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Dr. Yvonne Burkart

TMHS 776: Hidden Toxins in Your Deodorant, Toilet Paper, & Feminine Care Products – with Dr. Yvonne Burkart

There are thousands of products on the shelves of your drugstore and grocery store shelves that are marketed to consumers as safe. From deodorant and shampoo to makeup and perfume, most Americans are utilizing multiple personal care products every day. Sadly, most conventional personal care products are loaded with chemicals, including fragrances, phthalates, and parabens.

Exposure to chemicals in personal care products can pose a serious risk to human health in multiple ways –including increased allergies, harm to the reproductive system, and even risk for cancer. Today’s guest, Dr. Yvonne Burkart is a toxicologist who is dedicated to empowering folks with the information they need to make more informed decisions about their products and their health.

On this episode of The Model Health Show, Dr. Burkhart is back to dive into the chemicals that are in your personal care products. We’re going to discuss the major problems with conventional deodorants, and how to choose a better option. You’ll learn about the issues with fragrances in feminine care products, and what to look for in a better toilet paper. No matter where you are in your health journey, even making one healthier swap can have lasting effects on your body. I hope you enjoy this conversation with Dr. Yvonne Burkart! 

In this episode you’ll discover:

  • The risk factors associated with using conventional deodorants. 
  • Why using antiperspirant can block your detox pathways. 
  • How antiperspirants can actually make you smell worse. 
  • What to look for in a safer deodorant & the #1 kind to avoid.  
  • The problem with fragrances in feminine care products.  
  • Why scented products can be traced back to racism and socioeconomic inequity. 
  • The importance of using organic cotton in feminine products. 
  • What to look for in silicone menstrual devices.  
  • How breast implants can increase the body’s toxic load.  
  • What PFAs are.  
  • The most toxic type of toilet paper & what to look for instead.  
  • Why tweens using makeup is concerning.  
  • The best options for makeup remover.  
  • Why Dr. Burkhart is passionate about helping other make healthier swaps.  

Items mentioned in this episode include:

This episode of The Model Health Show is brought to you by Ettitude & Pique!


Use my code MODEL15 at to save 15% on organic bedding and bath towels that uplift your home, your outlook, and the planet.


Go to for exclusive savings on bundles & subscriptions on cutting-edge solutions for your head-to-toe health and beauty transformation. 

Thank you so much for checking out this episode of The Model Health Show. If you haven’t done so already, please take a minute and leave a quick rating and review of the show on Apple Podcast by clicking on the link below. It will help us to keep delivering life-changing information for you every week!


SHAWN STEVENSON: Welcome to the Model Health Show. This is fitness and nutrition expert, Shawn Stevenson. And I'm so grateful for you tuning in with me today. Are there dangerous chemicals that are lurking in your toilet paper and personal care products? That's what we're going to be talking about today with toxicologist, Dr. Yvonne Burkart. The last time she was on the show, it blew up the internet. There are tens of millions of views on social media from our last conversation. People have been clipping off parts of the show and different videos we've shared. It went bonanza. And today she's going to share even more insights. And this is not to be inundated or to live in fear, but this is to be educated about these things that we've normalized, these different personal care products and different things in our environment that can be doing us harm. And it's really the cumulative effect of all these things. And basically we're running a huge human experiment right now when utilizing some of these things. And today we're going to shine a bright light on these things. And also she's going to point you to some better options. That's what I really love about her work is that yes, there are some things for us to be concerned about when it comes to different products and personal care products.


And again, like toilet paper, all right, this is crazy what you're going to learn, but there are better options. And many of these things, we don't have to turn our world upside down to make an upgrade. And so that's the really exciting part is that more and more companies are stepping up to make cleaner products, things that add to our health rather than take them away. And as a matter of fact, one of the most overlooked products, because this is something where we spend a lot of time, about one third of our lives are spent in our bed. All right. And so that environment matters a lot. And most people don't realize, and I know I didn't think about this. Our bedding can make us healthier or it can actually be detrimental to our health. A lot of conventional bedding, you know, things like our sheets and comforters have harmful chemicals, and this is all backed by peer review data. Okay. harmful chemicals, irritants, allergens, and other compounds, even PFAS, these quote forever chemicals that are very, very difficult for the human body to metabolize.

What's the solution here? Well today, not only can you find sheets that are free from all of these harmful irritants and chemicals, but sheets that can actually improve your sleep quality. In a recent study, randomized three week clinical trial test subjects had their sleep measured to get their baseline in their original sheet condition, whatever kind of random sheets that they're sleeping on. And I know I slept on a lot of random sheets, but typical cotton sheets that are sprayed with a lot of chemicals and irritants. So they monitored objective measurements of their sleep quality. 

Then they randomly assigned the test subjects to sleep on either organic bamboo Lysol sheets or another set of standard cotton sheets for one week. And then they had the test subjects to switch conditions. So if they slept on the organic bamboo lyocell sheets, they had them sleep on conventional cotton sheets, tested all of these objective markers and also subjective data as well. Here's what they found. The researchers found that when test subjects slept on the organic bamboo lyocell sheets from Ettitude, their sleep quality improved by 1. 5%. So a 1. 5 % improvement in sleep efficiency that equated to almost eight more minutes of restorative sleep each night. And if you add that up, that's about 43 extra hours of sleep per year. By doing something they're already doing. They're already sleeping. They're already in the bed, but their sleep quality, they're getting more from that time that they're spending in bed.

