Pete Evans
"My Kitchen Rules" judges Pete Evans and Manu Feildel. Facebook/Chef Pete Evans

“My Kitchen Rules” judge Pete Evans recently cooked up a controversy on social media due to his comments about sunscreen. His remarks have angered cancer research experts as Evans, during a Q&A session on Facebook, said that sunscreen is full of poisonous chemicals.

When the celebrity chef was asked what he uses for sunscreen, he said he uses “generally nothing” and also discouraged people to stop using normal sunscreen as they are only covering themselves in “poisonous chemicals.”

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“The silly thing is people put on normal chemical sunscreen then lay out in the sun for hours on end and think that they are safe because they have covered themselves in poisonous chemicals which is a recipe for disaster as we are witnessing these days. We need to respect the sun but not hide from it either as it is so beneficial for us, but use common sense. The goal is always never to burn yourself,” Evans wrote in reply to a commenter’s post.

However, Cancer Council’s director of education Terry Slevin was not happy with Evans’ remark and said that the science is clear to the people. Skin cancer risk is increased with increased exposure to UV radiation and experts, who have spent decades on research, have revealed this.

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“Sunscreen use, including UV absorbers, which he refers to as chemical sunscreen, has been proven to reduce skin cancer risk. The question is who should people take their advice from on sun protection. Mr Evans is not someone I would call on for that advice. It’s yet another case of someone (in this case with a media profile) undermining the safety and efficacy of sunscreen,” Slevin told

The Public Health Association of Australia’s Michael Moore said that Evans’ sunscreen advice was outrageous. When pressed to clarify his remarks, Evans said he promotes the use of non-toxic sunscreen if someone is spending long hours in the sun.

He added that being sensible with the time spent outside is very important. Next he explained that people should use common sense and research well before applying a product as bad products are also available in the market. Hence, choosing wisely is important.

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