Copyright 2009 | John A. McBride
Molds that grow indoors usually have no natural elements to hinder their growth. All mold needs to thrive is water and a food source. Cellulose is the main meal that this fungi needs. It can be found in wood, paper, tile glue, rugs, and on or in many other items. Mold is commonly found in or on sheetrock as it is wrapped in paper; just add a little dampness and it serves as a fantastic media for mold to thrive. It also can be located growing in HVAC systems, behind walls, on furniture, under the floor or rug, clothing, dehumidifiers, mattresses, and other common places. It also can be stealth and just because you do not see or smell it does not mean it is not there. Keeping the indoor humidity at or below 37% is generally recommended to help avoid mold growth.
Human health can be affected by the way mold functions. Molds release spores and shed particulates. Located on this microscopic matter is an array of chemical toxins. The following types of toxins are specie dependent: Stachybotry’s produces Satratoxins (F, G, H) as well as, Spirocyclic Drimanes, Roridin, Hydroxyroridin E, Verrucarin J, Trichodermin, Dolabellanes, Altrones B & C, & Stahybotrylactams. These have been confirmed to cause protein synthesis inhibition, neurotoxicity (brain toxicity), cytotoxicity (cell toxicity), & immune toxicity (immune cell depression & damage)
(Gray et al 2003; Thrasher and Crawley, 2009). These occurrences may lead to intestinal, neurological, central nervous system, pulmonary, soft tissue, bone, and a whole host of other biological system destruction. Other species that are found and cause damage to name a few are: Aspergillus, Penicillium, Fusarium, Chaetomium, Fusarium, and Cladosporium. Some of the toxins associated with these species and their specific subspecies are: Aflatoxins, Ochratoxins, Sterigmatocystin, Chaetoglobosum A & C, & Patulin (found also in corn). Mycotoxins have been shown to reduce blood flow to areas of the brain and can also be linked to CNS & organ damage, not to mention various cancers (Crago et al 2003, Etzel, 2006).
There are numerous symptoms & conditions that have been associated with mold. Fatigue, runny stuffy nose, sleeplessness, rapid weight gain or loss, hair loss, dry skin, asthma, COPD, Hypersensitivity Pneumonitis, chronic pain, numbness, leaky gut, blurred vision, behavioral changes, rage, tooth issues, insulin resistance, IBS, fibromyalgia, chemical sensitivity (Toxic Encephalopathy), constipation and or diarrhea, abdominal cramps, nausea, heart failure, and this list also goes on. (Shoemaker, 2005). Mycotoxins send the immune system into overdrive, which leads to inflammatory conditions. In most cases, individuals who are being affected by mold suffer many of these symptoms as well as their pets. Children 11 and under, are more susceptible as their immune systems are still at a very early stage of development. Recent research revealed that SIDS may be caused by mold growth in mattresses (Sprott, 2009, Sheppard, 2004). Mold can accumulate from spilled juices, milk, and urine as well as from exposure in a structure, which already has a mold problem. Used mattresses obtained due to affordability or given by family can also contain mold and it’s mycotoxins. Baby mattresses are at times considered family air looms and can be used repeatedly. Mycotoxins can be dangerous enough! However, these toxins can also be combined with other hazardous chemicals used as fire retardants. This will be addressed later in this paper.
If you or someone you know suspects they have a mold problem, they should consult a physician who is properly educated & trained to recognize, diagnose and treat mycotoxicosis (mold toxicity) and get qualified professionals to test and remediate the mold. The person testing should never be the person hired to remediate as this serves as a conflict of interest. Sources where trained professionals can be located to mention a few are the Indoor Air Quality Association (IAQA) and/or The American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE). Some toxicologists are also very knowledgeable and often will perform in depth stage testing and can offer medical evaluations as well.
Dampness & moisture also invites other dangerous microorganisms that produce toxins such as bacteria. Commonly found inside structures with moisture issues are both gram positive & negative bacteria. Gram positive bacteria are potentially pathogenic and can also lead to cytokine inflammatory responses, which may cause serious health conditions. (Thrasher and Crawley, 2009) Actinobacteria such as Streptomyces, Nocardia and Mycobacterium are some of the genera. Some bacteria can affect the mitochondria (cells power plant, where your DNA is located). Species such as Bacillus simplex can produce Surfactin and peptides that can also affect cell membranes. Streptomyces species are also the source of antibiotics and chemotherapeutic drugs.