Subjectively, the participants found that their mental alertness improved the following day by upwards of 25 % and Here's the most important part. 94 % of people preferred sleeping on these organic bamboo lyocell sheets. They're free from harmful chemicals, irritants, and allergens. They're hypoallergenic. They're antimicrobial, self deodorizing. They're breathable, moisture wicking, and support thermal regulation. What more do you need? What more do you want? These sheets are amazing. And to top it all off, when you slip into these sheets, words can't explain. This is something you got to experience when you slip into these sheets, life's going to be different. You're going to be like, I didn't know that this was a thing. I didn't know that this was possible. I've been sleeping on Ettitude sheets for years and I just don't want to sleep on anything else. Once you have this experience, it just sets a whole new standard for you. And right now you can get 15 % off their amazing sheet sets and more.

They actually have. These phenomenal pajamas. They got the pajama jammy jams as well. These amazing robes are all made from this organic bamboo Lysol. They feel amazing on your skin right now. Go to That's Use the code model 15 at checkout. And you're going to get 15 % off. Plus they have a 30 night sleep trial. So you get to sleep on them, think on them, dream on them. If you don't absolutely love them, you could send them back for a full refund. Go to 15% off exclusively. Again, use the code model 15 and you've got nothing to lose and better sleep to gain. So check them out. And on that note, let's get to our Apple podcast review of the week. 

ITUNES REVIEW: Another five star review titled "one of the best" by 65 giraffe girl. Shawn is one of my favorite podcast hosts, regardless of your level of knowledge or curiosity about functional health and wellness start here. Shawn has great guests, but even better.

He's a bonafide, brilliant interviewer. Personally, when I listen, Shawn always asks the follow up questions I am thinking or saying aloud to myself while working out or doing dishes. So that feels a bit psychic. In all seriousness, I love the show.

SHAWN STEVENSON: Amazing. I love that so much. Thank you so much for sharing that over on Apple Podcasts. I truly do appreciate that. And listen, if you get to do so pop over to Apple podcast and leave a review for the model health show. You're helping to spread goodness. You're helping to spread education. That really does matter with the Apple universe, because it's not just about us. It's about being able to share and expand this message and to reach more people. And when you leave a review, when you share that love, it gets shared with more people. So, I appreciate that truly. And whatever platform that you might be listening on, if there's an ability to leave a review and rate the show, please do because again, it really does matter. And without further ado, let's get to our special guest and topic of the day.

Dr. Yvonne Burkart completed her education and became a board certified toxicologist and worked as a corporate consultant. She's a 22 year veteran of toxicology with expertise in reproductive toxicity, particularly endocrine disruption, infertility, and cancer. She served as a senior toxicologist in the flavor and fragrance chemical industry, where she helped to ensure the safety of flavor ingredients. So she knows the industry, she knows from the inside How these different systems work and after witnessing firsthand the power of a low toxic lifestyle Dr. Yvonne began a mission to help consumers to slash their toxic exposure with confidence and ease She's extremely passionate about helping parents to protect their children from toxic exposure as well.

Dr Yvonne lives here in California with her husband and two children and i'd like to welcome back to the model health show, the one and only Dr. Yvonne Burkhart. Dr. Yvonne Burkhart, welcome back. So good to see you again.

DR. YVONNE BURKART: Good to see you too.

SHAWN STEVENSON: Listen, as a, I was going to say it. Okay. As a toxicologist, you're educating us on products and things in our environment that might be doing us harm. I want to ask you about some of these things that might be hiding in plain sight. One of the most normalized things in our culture, and for some good reason, is deodorant. All right, let's talk a little bit about the deodorant industry and some of the concerns that are there.

DR. YVONNE BURKART: Well, let's first talk about how deodorant is used and where it is used. Of course, it's used in the underarms. It's technically considered a cosmetic product, which is meant to improve or enhance the odor or aroma in this instance But the issue with deodorant is the location where we apply it. There's several risk factors there. Number one, being the fact that it is in an area that is occluded, meaning it's covered up. It's often moist because people tend to sweat there. And the other issue is the proximity to the lymph nodes and the breast tissue. So especially for women, this comprises more of a sensitive area that we need to be careful with. Especially because the ingredients in a lot of conventional deodorants, unfortunately, carry some hefty risks.

SHAWN STEVENSON: So, what about this idea of an anti perspirant?

DR. YVONNE BURKART: Right. An antiperspirant is designed to block perspiration, to prevent you from sweating in that area. And the way that they do this is by using aluminum salts. These are physical blockers of the sweat ducts. And what happens is that over time you begin to sweat less, but this is actually coming at the consequence that you are blocking a detox pathway because sweat is in fact a detox pathway. And it was shown in a series of really elegant studies where they took measurements of environmental contaminants like organophosphate, esters, as well as organochlorine pesticides, BPA, phthalates, a lot of the things that people are becoming more aware about, and they detected them in the sweat. So, clearly, this is not a pathway that would benefit us long term to block. But not only that, there was actually a study that found that the longer you use aluminum containing deodorant, you actually create more body odor because it promotes the growth of bacteria that give off odor.

