Monday, November 22, 2010

Danish MCS rant in OTT

Coming in the December 2010 issue of Our Toxic Times is a good rant about Multiple Chemical Sensitivities and how a Danish organization that was intended to research the connections between MCS and chemicals has taken a turn against there even being such a connection.

The article goes well beyond Denmark's problem. It also talks about the chemical industry's created replacement name for MCS, Idiopathic Environmental Intolerance (IEI). A name that is intended to separate the word "chemicals" from the illness, and was not and is not promoted or approved by the World Health Organization (WHO), despite some claims to the contrary.

The article is very readable and well thought out.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Surviving Chemical Sensitivity book now at N.E.E.D.S.

The book by Dr. Robert Mayer "Strategies for Surviving Chemical Sensitivity - the Basics" is now also for sale at N.E.E.D.S. as well as at

Our feedback on the book has been nearly 100% positive. the one not-so-positive comment was a little odd: "It's just basic stuff." Considering the book's title, why would you expect anything else?

I'll say it again, if you or someone you know is suffering from MCS, especially someone relatively new to MCS, this book is a must.

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

A hotel suitable for MCS

Sometimes we find good news. Here is part of a message from one of our members about finding a hotel in Seattle that she could stay in:

"I thought I would pass this on. The Washington Toxics Coalition recommended the Hyatt at Olive 8 in Seattle (Tel: 206-695-1234) as a possible non-toxic hotel room. They are environmentally friendly, with sustainable designs, saving measures and healthy products. From a search of the hotel, I found that their housekeeping staff uses chemical-free cleaners. When I called, they said they use cleaners, but would be willing to make accommodations. From calling CIIN today, I got the tip to ask for this, which I greatly appreciated. They are more than willing to steam clean the room and use only chemical-free products."

No guarantees, of course, but if it works for one chemically sensitive person, the odds look good for it working for more of us. And it indicates that asking for these kinds of accommodations is getting less weird in the eyes of the "normal" public.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Info sources

This is just a quick note about a couple good, and not very well known, web sites for information for those who are chemically injured or just chemically aware.
A great site for information on chemicals. We at Chemical Injury Information Network use it a lot.
Also a great site, but for news related to food and water safety.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Could GM Foods Reduce Over-Population??

Most people who give it serious thought know GM foods are a crap-shoot -- not enough research to be sure they are safe in the long run. And then I ran across this new (new to me) worry in the Organic Consumers Association newsletter #226 (May 28, 2010):

Genetically Modified Foods Could Cause Long-Term Sterility
"We failed to get cubs from these pairs, which were fed with GM foodstuffs. It was proved that these pairs lost their ability to give birth to their cubs."

This quote is Dr. Alexei Surov, a Russian biologist describing the results of a study of hamsters fed genetically modified soy for two years over three generations. By the third generation, most the hamsters lost the ability to have babies. The pups who were born suffered slower growth and a high mortality rate.

You can track down the whole story via the Organic Consumers Association.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Natural does not mean non-toxic

Again today something popped up that made me want to write a quick word about natural things that many people think of as non-toxic. Wrong! At least if you are chemically sensitive, that is a dangerous assumption.

Mint, cedar, lavender, menthol, pine.

These are examples of things that probably seem pleasant and generally harmless. But for the chemically injured/sensitive these things can be anywhere from irritating to downright harmful. Can be — but not for everyone with MCS. I know people with chemical sensitivities who have no trouble with some or all of these materials. I also know people who really get their asses kicked by them. They and dozens of other innocent-seeming things, like essential oils, need to be treated as guilty of being problematic until proven innocent.

Just today Cynthia dealt with someone who put cedar shakes on their house and now has a serious problem on his hands. It's going to take a lot of work to keep their house usable to him, and it is possible they will have to leave the house for good.

Such simple mistakes can have such mammoth consequences. Protect yourself with caution. Don't be scarred, but do be skeptical.

Monday, July 26, 2010

To fight the SPAM problem at CIIN

At CIIN we have gotten more and more unwanted/crap/malicious e-mail to the point that we have had to activate an anti-spam program called BoxTrapper. As a practical matter, that means messages sent to us will probably get an automated message requiring the sender to simply hit "reply" in order to prove the message comes from a person and not a program.