Gram negative bacteria such E. coli, Enterobacter, Pseudomonas, Caulobacter, and Argobacterium, can be very infectious as they produce LPS (lipopolysaccharide), which is an Endotoxin. Staphylococci are another species and in many mold patients, antibiotic resistant Staph (Shoemaker, 2005) has been found often in nasal swabs. These bacteria have been found in carpeting, vents, humidifiers, drywall, etc. detected in culture samplings taken from environmental testing.
It is important to note that some species of bacteria are known to work synergistically with the effects of mold fungi. There are many other species of both plus other microorganisms that can inhabit our domains if not properly maintained. Proper maintenance, prevention, and if need be testing and remediation is key to protecting you and your loved ones health.
Single celled organisms, which have also been found inside damp building structures, can actually have an impact on the survival and growth of mold and bacteria and visa versa. There have been a few studies which looked at the Amoeba’s affect on the microorganisms and their effect on human health. It was found that fungi and bacteria profited from its presence. On the other hand, species of Streptomyces californicus, Stachybotry’s chartarum, and Bacillus cereus had a negative impact on the amoeba. (Yli-Pirila et al 2006)
In health studies mouse models were used to observe immune responses. When the amoeba was introduced and co-cultured with both bacteria and fungi separately, cytotoxicity of the bacteria and fungi used, increased. Increase in the amounts by two orders in the production of the cytokine IL6 (interleukin 6) and TNF-A (tumor necrosis factor alpha) was four times higher. The macrophages also produced nitric oxide (NO) ten times higher then the cultures that did not contain the amoeba. (Yli-Pirila et al 2007) Nitric oxide is one of the elements that have been shown to be linked with chemical hypersensitivity and weakening of the Brain Blood Barrier (BBB). This is known as the NO-OH-NO theory. This theory reveals that NMDA receptors located in the brain become over active due to chemical exposure and produce nitric oxide. Nitric oxide (NO) is then oxidized to peroxynitrate. (OH). The “OH” interferes with ATP production, which makes the cells containing the NMDA receptors more sensitive to stimulation form the “NO”. “OH” also leads to breaking down the BBB. The increased Nitric oxide diffuses back to the NMDA receptors causing the enzymes glutamate and aspartate to produce more nitric oxide (NO). Thus “NO”, “OH”, “NO”, (Pall, 2007). It is plausible this may be applied to all toxic chemical exposures.
Other Indoor Hazards
Your Living Room:
Just sitting in your living room and viewing you favorite TV program can actually be affecting your health in ways you never imagined. Your couch, your TV, rug, and your computer(s) all contain and out gas toxic chemicals including but not limited to fire retardants.
Fire retardants are made up of various chemicals that are broken down into different classes. These are: halogenated organic (usually brominated or chlorinated), phosphorus containing, nitrogen containing, and inorganic flame-retardants. Brominated Fire Retardants (BFR) are used the most because they cost less. It is reported that BFR’s are present in the environment and in humans at high concentrations far from where they are being produced. Different types of BFR’s commonly produced are (Birnbaum 2004): tetrabromobisphenol A (TBBPA), hexabromocyclododecane (HBCD), and three commercial mixtures of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), or biphenyl oxides, which are known as decabromodiphenyl ether (DBDE), octabromodiphenyl ether (OBDE), and pentabromodiphenyl ether (pentaBDE). They are used in polymers that are used in products such as computers, TV’s and other electrical devices, textiles, foam furniture, and insulating foams. Polymer components are also found in clothing, cookware, and food. We will address these products later on the chemicals used in these polymers diffuse from them and enter the air around us (Beall, 1981). They can corrode our mucous membranes, irritate our skin, and eyes and even damage DNA. In humans these chemicals have been linked to altering behavior, memory, learning, and possible links to cancer. Animal studies have shown endocrine disruption and fetal deficits.