SHAWN STEVENSON: Well, well, well, look at that. You know, it's so interesting. Again, we're trying to, we're telling the body, don't do something that is designed to do right. Stop perspiring. And here's a bunch of chemicals that basically clog you up and seeing some strange side effect or ramification, which even in the activity of bacteria under those circumstances, I would think that it would be pretty abnormal and we could potentially see the risk of infection go up.

DR. YVONNE BURKART: Right, but that's not the worst part about using deodorant, especially for younger girls. There were actually studies that found an increased risk of breast cancer with the use of Underarm deodorants that contain aluminum salts, especially before the age of 30. Which is most people most people start using deodorant around puberty Because we have changes in our hormones, our body chemistry, and the odor changes. So a lot of people start using deodorant and antiperspirant specifically. Deodorant is meant to deodorize. That's just for the smell, whereas the antiperspirant is meant to block. The issue is that most antiperspirants that contain these aluminum salts also contain fragrances, undisclosed fragrances, which are an umbrella term and often code for endocrine disrupting phthalates.

So you're getting aluminum salts, which are estrogenic, they also have carcinogenic properties, and there have been studies showing that aluminum from deodorant accumulates in breast tissue. So not only is there an increase in the amount of aluminum going in, there are now studies showing that there's almost a four fold increase in the risk of breast cancer if you start using aluminum containing deodorants before the age of 30.

SHAWN STEVENSON: Listen, this is one of those things where, again, it's normalized, we don't really think much about it, but it's so logical, like, you just mentioned that pathway, the proximity to the breast tissue and the lymph nodes, and seeing rates of breast cancer going up precipitously in the last few decades, and there's a variety, there's a host of reasons for this, obviously, but This is one of the things that you talk about as well is this entourage effect.

It's like this cocktail effect of all these different things because a lot of these things when they are studied, if they're studied, they're often studied in isolation, right? So you got this particular, uh, newly invented chemical, right? And it's approved. Maybe it's considered GRAS by the FDA. But then what if it's combined with these five other things? And these, these are the situations that aren't tested. And if we're looking at breast cancer risk, Getting education about the deodorants that people are using, especially young girls, is so important. Again, this is why I'm so happy to have you here. And with that being said, like one of the brands that jumps out, I remember all the girls would rock Secret, right?

Secret, I'm gonna keep my... I don't smell, I'm a girl, it's a secret. My smell's a secret. There's that, there's the Degrees, there's Dove, there's all these different brands. Are there any brands that have safer ingredients?

DR. YVONNE BURKART: Yeah, absolutely. There are a lot of safer deodorants on the market My personal favorites are ones that use organic ingredients food ingredients ideally so coconut oil baking soda arrowroot powder those kind of starches and clays can absorb the moisture and And help you to keep that at bay and you can also have essential oils that can help with the odor But a lot of it actually Comes from the products that we're using already, right?

As I mentioned, Aluminum containing deodorants make you smell worse over time. And so oftentimes when people switch to a more quote unquote natural deodorant or safer option. They complain about the odor. But that's because it's their body trying to normalize and come back to baseline And so what can help in those instances is in our pit detox with clay. So you're trying to pull out the residual aluminum salts that are blocking your sweat ducts, that can help

SHAWN STEVENSON: So are you talking about like a Aztec clay type of thing?

DR. YVONNE BURKART: Yeah, you can do that. You just mix some with water. I've even seen specific armpit detox products So those can also work as well. But I think the key is to stop using the aluminum containing deodorants and the absolute worst kind that you can use are aerosols. Because if you just imagine how you are applying these you use the nozzle and you spray toward the direction of your face. So not only are you applying the deodorant to a really sensitive area now? It's coming towards your airways which comprises an inhalation risk.

SHAWN STEVENSON: I can't super normalize. You know, we've all we've all seen it we've all probably dabbled in that a little bit but... I'm so glad you mentioned how people when they try to make that transition to a safer deodorant and And then they're just like, I'm, I can't stand, like, I'm funky now, you know, and just understanding your body's making that adaptation. And also, of course, finding a deodorant, this is a thing, we're all unique, and certain things are going to vibe better with your body. But also what's not talked about enough is your body's gonna kick off a lot of unfriendly aromas based on your diet as well. You know, like, a lot of stuff is gonna be coming out.

Putrid type smells if things are rotten in you, you know, and just like all of these newly invented food like products as well just like The interaction with your bacteria because that's what it really is at the end of the day. It's the bacteria aspect right so the gases and things like that are this this party basically it takes place with certain Bacteria, you know, they're metabolizing things and they're kicking off their own aromas. And whether this is you know, again being more mindful of a cleaner diet, But also, understand we do have products that we have access to and you just did a great video which everybody if you're not already Following dr. Burkart on instagram do yourself a favor. Make sure you're following her. You just did a great video on a TraderJoe's Deodorant right? Because it's just like they're getting a lot of marketing about it. They've got this great new clean. Framed as a clean deodorant and you did a great analysis of it. Can you share a little bit about what you found?

