When I started this blog 8 months ago we had just received our official diagnosis of mycotoxicosis. My hope was to raise awareness about the hazards of indoor mold. I did not know we would soon add the diagnosis of multiple chemical sensitivity. MCS often grows out of mold exposure because the toxic load becomes so high that the body is no longer able to detoxify any insult to the system.
I remember the day I first became aware of our chemical struggle. It was January 31st of this year. We were moving into a new rental house the next day. Chris and I had been apart for 6 weeks. He was driving a U-Haul full of new mattresses and other belongings from Colorado, to meet us in Tucson the next morning. We spent the day packing. We decided to go to the park before heading out to dinner. The kids rolled in the grass at the park. I'm not sure what game it was, but the 3 youngest were rolling in the grass.
Gathered around the table at Olive Garden, I noticed the kids' eyes redden. Really redden. Brandon looked pale and put his head on the table. Kaitlyn was groaning, and Colin had a severe headache. I couldn't figure out what was wrong. Our spirits were high. Eating out was a rare treat, and Dad was coming! Finally, I looked at Megan and we both knew: chemicals on the grass.
Thus I now hope to bring awareness to the hazards of chemicals as well as indoor mold. Remember, everyone can benefit from lightening their toxic load. If you're in good health you will be in better health by using less toxic products and eating a healthier diet. If you are experiencing baffling symptoms and struggling with your health (or your children are), it may be worth a look at chemical and environmental issues.
My favorite resource on this subject is a tiny book titled "Chemical Sensitivity: Environmental diseases and pollutants - how they hurt us, how to deal with them" by Dr. Sherry A. Rogers. Dr. Rogers is board certified by the American Academy of Family Practice and the American Academy of Environmental Medicine and is a fellow of the American College of Allergy and Immunology.
I recently bought another one of her books, "The EI Syndrome - An Rx for Environmental Illness." Unfortunately I bought it used (online). I ought to know by now that we can't buy used books. Books attract mold spores and hang on to chemicals. I opened it last week, smelled it, and immediately and ironically tossed it onto our back porch. There it sits, a book on environmental toxins that I can't read.
Dr. Rogers' explanation of toxic overload is the best I've read. "Each of us has the ability to metabolize (or break down or get rid of) foreign chemicals (xenobiotics), a process known as xenobiotic detoxification." Glutathione is a big part of the detoxifying, conjugation process. (I nebulize glutathione while working on my blog each day.) Rogers continues, "It costs the body energy and nutrients in order to make glutathione. The bottom line is that the work of detoxification uses up, and loses forever, energy and nutrients in the process of detoxifying chemicals that we breathe and eat each day. But much of the time we are unaware of even being exposed to any chemicals."
This is why I'm grateful for our symptoms upon exposure. It helps us avoid things that could be harming us without our awareness. And it brings me back to our role as canaries. We can help the coal miners of the 21st century.