As you sit on your couch or other treated furniture, the weight from your body and subsequent movements launches another cloud of volatile organic chemicals (voc’s), into your air space. Your rug has already made sure you inhaled some these into your body, by emanating toxins that were either collected from the environment, dragged in on the soles of shoes/ bare feet or installed in production. Most carpets/rugs not only contain BFR’s but also collect and store voc’s
Synthetic rugs are known to contain and off gas elements of benzene, formaldehyde, styrene, and neurotoxins such as Toluene & Xylene. Toluene is an “Aromatic Hydrocarbon” This is found in paints, varnishes, glues, enamels, & lacquers. There was a study conducted which (Beall, 1981) detected toluene in more then 50% of indoor air samples. Its chemical structure is similar to Benzene, which worst side affect is death. Toluene can cause CNS depression, psychosis, and liver & kidney damage.
Another extreme danger is the presence of formaldehyde found in the resins of particleboard, insulation, plywood, and numerous other products. Formaldehyde reacts with our proteins and nucleic acids to convert to formic acid & Co2. It can damage our DNA as well. Off gassing has been a steady problem in mobile homes for decades leaving a trail of destruction behind. A study conducted in 2004’ (Pinkerton, 2004) demonstrated a two-fold increase in the mortality of garment workers from leukemia, with ten or more year’s exposure. Another study conducted by the National Cancer Institute observed that factory workers that produced formaldehyde and its resin (those with high exposures) had a 37% greater risk of death from all blood & lymphatic cancers (Rabin, 2009) http://www.nytimes.com/2009/05/13/health/13cancer.html. Some of the symptoms from both toluene and formaldehyde are fatigue, weakness, and confusion. These symptoms have been documented after eight hours of high exposures. As previously mentioned, glues contain hazardous chemicals.
The carpet backing has an applied adhesive, which contains 4-phenylcyclohexene (4-PC). This is an eye and respiratory tract irritant that can also affect the central nervous system. Small chronic exposures can accumulate and lead to very serious conditions. The next time you see a baby crawling on a rug, remember in reality that innocent baby is crawling on a medically hazardous mine field, how frightening is that!
Research was conducted, which collected and analyzed dust, which collects in rugs. (Ward et al 2009) This study found concentrations of organochlorine chemicals: six polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) congeners and the pesticides α- and γ-chlordane, p,p′-DDT (dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane), p,p′-DDE dichlorodiphenyldichloroethylene), methoxychlor, and pentachlorophenol. These chemicals individually and as a whole adversely affect our health in various ways. Some are human carcinogens while others damage DNA. Our immune and central nervous systems, our brain, kidneys, liver, and body organs/systems can experience damage. Other studies shown that DDE (Broken-down from DDT) is directly linked to obesity (Karmaus et al 2009). There are other chemicals that also can lead to obesity. Chemicals also cause havoc by disrupting the Hypothalamus leading to hypothalamic dysregulation. The hormone called “Leptin” function is to travel through the body to measure nutrition amounts(Yoder, 2009). Certain chemicals such as mycotoxins prevent leptin from getting the nutritional information and delivering it back to the hypothalamus, tricking the brain into thinking we need to eat more leading to obesity (Shoemaker 2005, Loyd R.). This is only one path, which causes weight problems. Intestinal damage due to toxic chemicals causes food digestion and absorption issues. This also leads to increased fat production not to mention fat cells also store toxins. Pesticides have been linked very strongly to Parkinson’s disease and other studies link pesticide exposures to breast and prostrate cancer as well as immune system disorders.