DR. YVONNE BURKART: Yeah, so I get a lot of requests to review products and Traderjoe's is a very popular place for a lot of people and the deodorant is extremely affordable. It's less than five dollars. It comes in a paper tube. There are a lot of positives about it. The majority of the ingredients are very clean. They're even edible Coconut oil arrowroot powder things like that those are great. The issue comes down when you read the ingredients list you get to an ingredient called ozokerite wax. This sounds pretty innocuous, but it actually is a petroleum byproduct. And the issue with petroleum byproducts is the naturally occurring polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons Which are carcinogens they're naturally occurring within the earth They are just byproducts of the process of combustion and the breakdown Of the earth Fossil fuels and things like that over the years, it just is naturally occurring.

So there are several risk factors with using petroleum byproducts in your underarms. One of them being you are potentially delivering these carcinogens to an area that You already want to keep as clean as possible because all of the factors that we talked about, like the, the fact that it's moist, it's warm, it's covered up, those actually increase chemical penetration and absorption into the bloodstream, which is what a lot of people don't realize. And if you shave your underarms, that's also potentially removing the outer layer of skin, which is actually protective.

SHAWN STEVENSON: That part, so you're going to be even potentially absorbing even more. Now, I love that you mentioned this, this product is way better than you might find in the so called Secret or Degree or something like that. And so it's great that companies are making attempts to do better. And we have people like yourself to just hold them accountable, like, okay, this is great. And we've got these other issues to be mindful of. And also it is helping to reduce our overall toxic load. When we make a switch like that to the Traderjoe's for example, and so it's like for me It's not to try to do everything perfectly But when we can make cleaner choices and reduce that overall kind of entourage effect, I think we'll do a little bit better

DR. YVONNE BURKART: Absolutely. So a Traderjoe's deodorant is not a bad choice whatsoever. It's Significant improvement over what you mentioned, but can we do better? Yes, if you can do better then try your best if you can't then that's still not a bad choice.

SHAWN STEVENSON: Can you share a little bit more about this connection with fragrances and dilates? Because another area of, especially again, talking about areas of our bodies, but another area where fragrances are very, very popular and just kind of rampant in that product line is feminine care products. So can you talk about the connection with dilates? fragrances and feminine care products.

DR. YVONNE BURKART: Yes, so phthalates are estrogenic compounds that are plasticizer chemicals. They're added to plastics to make them more moldable and Malleable. They're also added to fragrances to help the scent linger. They're called fragrance fixatives. So what it does is actually allow the fragrance manufacturers to reduce the amount of fragrance chemicals they use, drive down the cost, and it extends the life of that fragrance on the surface.

So for example, if you spray a perfume on your clothing and you can still smell it several hours later, that's a dead giveaway of phthalates. And phthalates are still being added to fragrances if you check the international fragrance association or IFRA that is the, Sort of it's not a governing body, but it's the fragrance industry Organization they published a transparency list and in that list you can see nearly 4, 000 chemicals Any combination of which can be under the umbrella term fragrance or parfum, which you will see on a label. So that's kind of how phthalates are sneaking into a lot of our personal care and beauty products or household products in general Is through the umbrella term of fragrance. So when it comes to feminine care products a lot of women are choosing scented and fragrance products to help combat maybe some odor or just the feeling that they have an odor and unfortunately this Is has some roots in, in racism because throughout the years, some people were made to feel that they were dirty, or smelly, or needed to somehow improve their, their aroma in that area, which is extremely unfortunate.

So it has become really pervasive in lower income communities. Which are hit the hardest when it comes to environmental toxicity, it's environmental injustice, basically, it's, it's horrible. And so the goal. is to educate women to make better choices so that they are not Inadvertently exposing themselves to things that they don't even need because the vagina is self cleaning. We don't need any scented products down there. Water is technically enough.

SHAWN STEVENSON: Now the analysis that you're mentioning and this was published in the journal frontiers and reproductive health, this was new this 2023 And the title of it is examining differences in menstrual and intimate care product use by race ethnicity and education among menstruating individuals and so again that we have data on this stuff now and Really to combat this to help better understand balance the scales is just really helping to get this education out.

And that's the power of platforms like this and the work that you're doing. I was just looking at one of your Instagram videos, just like it is so good, so informative and well done. And you're sharing the data with everybody, but also love that you share options and you dig deeper. This is the part that speaks to my heart, you know, is that you dig deeper into the why and start to unpack these different levels of things. And for example, this, Really overlooked aspect of detoxification like how our body handles things and you mentioned in that particular video first pass detoxification So let's talk a little bit about that.

DR. YVONNE BURKART: First pass detoxification is the pathway of blood movement, so circulation, from the gut to the liver That's what's known as first pass detoxification. So the substances that we ingest through foods and drinks will reach the portal circulation and get shuttled to the liver. The liver is one of our major detoxification organs in addition to the kidneys. So the liver is not a filter. The liver Undergoes, chemicals undergo biotransformation in the liver to make them more water soluble and allow them to be excreted either in the urine or in the feces.

That does not happen through the route of chemical absorption through the vagina. So when you're using products in the vaginal area, especially those that are inserted, the VA vagina is actually used as a route of drug delivery because it is highly vascularized, so you can deliver hormones. And other drugs that are used there, for example, progesterone suppositories are used during pregnancy. So clearly this is a route that is very sensitive, highly absorptive to chemicals. And women are being sold products that are completely packed with these awful chemicals that shouldn't be in an area that isn't going to receive first pass detoxification. So when you're using these toxic feminine care products, it's almost like a direct hit. In your reproductive system, you're delivering these highly estrogenic, highly reactive compounds to an area that is highly sensitive to estrogen.

