mists include metalworking and mold making, mist lubrication, mold release agents, oil-lubricating tools and printing inks.

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