The Bathroom! The Kitchen! The Laundry Room! :
The purpose to taking a shower or bath is to wash off dirt and harmful chemicals, which has collected on our skin and hair from our environment. Are we washing them off or just replacing them? Stores carry a endless variety of shampoos and soaps. They may have very appealing scents that draw us to purchase them. Claudia Miller an Associate Professor at the University of Texas Health Center stated that “several studies that 15 to 30% of the general population report some sensitivity to chemicals, including fragrances, and 4-6% report that a chemical intolerance has a major impact on their life”
( Environmental Health Perspectives * Volume 106, Number 12, December 1998 ).unfortunately, the statistics keep rising. Most fragrances are not made up of oil from flowers like roses, lavender or herbs; they are chemicals that the manufactures developed to mimic certain scents, which allure us to buy them. What chemicals are in these products? Toluene is found in many perfumes (Rubin, 2009 ). In fact perfume may contain as many as 600 or more individual ingredients with hundreds being known toxins. Thousands of chemicals are used in fragrance products, only a handful have been tested for safety. In 1991 the EPA found Toluene in every fragrance sample they tested. The American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, & Immunology lists perfume as a common trigger of asthma attacks. Our personal care and household cleaning products may contain Benzyl alcohol, Ethanol, Methylene Chloride, Linalool, Acetone, & Camphor, etc… Associated with these chemicals is ataxia, impaired vision, eye, ear, & throat irritation, respiratory problems, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, hypertension, headaches, irritability, liver & kidney disease, cancer, and the list goes on as well. Commercials telling how silky and soft that fabric softeners make the clothes we wear feel and showing a baby smiling, is another travesty. Additional chemicals that can be found in these are Benzyl Acetate, Chloroform, & Alpha Terpineol. Professor Anne Steineman of the University of Washington , conducted research, which revealed that nearly 100 volatile organic compounds, were emitted from common everyday products (1998 Health House Institute). This was just from six commonly used products, which included laundry detergent, fabric softeners and air fresheners. Central nervous system disorders, and various cancers have been associated with said exposures. 95% of chemicals used in fragrances are synthetic compounds derived from petroleum,. they include benzene derivatives, aldehydes and many other known toxins and sensitizers – capable of causing cancer, birth defects, central nervous system disorders and allergic reactions. Neurotoxins: At Home and the Workplace, Report by the Committee on Science & Technology, U.S. House of Representatives, Sept. 16, 1986. (Report 99-827). There are so many safer choices that can be made by using products that are non-toxic and pesticide free
A seriously dangerous element that once again has made the headlines is Bisphenol A (BPA). BPA is used in the linings of cans and plastic bottles to give them strength. Japan has successfully stopped the use of BPA in many of their products. According to a report, the CDC estimated that 95% of adults levels of BPA in their bodies.(Sattler Report on Public Health Concerns – Phthalates and Bisphenol A) Researchers have confirmed that it diffuses from the containers and enters both food & beverages, even at cold temperatures. There is mounting scientific research which links BPA to breast cancer, testicular cancer, diabetes, hyperactivity, obesity, low sperm count, miscarriage and other reproductive problems in laboratory animals. More recent studies using human data have linked BPA to heart disease and diabetes. The Harvard School of Public Health did a study, which found a 69% increase in the amount of BPA in urine from those who drank from plastic bottles (Layton, 2009). Currently there is legislation being introduced to have BPA taken out of baby products but as expected the manufacturers are fighting back hard. One of their possible plans is to place a pregnant woman on TV to tell mothers that they will not be able to afford to feed their babies if this is done. Not only do we have to worry about BPA, but also Dioxins. Dioxins are prevalent in many food & beverage products that are contained in plastic. In the water bottle that you bought to avoid the toxic chlorine and fluoride not to mention heavy metals and medicines contained in our drinking water, there are dangerous toxins this product is causing to enter your body. Another study has shown that dioxin ingestion leads to metabolic syndrome (Uemura, 2009) . Basically high blood pressure, elevated tryglycerides, and glucose intolerance are all associated. A quick point to mention is that science has shown that fluoride is hazardous to human health and may actually cause tooth damage. In 2008 it was published that shown that fluoride can interfere with protein synthesis which then leads to