SHAWN STEVENSON: Yeah, we've been talking about this a lot and I keep working to expand this education repeatedly on human reproductive health and infertility just skyrocketing in the past 50 years. And there's some big analysis about these. These issues, you know, sperm count going down, miscarriages going up, and just overall infertility. And there was a great paper, and we'll put that for everybody, in the show notes that was published in the Scientific American. And just kind of, just looking at some of these data points, and fertility, human fertility, reducing about one percent every year.

For the past 50 years. And it's just like, it has this cumulative effect and that's, it should be shocking and scary because there's movies about this stuff. Like humans lose their ability to reproduce. And this is not a joke, like it is actually happening right now. Our ability to reproduce as a species has gone down dramatically. And for me, when I hear about stuff like this and, and, and some of these products. I think about how that might be contributing to this issue. Again, not to say that this is the cause, but if we're interacting with these things that are, are in fact, influencing hormones. And if we're talking about this process of reproductive health has a lot to do with our hormones, we should be just really having our antennas up and be much more skeptical about this stuff.

But unfortunately, as you mentioned, it's been normalized. And in particular, there's certain demographics. In our culture right now, are in particular using these products lacking access to education. We're changing that, yes, but we've got to take this seriously. And so I want to ask you about feminine hygiene products again super normalizing our culture. There's fragrances is one issue, but there might be other stuff that people need to be mindful of so tampons pads things of the like What are some things for women to be aware of and also are there some better options?

DR. YVONNE BURKART: So to answer your question, yes, there are better options and the things that we need to be aware of first and foremost is the materials, the materials that these are made out of. So a menstrual pad is basically a plastic backing and in the core is a super absorbent polymer. So it's some sort of acrylic polymer fluff mixture. It's a gel. 

So when liquid hits it, it expands, it absorbs more liquid than than its actual volume. Then there's another top layer, usually plastic. So what's going on here is that there's bleaching going on. So cotton, if cotton is used, then organic cotton is your best option there because most conventional cotton is sprayed with glyphosate. So nobody knows what is the effect of having glyphosate in the vulvar tissues, the vagina area, right? So the issue with this area of the body is again, it's occluded. So it's covered up. It's often moist and there's friction So all of these factors increase chemical penetration and absorption. And there's actually been studies showing that women who use tampons have higher levels of mercury and oxidative stress in their bodies

SHAWN STEVENSON: You just said it. This has not been studied, you know again glyphosate We might think about that in terms of maybe our food supply and getting some attention now But what about personal care products like that and the sensitive tissues that they're... This is crazy. This is crazy now with this being said. You said that there are some better options available. Let's talk about those.

DR. YVONNE BURKART: So the better options would be organic cotton pads. Pads would not be my personal top choice, simply because there is still plastic there. So you could still be getting the plasticizer chemicals, the phthalates that I mentioned. So that's not necessarily the top pick, but if that's your preference, then I would recommend a reusable organic cotton pad. Then there are menstrual cups. These are made out of silicone. The problem with silicone is that there are several qualities. And the low quality ambiguous materials are the ones that are the highest risk. The ones that you want to look for would be medical grade or platinum cured silicone. Those appear to have the lowest risks Although those again have not been extensively studied and there could be some residual platinum or silicone migrating from those materials into your vaginal canal.

Nobody knows again. It hasn't been well characterized. So to your point being more skeptical and questioning, how do these products work? What are some of their unintended consequences that we might want to weigh out the risks and benefits? There are also Period underwear which are reusable period underwear. They have some sort of Absorbent core in the gusset or in the crotch area to collect the blood. But the problem is that there were some main, main brands that were found to contain high levels of PFAS chemicals in the crotch area of these period underwear. So it seemed like such an incredible invention that women could avoid disposable period products and just use these reusable underwear. It seemed so eco friendly and like such a great option. But unfortunately, consumer investigations found high levels of PFAS chemicals in there. So, that's another concern or risk factor that we need to look for. So, the top choice would be to look for period underwear that was tested for PFAS.

SHAWN STEVENSON: And also, the PFAS is the issue with some of these other products in the first place.


SHAWN STEVENSON: Big issue, actually. And there's just, there's so many of them that most of us don't know about. And I wasn't going to ask you about this, but just mentioning silicone, but just. The idea, thinking about silicone, I think about breast implants, I think about, you know, these kinds of foreign objects that are, you know, implanted into one's body and the potential dangers there.

Now, of course, a lot of data has come out over the years, there have been innovations to make these procedures safer. And of course, we want people to be able to, you know, make their own decisions on what they're doing with their bodies. Right now, we're living at a time where there's a lot of stuff getting put in people's bodies. All right, BBLs are out here. All right. Now, I don't know if you have thought about or looked into any of this data on the BBL phenomenon, but is there anything that you could share on that front?

DR. YVONNE BURKART: Not specifically on these types of cosmetic enhancements. I can talk about breast implants and some of the risks there because the silicone can often be what they call polymerized with platinum, and there is residual platinum that can be leaching out of these breast implants into a woman's body. So that is a risk factor. And so there are a lot of studies on this.

