Some areas of nutrition are virtually universally agreed upon. All experts would hold that if an individual were to be fed a diet (artificially constructed) which would be totally lacking in Vitamin C, Vitamin B1, and Vitamin B3, there would be a virtual certainty of the development of Scurvy, Beriberi, and Pellagra.
Other aspects of nutrition are not so well defined. As a rule of thumb, the present author would suggest that individuals who do not have specific health concerns in the areas of breathing difficulty, becoming pregnant, autoimmune diseases, rare types of infections, inflamations and irritations, skin problems, digestive problems and mental disorders might well discount most of the concerns in the area of environmental toxin. However, those afflicted by any of the above situations would do well to be concerned with the sea of toxins in which we live. There are virtually thousands and thousands of articles, reports and other types of evidence indicating that sensitive individuals may be at risk from various environmental factors. What is the logical approach for those who wish to minimize this type of exposure?
Food Intake -
Food Intake is a major area in the ingestion of toxic elements. A close reading of labels is essential and individuals should avoid all foods which contain artifical flavors, artificial preservatives, artificial colors and similar substances. It is always best to use fresh produce as opposed to prepared or preserved food. It is generally wise for sensitive individuals to avoid red meats especially in light of the large amount of meat which has been treated with hormones, pesticides, growth factors and antibiotics. The more natural a diet is, the less chance there will be for environmental damage.
Personal Hygiene - There are literally thousands of items which are used in personal hygiene - soaps, hair sprays, deodorants, etc., etc. The best policy here is to minimize as much as possible the use of such elements. The author recently spoke to a leading Ophthalmologist, who dealt with a patient who developed an extemely serious inflamation of the eyes. The physician finally traced this problem down to the use of a hair spray, which when discontinued resulted in the patients recovery. When the lady in question resumed the use of this hair spray six months later, her condition returned. She then discontinued the use of the offending material and her eyesight was saved. The best soaps and shampoos would seem to be baby soaps and shampoos containing the least amount of irritants.
Household Cleaners, Etc. - While it may seem hard to believe, many of the household cleaners, detergents and soaps, etc., commonly used can pose problems to sensitive individuals.
There comes to mind a case of a person who developed severe stomach problems traced to the fact that the detergent used to wash the dishes was quite irritating and not completely rinsed off. It is important to note that there is almost always a film left on the dishes after washing by hand or machine and an extra rinsing in the machine with water only or an extra hand rinsing will in most cases remove the majority of the detergent.
Rug cleaners often present serious problems to some people and indeed, while the author is fond of the designs found in beautiful rugs, it is probably a wise step for sensitive individuals to live in a rug-free house, as well as a drug-free house (remember: narcotics are toxins too).
Over The Counter (OTC) Medications - Americans are in the habit of utilizing a huge amount of OTC medications. Many of these may be harmless, while others may present serious problems. To cite a common example, the universally used pain killer aspirin may produce severe allergic manifestations in certain sensitive individuals.
Almost all the liquid medications used for fever in children are loaded with artificial dyes, colors, preservatives and sugar. It would seem a pity that some enterprising pharmaceutical manufacturer does not see fit to produce a fever medication for children which would be free of these substances. A rule of thumb here would be that sensitive individuals try to avoid as much as possible OTC medications unless they are most essential and are relatively free of toxic elements.
Very often a nutritional subsitute can be found for various medications. (The author is happy to recommend such substitutes to those who send questions to this magazine).
Other Sources of Problems - The widely used toxic chemicals prepared for the control of lawn pests and unwanted grasses may provoke great difficulty in sensitive individuals. This also holds true for the various sprays used to control hornets, wasps, etc. Those who have houses with lawns and are suffering from unusual problems are well advised (and the author does love a beautiful lawn) to replace the lawn with decorative pebbles or avoid the use of these pesticides, sprays and defoliants.
Toxic Emissions - Individuals living in an area which features chemical plants or heavy highway traffic which gives off toxic emissions might have to consider moving to a less polluted area. Another area of concern may be those living in close proximity to high tension electricity wires. Here too, where there is a family history of malignancies, moving may be a viable alternative.
An especially complex area involves the potential injection of toxins in infants via vaccination and innoculations of childhood. The vast majority of physicians approve these procedures. However, there is a significant minority of concerned professionals who believe that the large increase in such maladies as Autism, Childhood Asthma, and Youthful Overweight may be related to these vaccines. The final decision here must be made by the parents after consultation with the physician. However, one area which would seem sensible is for parents to insist on the use of single dose (rather than multiple dose) vials. This is because single dose vials usually do not contain mercury-containing preservatives found in the multi-dose vials. Mercury is a culprit in developmental problems.
It is to be hoped that this article does not present an overly pessimistic view of the situation. It is possible, with prudent judgement and consultation with experts, to live a normal life for even the most sensitive individuals.
Consumers should also make it their business to pressure giant companies to minimize the use of offending elements and to produce products for sensitive consumers which would help rather than hinder their health profile.
The question has often been raised: Are there any special nutrients which can be of help to individuals who are sensitive to environmental toxins? The key point here is to avoid the irritants often found in many popular nutritional formulas. Things to be avoided are: Lactose, Yeast, artificial dyes, Titanium Dioxide preservatives, Sulfites, synthetic colors and Gluten. The author, as Chief Chemist of Freeda Vitamins, has been able to design a full line of nutrients which are made without these offending elements.
As to a special formula for sensitive individuals, much success has been found with Freeda’s Anti-Allergy Formula. This combination contains Vitamin B5 (which produces natural compounds in the adrenals to fight inflamation), buffered Vitamin C (to strengthen the immune system), and Quercetin (a non-citrus bioflavonoid which works as a natural anti-histamine).
Article by Dr. Zimmerman, from Freeda Vitamins
Please note that KosherVitamins.com does not process orders from Friday evening to Saturday evening.