It is an inconvenience, but once the person replies to the automated message, their original message goes through — no further action needed. Also, this a one-time thing. The sender should not have to do this again unless they send from a different account.

By the way, this has dramatically cut down on the junk e-mails we get.

This brings up a point to consider, do not just assume that your e-mails get to their destination. BoxTrapper is one of many anti-spam programs out there. Some are better and more convenient than others. If a message is important and you get no response, follow up in some way. There are too many ways an e-mail can go astray.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Surviving MCS

Dr.Robert Mayer's book on the basics of surviving MCS seems to have hit the spot with many people. Right now it is only available through CIIN, the book's publisher. If you know of anyone in need of basic info on dealing with life with chemical sensitivities, point them to us at 406-547-2255, or It could be a great help to them.

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Wednesday, July 14, 2010

The Basics of Surviving Chemical Sensitivity

CIIN has started selling their new book by Dr. Robert S. Mayer, "Strategies for Surviving Chemical Sensitivity — the Basics." It is the book MCS sufferers have been needing forever.

The book comes from Dr. Mayer's own trail-and-error experiences living with MCS as well as from tons of suggestions from over a thousand people who responded to the question, "What Works?" Some of these suggestions have also appeared in the monthly newsletter, "Our Toxic Times."

Anyone who is stricken with chemical sensitivities needs help just learning how to make the knid of changes in their lives that will allow them to survive. It can be done, but only those who have gone before can be expected to know the tricks. I wish like hell my wife had this book in 1987.

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Thursday, July 08, 2010

MCS = redox damage

It seems there is research out of Italy linking Multiple Chemical Sensitivities with damage to the redox system. More on this will appear in Our Toxic Times when the research becomes available here. Until we see the research, that is all for now on this subject.

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Thursday, June 17, 2010

It's NOT an allergy

Over and Over again people with MCS (Multiple Chemical Sensitivities) try to equate their illness with allergies. That may be handy at times, but it can be dangerous.

When MCS is treated as an allergy, dangerous consequences can ensue. People, including MCS sufferers, tend to dismiss allergic reactions (other than anaphylactic shock) as inconvenient but harmless. Wrong!

An MCS reaction isn't an IgE-mediated event, as an allergic reaction is, and while further damage to the redox system, central nervous system, and/or immune system is not a certainty, it is definitely a possibility.

All MCS sufferers have redox and central nervous system damage, and 88% of MCS sufferers have developed 2 or more autoimmune conditions, such as lupus, multiple sclerosis, thyroid conditions, etc.

MCS is damage! MCS reactions are dangerous!

An allergic reaction is the immune system misidentifying a substance and mounting an inappropriate response. An MCS reaction is different — dangerously different — and needs to be addressed differently, treated differently, and thought about differently.

Monday, March 08, 2010

Worry over toxins seems universal

The U.S. is definitely not the only country where parents and others worry about slowly killing or maiming their children. We ran a brief article in Our Toxic Times recently about Viet Nam's actions to cut down on toxic toys and clothing, and now I ran across an editorial from Pakistan about the lack of laws to protect their children.

As more and more countries rise to the battle, we slowly build momentum in the effort to make this world a cleaner/safer place for us humans.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

More exposure, more damage, more symptoms

It seems that periodically this must be said to those with Multiple Chemical Sensitivities (MCS): Do not challenge toxic environments if you are chemically sensitive! Do not go to a movie under the assumption that you will just put up with feeling crappy for a few days. Do not go to the hair dresser thinking it will be worth a few days of being sick to look good. Do not put yourself in contaminated areas thinking you can put up with the reactions -- except in an emergency, of course.

It is sad, depressing, inconvenient for sure, but each exposure beats up on the body a little more, and each exposure risks significantly adding to the damage that is MCS.

Whether you call it MCS or chemical hyper-sensitivity or environmental illness, the illness is caused by damage to the body's systems that are supposed to protect you. To put it super simply, more exposure, more damage, more symptoms.

Over the 20 years Chemical Injury Information Network has been in existence, we have talked to thousands of people who tell us some version of the refrain: That place or product didn't use to bother me. MCS is certainly progressive if exposures continue. Don't take chances if it is not absolutely necessary.