SHAWN STEVENSON: With the silicone potentially getting into a woman's body. What would be some of the ramifications potentially?

DR. YVONNE BURKART: There can be some oxidative stress. There could be some other types of reactions going on in the body. Toxic response. It is also a foreign substance as well. So, inflammation. There are a lot of risk factors when you insert something into the body and over time it can actually become encapsulated or it can actually burst open. The worst case scenario is if it bursts open because then the contents are just spilling into the body.

SHAWN STEVENSON: And also I would imagine again, it would be a constant battle with our immune system as well with that foreign object.

DR. YVONNE BURKART: Right, exactly.

SHAWN STEVENSON: We've got a quick break coming up. We'll be right back.

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Now to shift over to something that's pretty universal in our culture, as far as intimate interaction with our skin, with our bodies, It's toilet paper. All right. Now, this is another one of those things that we just see the Charmin commercial, you know, Softish Charmin and Cottonelle and all these different things. And it's just a normal part of our day to day lives. Should people think twice about what they're wiping their butt with?

DR. YVONNE BURKART: Yes. And this is, this might be a shock to a lot of people, but there are toxic chemicals in toilet paper, unfortunately. There was actually a study that looked at toilet paper from various continents, so this is a global issue. This is not just a localized American issue, for example. 

But they looked at wastewater, they looked at toilet paper, and they actually found high levels of PFAS chemicals. And you might be wondering, why are there PFAS chemicals in my toilet paper? Some manufacturers add them, during the process of manufacturing.

SHAWN STEVENSON: Can you share just for people that don't know, maybe they missed this. What are PFAS chemicals?

DR. YVONNE BURKART: PFAS chemicals are fluorinated compounds known as per and polyfluoroalkyl substances or PFAS for short. There are nearly 15, 000 varieties of chemicals in this chemical group. They are extremely persistent in the environment as well as in the body. And we are continuously exposed. So they are bioaccumulating the half life can be several years. Which is extremely extraordinarily long for a chemical in the body to persist for years And that is the exact duration or how long they stay in the body is unknown. But they're called forever chemicals because they basically stay around forever once they're created. It takes a lot of energy to destroy them.

SHAWN STEVENSON: Whoa! Okay Now this makes me think about of course It's another thing for us to be worried about and i'm thinking back for my wife who's from kenya. Like, what do you use? When she came to America and they had like toilet paper, like cottonelle, she was like, Oh my God, this is like, this is heaven on earth because they would literally use newspaper and like kind of rub the newspaper together. And, you know, just throughout, you know, human evolution in different cultures, people have used different things to wipe oneself, you know, whether it's like something in nature, whatever the case might be. And so our high sediti, our high status selves, Have invented toilet paper. Now, this is not to negate a remarkable invention or innovation, but keeping that in mind, that same kind of format, because I think some people are like, well, what do I do?

Do I just like, I don't know what people might be thinking about as far as like, what should I use now for this toilet paper can be potentially harmful. And again, keeping in mind for women, the interaction with the vagina as well. This is another one of those great resources that you shared just in an Instagram video. There are so many options for things that are more toilet paper like in that same kind of structure that we're used to. So let's talk about some better quality options and also things that have been utilized By many cultures like a bidet, for example, like what are some better options than cottonelle?

DR. YVONNE BURKART: Well first before we get into the better options. I want to Let people know that recycled toilet paper is by far the worst option for you because people often throw Thermal receipt paper, which is pretty much every receipt paper out there right now Into the recycle bin that gets mixed into paper products. And if you're using toilet paper that's made with recycled paper You could be smearing Bisphenol, which is a potent estrogenic compound again an endocrine disruptor In your private area, which is exactly where you don't want it to be Keep that stuff as far away from the area as possible. So avoid recycled toilet paper.

First and foremost, it might seem like an eco friendly option, but it is not a health friendly option. The better option would be an unbleached bamboo toilet paper. Definitely avoid anything recycled. So there are several brands out there. But the issue is that any toilet paper or paper product can be contaminated with PFAS, simply because there is so much of it in our environment, in water, in manufacturing equipment. So you want to look for brands that have actually tested for PFAS. And I have found a few brands, actually a very small number, but there are two brands that I found that have tested for PFAS and have come back non detectable, which is definitely a good sign.

SHAWN STEVENSON: So where do people get access to your curated items?

DR. YVONNE BURKART: You can visit my website, DrYvonneBurkhart. com. I have all of my favorite products on there under my shop tab.

SHAWN STEVENSON: Awesome, awesome. And also you work with Swellscore as well, right?


SHAWN STEVENSON: So talk about that a little bit.

DR. YVONNE BURKART: Yes, the Swellscore is basically an online wellness platform that is full of doctor curated and vetted products. So the personal beauty and personal care products, I have vetted. And I approve of them, and there are some of my favorite brands on there, and you can find beauty, personal care, cosmetics, baby products, household supplements, and these have all been vetted, and we look for contamination reports, third party testing, to really verify that these are pure products.