ameloblast function (cells that deposit tooth enamel) impairing enamel development possibly leading to dental fluorosis (Sharma et al 2008). Fluorosis is a health condition by receiving too much fluoride, especially in children. A direct quote about dental fluorosis listed at Fluoride alert .org: “It is a toxic effect and a cosmetic effect. These are not mutually exclusive. It’s toxic and it’s cosmetic” per Dr. Arvid Carlsson, Nobel Prize Laureate in Medicine/Physiology (2000). After we get past the teeth, now the rest of the body might be in danger. (http://www.fluoridealert.org/dental-fluorosis.htm). Dr. Michael B. Schachter in 1196 wrote an article stating according to the handbook “ Clinical Toxicology of Commercial Products fluoride is more poisonous then lead and less slightly then arsenic. “According to the Physicians Desk Reference, “in hypersensitive individuals, fluorides occasionally cause skin eruptions such as atopic dermatitis, eczema, or urticaria. Gastric distress, headache, and weakness have also been reported. He also lists a confirmation made in 1989 by Argonne National Laboratory “Fluoride has the ability to transform normal cells into cancer cells. In other words, millions of dollars of your tax money is being spent to poison your water supply without any benefit what so ever”. (http://www.healthy.net/scr/article.asp?Id=540)
Besides packaging ingredients can also be poisonous. Synthetic food coloring, artificial flavorings, preservatives, etc. all cause health damage. Artificial flavoring actually represents a set of chemicals that companies use to mimic real food tastes. It’s also important to recognize what we cook with or in is just as important. Using utensils made of plastic such as spatulas, ladles, forks, spoons, knives, and cups also place toxins in our food, which we then consume. Items stored in plastic also add to the fray. Remember when the news alerted the public about cooking with plastic in microwaves? Kellogg Swab PhD. associate professor at John Hopkins stated, “Whenever you heat something you increase the likelihood of pulling chemicals out. This is the same process we use in the lab to extract chemicals from materials we want to analyze. Chemicals can be released from plastic packaging materials like the kinds used in some microwave meals. The same can occur with the use of polycarbonate plastic eating utensils”. So it is important to know that using plastic made items whether a spoon with hot soup or a spatula to make eggs, you are now ingesting toxic chemicals.
What you cook in/with matters! Using non-stick cookware can lead to serious health and birth issues. Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), is in non-stick Teflon coatings along with other flouropolymers. In 1981 PFOA was found in the fetus of a West Virginian woman. (Environmental Group 2004) http://www.ewg.org/node/16471. Infants born with PFOA’s in the umbilical cord serum at high concentrations, had lower birth weights. ”PFOS, PFOA, and related polyfluoroalkyl compounds (PFCs) that can be transformed into these chemicals in the environment are used in a wide range of consumer applications, including oil and water repellents for fabric, apparel, and carpets, and paper coatings such as fast-food wrappers. The chemicals have been found in the blood of people throughout the world”. (Environmental Health Perspectives Volume 115, Number 11, November 2007.) These chemicals can all have toxic effects on reproductive and developmental organs, liver, and the immune system as shown in animal studies per a report in the Telegraph. UK 2009. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/healthnews/4374105/Common-chemicals-found-in-non-stick-frying-pans-can-harm-fertility.html.
It is important to know the source of our daily food supplies. Unless that morning glass of orange juice is certified organic it too is most likely tainted. Fresh orange juice should only last for a couple of days (Sampson, 2009). In order to prolong the spoil by date, the orange juice companies store the juice in one million gallon tanks. They put it through de-aeration, which strips it of all its oxygen. This also extracts its flavor and aroma. The manufacturers must find a way to re-flavor the juice. Flavor packs are added which contain chemicals. One of which contains Ethyl Butyrate. So even our orange juice, which is marketed to protect our health, just offers another serving of toxic chemicals. The definition for ethyl butyrate from Wikipedia is: “Ethyl butyrate, also known as ethyl butanoate, or butyric ether, is an ester with the chemical formula CH3CH2CH2COOCH2CH3, with one oxygen having a double bond. It is soluble in propylene glycol, paraffin oil and kerosene. It is commonly used as artificial flavoring such as pineapple flavoring in alcoholic beverages (i.e. martinis, daiquiris etc); solvent; in perfumery products and as a plasticizer for cellulose. In addition, Ethyl butyrate is often also added to orange juice, as most associate its odor with that of fresh orange juice”. Esters by the way are also used in plastics, resins, plasticizers, & lacquer solvents.
