Your Body Absorbs Certain Sunscreen Chemicals — But Is That Safe?

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Your Body Absorbs Certain Sunscreen Chemicals — But Is That Safe?
A new study found some common sunscreen ingredients stay in the bloodstream for at least a day, and experts aren't sure if that's safe or not.
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A new government study found that certain sunscreen chemicals are absorbed into a person's bloodstream at significantly high levels, and some stay there for a least a day after use. 

FDA researchers wanted to know if the the absorption of four active ingredients in sunscreens posed a health risk or not. They surveyed 24 people who applied the products religiously for four days, and there were a few big takeaways. 

First, the absorption levels of all of the chemicals exceeded the agency's threshold for requiring safety testing. 

And second, three of the chemicals stayed in the body for at least 24 hours after application. 

It's not a new finding that products applied to the skin are absorbed. But the FDA says the study shows these ingredients need more research before they can be heralded as safe and effective for consumer use. 

Health experts warn this doesn't mean you should skip your regular sunscreen application. If you're worried, you can use sunscreens made with zinc oxide or titanium oxide — those don't contain the chemicals in question. 

The research is part of a broader sunscreen safety effort from federal regulators. Earlier this year, the FDA unveiled plans to strengthen regulations for most sunscreen products in the U.S., addressing active ingredient safety, dosage forms and SPF requirements. 

Additional reporting from Newsy affiliate CNN