SHAWN STEVENSON: Now, mentioning beauty, alright. The beauty products industry makeup is exploded in recent years, a lot of celebrities have their product lines and things like that. And now younger and younger girls have been just like all in on makeup. And so knowing that, again, this is something that's applied to the skin. Is this another place for people to just like, let's get a little bit of education about these things. All products are not created equal. Let's talk a little bit about the makeup industry.

DR. YVONNE BURKART: The makeup industry is valued at over 500 billion dollars per year. And unfortunately, like you mentioned, Girls are younger and younger starting to wear makeup and skin care. In fact, there is a phenomenon called the Sephora teen craze, but they're not even teens. These are tweens. These are 10, 9 year old girls rushing to Sephora to get skin care products.

And this is a disturbing trend because the younger you are, the earlier you start using products that contain some of these harmful and ingredients of concern, The worst off you'll be in the long term because makeup is a leave on product So a leave on product is something that stays on the skin. You leave it on until you wash it off So the longer contact time there is between a product and your skin the higher the likelihood of chemical penetration and absorption.

SHAWN STEVENSON: Holy moly. And I would imagine even the makeup removal products as well. It's probably got some concerning chemicals in there.

DR. YVONNE BURKART: Yeah, definitely because these products are, you know Intended to break down fat and different types of substances on the skin oil and dirt that can usually contain penetration enhancers Because that's what they do. They break down these lipids and things like that and they allow these chemicals to More readily enter the bloodstream. So the best option for removing makeup is to use a cleansing oil. Organic Optimal but again, even if it's not organic doesn't matter. It's still better than using some of these synthetic chemical makeup removing products.

SHAWN STEVENSON: So something like coconut oil?

DR. YVONNE BURKART: Coconut oil can be a little bit pore clogging, so look for something that has jojoba oil or other more skin friendly oils.

SHAWN STEVENSON: Got it, got it. Mentioning that this is, this phenomenon taking place in tweens, for me that's bringing up the lifespan of the product use is now substantially longer. And also with the developing body of these young women, and how much more Influential these things can be, you know, we, we know data on early use of things like, you know, alcohol and marijuana and having really damaging effects on the young developing brain.

And I would imagine that this would be even more influential on a young developing endocrine system as well. And so again, looking at the long tail effects, we're seeing this reduction in fertility. We're seeing more hormone related cancers and the like Again, it's this entourage effect. This isn't to demonize makeup.

This is to say If you're doing this plus this plus this you're just coating your body every day And all these newly invented chemicals and wondering why? This problem is happening. So, you know, you've already shared so many incredible insights. Can you speak a little bit to just the sheer amount of products that the average person is using right now?

DR. YVONNE BURKART: Yes, it is becoming more of a problem because we're seeing these TikToks and YouTube social media videos of people doing 12 step skincare. 12 step skincare is so unnecessary. Personally, I prefer to use a minimalistic routine. So the fewer the products, the better for your toxic load, for your wallet, for your health, for all of the above.

The Environmental Working Group estimates that the average woman applies over 160 or 168 chemicals to be exact to her body before she leaves the house. And that's just from her normal everyday activities. And are all of them toxic? Maybe not. But a large majority probably are if you're using conventional products, not looking at the ingredients list, and really not vetting the products before you buy them.

SHAWN STEVENSON: Yeah, and the biggest takeaway is These things have not been studied when combining them together.

DR. YVONNE BURKART: Exactly Like you said if a substance was studied which is extremely rare Then it's applied at extraordinarily high doses in laboratory animals one at a time. Last time I checked humans are not rats and mice. So there is not a one to one correlation between what you would see in an animal what you see in a human. Furthermore, there is no way. it's impossible to recapitulate or recreate what a person would actually be exposed to during their lifetime with all the environmental factors going on outside of our homes.

SHAWN STEVENSON: Every time I hear from you, it changes my thinking about something. And it's a really remarkable gift that you have, you know, and also just the work that you're doing for everybody behind the scenes. And I know, of course, you've got a family, you know, you have your kids. And you're wanting to do the best for them as well, but sharing your insights is just like, we need this right now. And our last time, our last conversation, you know, some of those clips, I'm not kidding. Like everybody, you've got to follow her on Instagram. The content, the information that was created here in this room, has tens of millions of views on social media. And. It's like, it really is a galvanizing thing to like, Oh, I didn't know that those kind of moments, like a lot of aha moments come from this.

 I wanted to just really thank you because people don't know how much work it takes for you to stay on top of this data, for you to curate products and even for you to come here to the studio, like it's a, it's a, it's a ordeal for you to get here, you know, but just to be able to serve and to support and I just wanted to thank you for that because you know, you're, you're really amazing and the catalyst for getting you back on the show was my wife, as I share with you.

You know, it was one of the episodes she listened to, you know, and she was sitting there at the table and I've told her about some of these things for years, years, but I'm like in the kitchen, I was making some food or something and she, every five minutes she would pause and she's like, babe, did you know? And I'm just like, yes, baby. Yeah, I know. You know, and it's just like by you, by coming from you, it hit differently. And again, I just wanted to thank you so much for the work that you're doing, because it really is making a difference.

DR. YVONNE BURKART: Thank you so much. It's really come from a personal struggle and personal experience with having had a high toxic load and reproductive struggles. So being able to overcome that by removing these ingredients of concern, slowly, step by step, one at a time, I was able to recover my health and my fertility. So that really drives what I do every single day. If I can help one person then it was all worth it.