This is not the end of this story however. “In the processing, the whole orange is put into the machine. Enzymes are added to get as much oil as possible out of the skin. Oranges are a very heavily sprayed crop. These sprays are cholinesterase inhibitors, which are real neurotoxins. When they put the oranges in the vats and squeeze them, all those pesticides go into the juice. What about the orange peel used for cattle feed? The dried leftover citrus peel is processed into cakes, which are still loaded with cholinesterase inhibitors and organophosphates. Mark Purdey in England has shown these neurotoxins are correlated with “Mad Cow Disease” (Bovine Spongiform Encephalitis or BSE)”. This was taken directly from an article written by Sally Fallon President of the Weston A. Price foundation who does extensive research with Mary G. Enig, PhD (nutritionist). http://www.westonaprice.org/modernfood/dirty-secrets.html
Lets us not forget fungicides like paraquat and maneb which, are sprayed on our crops and that we ingest through eating. These too are linked to several medical conditions and are extremely toxic. If they are able to protect against & kill fungi cells, then ours will also be affected. Fungi cells are structurally stronger then ours. They contain a cellular wall as our only contain a membrane.
I could write extensively about our yards, public parks and outdoor environment as well but for now I would like to share the following important information with you. Pesticides were produced to kill (cide means kill). “Pesticides including but not limited to herbicides, insecticides, fungicides and organophosphates are known toxins and harm more than their intended target. Many organophosphates are potent neurotoxins, functioning by inhibiting the action of acetylcholinesterase (AChE) in nerve cells. Pesticides break down in the environment differently depending on chemical composition and exposures. Many times breakdown products are more toxic than the original product. The International Agency for Research on Cancer has linked more than 400 different chemicals to an increased cancer risk. Among them: Pesticides—Brain cancer, breast cancer, colon cancer, leukemia, lung cancer, multiple myeloma, non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, prostate cancer, rectal cancer, skin cancer. ( Clapp RW, Jacobs MM, Loechler EL. Environmental and occupational causes of cancer: new evidence 2005-2007. Rev Environ Health. 2008; 23:1-37: http://www.cancermonthly.com/iNP/view.asp?ID=224 ).
The lawn pesticides, mancozeb and chlorothalonil have been classified by the EPA as “probable” cancer causing chemicals in humans, as they have been found to cause cancer in animals. Mancozeb has also been found to react with sunlight to form a new compound the EPA categorizes as a “known” human carcinogen. The common lawn pesticide 2,4-D has been shown to increase the risk of lymphatic cancer in farmers six times the normal rate, according to a National Cancer Institute report. (Sinclair, W. 18 Studies Show Why Pesticides Are More Dangerous than Previously Realized. Tampa, Florida) http://www.toxicsinfo.org/Lawn/Pesticides%20&%20Cancer.htm.
At least two peer-reviewed studies have described associations between autism rates and pesticides (D’Amelio et al 2005; Roberts EM et al 2007 in journal Environmental Health Perspectives.). It is estimated that 300,000 farm workers suffer acute pesticide poisoning each year in the United States. No one is checking chronic contamination. http://www.mcsbeaconofhope.com/statistics%202009.htm
A National Cancer Institute study found that children whose parents used store-bought home and garden pesticides are up to seven times more likely to develop childhood leukemia. Studies have also linked pesticide exposure to breast and prostate cancer, Parkinson’s disease and immune system disorders.
According to physician and medical researcher, Dr. Case Ingram, “Repeated exposure to pesticides is life-threatening, because these chemicals poison the brain and nervous system, disrupting their impulses to vital internal organs such as the heart, lung, and kidneys. Yet even a single exposure can kill.” He goes on to warn, ” Remember that pesticides are fulminate nervous system poisons. Many of them are molecularly the same as the nerve gases synthesized during the World War II” (Life-Saving Cures, 2000)
Accordingly to David Pimentel, PhD, Cornell University entomologist, less then one hundredth of one percent of sprayed pesticides reach their intended target using aerial methods of application. Pesticides cause serious health problems including deaths, toxicity, neurological effects, reduced immune responses, learning disabilities, and others (Pimentel, 2004). He also mentions the dangers of using DEET. Rashes, restlessness, lethargy, confusion, slurred speech, clumsiness, seizures, and in some cases death, has been caused due to its use. He warns that it should never be applied to the skin, only on clothing. I would say that even here, one could be inhaling its elements, so why take the risk. Each year worldwide there are 26 million pesticide poisonings with 220,000 deaths (Richter, 2002). In the U.S., NCFH (2004) reports there are 300,000 nonfatal pesticide poisonings. http://www.mcsbeaconofhope.com/statistics%202009.htm
Childhood cancer incidence is increasing at 0.8%, with the increase in incidence since 1973 for acute lymphocytic leukemia = 62%, brain cancer = 50%, and bone cancer = 40%. The main cause of these cancers is paternal and maternal exposure to toxic substances (2,140, etc.). Known common causes of leukemia include pesticides (7,55,140,144), maternal exposure to x-rays, and nitrite treated hot dogs and meats. Known common causes of brain cancer include pesticides, nitrite treated hot dogs, and lindane. Pesticide exposure has also been found to have positive associations with prostrate cancer, kidney and pancreatic cancer, etc. ( The Health Affects of Pesticides Bernard Windham Ed.)
