Myth or Reality: Sunscreen is giving you cancer? Coconut Oil is Poison? Charcoal is worse?

May 28, 2019

There are a lot of content creators on the internet now. Their paychecks depend on the number of people who clicks on their links (Sweet and Bitter Blog is Ad-Free). As a result, sans a regulating authority, the internet is full of click baits because they are forwarded most all over social media. 

However, we are the educated lot. So, let us dip deep. Here are my two cents:

Is Sunscreen giving you cancer? Now, you might have read a few articles about how sunscreens are harmful, and sunscreen can give you cancer. While most of them were just click bait, it is partly true. In the name of sunscreen, a lot of random things are sold. As per studies, only 4% are proper sunscreen. Buy yours only from a reputed skincare brand. Also, as I always request you - read the labels. They are more important than which celebrity is endorsing it or how many incense sticks are burning in the store to portray a natural, holistic, and clean profile. Physical sunscreen is relatively safer than chemical ones. There are a few ingredients that you should keep away from. The one on the top of the list is Oxybenzone, which can get into your bloodstream and mimic as your hormones. Other potentially harmful ones are Octinoxate (Octyl methoxycinnamate), Homosalate, and Octocrylene. 

Read more on the EWG website

There has not been much study on this topic, but it is better to be safe than sorry. However, yes, read more on this. Do not just follow the headline but also dig deep. 

Is Coconut Oil Poison? Remember last year, when a Harvard professor said Coconut oil is pure poison. I was moved when I heard that. How can a native oil, something used by generations by people be evil? If coconut oil were bad, the population of Kerala would have disappeared by now. Eliminated. However, they are the healthiest lot in the country! This is not like saying that one person who smoked since his teenage years lived until 90s; never got cancer means that smoking cannot cause cancer. Here I am talking about an entire community whole life starts with coconut oil and ends with it. Then I read more.

The professor said so because they had doubts that it could be harmful than lard. No one in India uses lard! In India, we are already using better oils than them. Plus, we get a far better variant of coconut oil in India. It was not even applicable to us! This was just a short term study by an adjust professor on the American people.

Moreover, I could not even find a detailed report anywhere. The number of people in the studies or exactly how long the survey was, or what were the exact results? I could not find it. American Heart Association has added it to avoid list. But, please remember that they even said margarine was supposed to be better than butter in the 70s until they found transfat which was more deadly. 

In my opinion, stick your native oils. Stick to oils produced naturally in your region. Stick to oils that are made from nuts and seeds and are not processed. In my home, we use mustard oil for curries, ghee for parathas and pulao, rice barn for rest. I used olive oil for pasta (never cooked more than once in three weeks), and I am thinking of using coconut oil when cooking south Indian food. 

Here are two articles that I found interesting and I think you should give a read 

Is Charcoal worse? There is another latest one mention Charcoal is bad. I read more and found that it referred to regular everyday use. Who in the right mind uses charcoal toothpaste or charcoal facemask every day? I need to explore more on this and will update it here. But I would like to share a story first. Indians used to use charcoal and neem for brushing. Colgate comes to India and tells us - No no! Charcoal is bad, here is modern toothpaste. Cut to 2017: here is our toothpaste with neem and charcoal. 

If you are using charcoal in your face pack, I will suggest that you continue doing so. Activated charcoal is a great ingredient. 

Any fun news you read lately?



  1. Omg.. We use coconut oil from so many generations, almost use it for cooking to haircare..

    1. I know! I have seen it first hand in Kerala. Food tastes soooo yummy in coconut oil. I am yet to use it for cooking but I have it my wishlist. Which brand do you use for cooking? Any favorites?

    2. Actually we have coconut trees at my place, so we dry and give the dried coconuts to mills and get coconut oil for our use.


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