SHAWN STEVENSON: Amazing amazing. Well again, can you let everybody know where they can follow you on social media and your website as well?

DR. YVONNE BURKART: Yes, you can follow me on instagram at dr. Yvonne Burkart. I'm also really active on youtube and my website is dr Yvonne Burkart. com

SHAWN STEVENSON: And everybody listening also on youtube as well. Take a screenshot of this episode and share it on Instagram. All right. Tag me. I'm @Shawnmodel and tag Dr. Burkhart. She's going to be on the lookout for the love. So make sure to share this as well. And if you're on YouTube, by the way, leave a comment below and share your biggest aha moment. Like what of the items that she talked about today, where you just like, Oh my God, I had no idea. Make sure to share that on the YouTube video.

And I've got so many more questions for you, but we're going to save them for round three. All right, because again, we're trying to find health in a culture that is largely unhealthy. You know, we've talked about some of these statistics. According to the CDC, 60 % of the average American adults today, 60 percent have at least one chronic disease. 40 % have two or more. We've normalized being unwell. We've normalized disease. We have a disease culture. And according to the JAMA journal, the American Medical Association, a huge meta analysis, the number one causative agent from their findings is poor diet. And that's coming along with all these newly invented chemicals, ultra processed foods, but our skin eats as well.

You mentioned something that can easily be overlooked earlier. The fact that we're breathing. That is, that is the primary pathway of toxins, I believe, and I'm going to defer to the toxicologists of getting into our tissues and potentially causing us harm are the things that we're breathing.

DR. YVONNE BURKART: 100%. The route of inhalation exposure is second only to IV injection. So when you inhale a substance, it quickly enters the bloodstream. Particles can get lodged in the lungs and they can also reach, gases and VOCs can reach your brain. Right? When you smell something, your mood changes. That's a clear indication of that. Just the proximity of the nose to the brain.

SHAWN STEVENSON: That's powerful. And again, that analysis in JAMA Denoting poor diet, but also of course, they denoted smoking being a big causative agent of disease But they're not talking about the toxic products that we are just inundated with they're not looking at that stuff yet But you are and we don't want to be waiting around until they get the science, right? We want to make better choices now and thanks to you were able to do that. So thank you so much.


SHAWN STEVENSON: Dr. Yvonne Burkart everybody Thank you so much for tuning into this episode. My challenge to you is to make one positive upgrade this week. All right. So you heard us go through a plethora of different personal care products, and these are things that pretty much all of us are interacting with at some degree, but make one upgrade. All right. So if you are using a deodorant that you know is sketchy. Make a choice and maybe upgrade that. Or if it's the toilet paper, all right, maybe make an effort to upgrade that. And of course, like we have our certain standard things that you might be used to. So you've got to understand that some of these products, there might be an expectation hangover that we need to account for, you know, and so we're not talking about going from, you know, the typical run of the mill toilet paper, like cotton now, for example, Where if somebody changes over to the one ply, all right, shout out to Seinfeld.

There was an episode where he was in the public stall and ran out of toilet paper. It was an emergency situation and he knew the stall next to him, they had a supply. And he asked the person, can I get, let me get, you know, a little toilet paper. Can you, can you toss them over? And they're just like, you know, there's, I don't have enough. And he's like, just split it. Give me one ply. Okay. Right? Just give me one ply. One ply is all I need, you know. But you know that there's a much higher incidence if you don't have enough ply for the toilet paper to, to break down, to not be able to do the job that it's trying to do. And we're not talking about going from Cottonelle and like quadruple ply, you know, triple platinum, you know, wipe away your whole past history. We're not talking about going from that. To the one ply we're talking about switching to a different material. And so, yes, that might be a different experience, but we're not looking to, you know, for some people that just like. How can I go from that to something that doesn't feel the same or feel as cushy to my tushy.

And just keeping that in mind that you're trying something new, but if you're doing this in the spirit of good health and being able to access something for years to come, that might help your health and the health of your family. It's important for us to give new things a try and to be open to new experiences. And so upgrading, whether that's the toilet paper, whether that's the personal care products, the feminine hygiene products, the deodorant, whatever the case might be. I challenge you to make one upgrade this week because just one upgrade can help to reduce your toxic load. And that's what Dr. Yvonne Burkart's work is all about.

I appreciate you so much for tuning into this episode. Again, share this out with your friends and family. Take a screenshot of the episode, share it on Instagram, tag me. @Shawnmodel and tag Dr. Burkart as well. She's going to keep an eye out for these mentions and she would love, I know it would make her entire month just to get flooded with love. So I also implore you to share the love with her. She's done so much incredible work and just being able to let her know that we're listening can help to feed someone's spirit. So please share the love over on Instagram as well. And we got some epic masterclasses and world class guests coming your way very soon.

So make sure to stay tuned, take care, have an amazing day. I'll talk with you soon. And for more after the show, make sure to head over to That's where you can find all of the show notes. You can find transcriptions, videos for each episode. And if you got a comment, you can leave me a comment there as well. And please make sure to head over to iTunes and leave us a rating to let everybody know that the show is awesome. And I appreciate that so much. And take care. I promise to keep giving you more powerful, empowering, great content to help you transform your life. Thanks for tuning in


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