Ward Stone, a wildlife biologist, discovered while testing for West Nile Virus in birds, that most of the bird deaths were actually attributable to pesticide poisoning!
Exposure to Household Pesticides Could Double Child Leukemia – A new study in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine reports that study children with frequent exposure to household insecticides used on plants, lawns and in head headlice shampoo had twice the risk of developing childhood leukemia. http://rd.bcentral.com/?ID=3665522&s=1092317
Two ICD codes pertaining to pesticides:
989.3 Toxic Effect Of Organophosphate And Carbamate Carbaryl; Dichlorvos; Malathion; Parathion; Phorate; Phosdrin
989.4 Toxic Effect Of Other Pesticides, NEC Mixtures of insecticides
Besides the obvious conclusion to avoid consuming toxic chemicals, it is important to learn what foods can compromise our immune systems as well. Cereal grains contain toxins and elements that can contribute and cause medical conditions. Deoxynivalenol (DON) is a mycotoxin (vomitoxin) that has been found to damage the intestine affecting human health (Pinton, 2009). Patulin is another mycotoxin found in corn. Wheat also carries these mycotoxins and also can contain T2 toxins, Zearalone, Fumonisin, Vomitoxin and Aflatoxins as well. These all can lead to intestinal damage as well as a catechism of bodily assaults that leads to immune system, central nervous system, kidney, liver, & DNA damage. Wheat, barley, rye, kamut, and oats, also contain gluten.
Gluten is a protein which our damaged intestines cannot breakdown thus it passes into our blood stream whole. Inside this protein lies another protein called Gliadin. This is what Celiac disease refers to. Simply put, Celiac disease causes a violent immune response to gluten. Gluten intolerance is similar (though some medical practitioners view them differently) and once again, our health can be compromised. An article in the Staten Island Advance (NY) in 2008, reported the rise in persons with Celiac disease. What researchers, knowledgeable doctors, and many of the toxically injured know, is that gluten intolerance is a hallmark of mold toxicity (Shoemaker, 2005) and many of the toxically injured that I have interviewed also cannot tolerate gluten. Is it a wonder, with the increases in chemical exposures that gluten intolerance is on the rise? Some are making the link that individuals who have issues with gluten might be caused by the exposure toxic chemicals. It is not a leap to come to this conclusion.
Many of the elements and situations already mentioned also apply to our bedrooms. Your mattress also contains harmful elements as they are usually made from synthetic materials. Without getting into too much detail, just remember synthetic is another word for plastic. Plastic is just finely stripped down into threads and then used to weave into material used to make bed components, couches, shower curtains, and even clothes. Not only is the material dangerous, BFR’s are also applied to mattresses & box springs. Much safer alternatives are products made of organic cotton, wool, and other organic and non/least toxic materials.
With the rise in individuals with diabetes, skin disorders, ADHD & ADD, insomnia, behavioral issues, chemical sensitivity, hypertension, COPD, asthma, Fibromyalgia, Leaky Gut. Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, autism, cancer and other diseases and conditions presenting themselves daily, we must look at the possible causes and act to circumvent its impact on those in the present and future generations. Unnecessary use of and exposures to toxic chemicals, air pollution and indoor mold growth, are destroying us as a species.
Laws must be enacted to protect the health and well being of all our children (our future leaders), men and women, the environment and our natural resources before it is too late! Many are not aware of, or truly believe the dangers these elements pose. It is common for some to say, “those products cannot be that dangerous or our government would not allow them to be on the market”, or “what are you going to do”? My answer is: There is quite a bit of discrepancy between what consumers are led to believe is a safe product and what they are actually getting. I investigate and then I make safer choices. It is easy to shrug your shoulders and ponder as though you will be all right because you do not feel any adverse affects…yet! Most think this until the day they start to feel a little ill, and realize they too may have had one too many exposures and now have joined the toxically ill population. Anyone who has symptoms listed in this paper might already be experiencing chemical illness (Toxic Injury). As quick as a light switch, your whole world could be permanently altered by chemical exposure(s). Please do not let this happen to you! The word “Toxic” by very definition relates to danger. What has become the norm mat not be what is normal. It is hard to find someone without some kind of condition that can be directly or indirectly connected to environmental exposures, be it dry skin, vision problems, or more serious conditions like diabetes or asthma. We see it so much that we accept it as an every day normal occurrence. No! This cannot be right! Is it really normal for so many to have a medical condition or ailment? Take a hard look at what is prevalent in our society. Look at the one very intrusive and common denominator. Look at just about every product you obtain from your local stores and what it contains or is treated with. It is toxic chemicals! It is reasonable to conclude that at the very least, even if our bodies can breakdown small amounts of toxins, it is being forced to work endlessly, processing these very dangerous hazards. Our bodies were not meant to be toxic waste dumps. Let’s look at some of the obvious, which is commonly accepted or over looked:
ALL cleaning products are HARMFUL if swallowed. As a matter of safety, all labels contain a “signal word” that designates the level of toxicity of the product.
“DANGER!” indicates the product is highly toxic (much less than a teaspoon can harm or kill an adult),
“CORROSIVE!” means that the product can burn the skin or eyes.
“FLAMMABLE!” means that the product has a high flash point and can be ignited by a spark or open flame contacting its vapors.
“WARNING!” means the product is moderately toxic (about a teaspoon to an ounce can harm or kill an adult).
“CAUTION!” means a product is slightly toxic (more than an ounce can harm or produce a toxic effect in an adult). It MUST be noted that children are far more susceptible to being harmed or killed by these type of products compared to adults.
Perhaps your budget will not allow you to make all the necessary changes at once, but doing a little at a time can make a positive difference. If we stop purchasing these toxic items, the manufacturers will have to stop producing them and start manufacturing environmentally safe and user-friendly products, if they want to stay in business. Air purifiers at one time were considered luxury items. As this paper and peer reviewed research demonstrates, there are toxic chemicals present in our everyday dietary, personal care, and cleaning products, found throughout our homes, schools, places of employment, and places of worship. They are in the air we breathe, food we eat, and the water we drink. Recently the EPA produced a report, which stated that ground level ozone is at an all time high. With the bombardment of all these toxins, air purifiers are no longer luxuries, in my opinion, they are mandatory. Once it is loud and clear that we are no longer willing to pay to be poisoned, then things will change at an even quicker pace. It all starts with you! Your health, your loved ones, and future generations are all at risk.
Stop the Poisoning ~ Make safer choices. If you haven’t already done so, please sign and then make others aware of the “World~Wide” Toxic Injury Awareness & Education Petition for Proclamation at: http://www.mcsbeaconofhope.com/.
I hope this information helps to alert people so that initiatives are taken to protect themselves, correct this situation, and provide help to those who have already fell victim.
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I am a 33 year old mother who was exposed to mold since childhood. The apartments I live in have a severe mold issue. I have been hospitalized on several occasions to symptoms similar to a stroke. Doctors cannot seem to find what’s wrong with me. I told them I suspect mold and the all say its not possible. I have fibromyalsia, and recently discovered after emaliling a utube doctor I am gluten sensitive. I notice if I smell a strong odor I immediately get sick. I wish there were more studies like this one. I think their is a lot of ignorance to the toxins that come from mold and how they can hinder your immune system. Thank you for this article. Makes me feel relevant.