Search results for chemicals

An open letter to my friends: Your perfume is killing me!

Posted on August 27th, 2015

Dearest Loved Ones,

Your perfume is killing me. I mean it almost literally.

Image via Four Tears

It’s also affecting our friendship. I can’t hug you, and so you might have noticed my stepping back when we meet up.

I can’t risk dining with you in a confined space and so you might have noticed I’ve been suggesting we meet for a walk instead.

Actually, I probably haven’t always been so subtle. I’ve probably hurt your feelings a bit. This is because perfume, for me, is like a whack in the noggin; I strike out to protect myself.

I’m so, so, so sorry.

I’ve toyed with this a while: how to let you know that I just can’t cope when you wear fragrance (perfume, Read more

Could you have chemical intolerance? What next?

Posted on July 30th, 2015

I make it a personal mission to live my life as toxin-free as I can. High toxic loads aren’t good for any of us…even more so if you’re struggling with autoimmune disease.

Could you have chemical intolerance? What next?

Image via Pinterest

For anyone with autoimmune issues, chemicals and heavy metals seem to be both the cause and effect. Research published in the Journal of Applied Toxicology shows that approximately 20 per cent of healthy people demonstrate an immune reactivity to chemicals. This essentially means the body flags chemicals to the immune system, which in turn fights to destroy those toxic compounds.

Introducing chemical intolerance

Over time, if the toxic load is too heavy and your immune system starts struggling to fight the toxic compounds, this may trigger an autoimmune process known as chemical intolerance.

Chemical intolerance usually evolves in two stages.

  • In the first stage, the body’s natural ability to tolerate chemicals and toxins is gradually broken down.
  • In the second stage, an ordinary exposure to an environmental compound (traffic exhaust, perfume, a drug, or other chemicals) suddenly triggers an immune response.

Read more

One month without exercise, soap and loo paper…

Posted on July 29th, 2015

I just got back from a month in true retreat. I was rather cryptic about where I was heading and I committed to not sharing my experience in real time on social media. Golly, what freedom! I’m happy to now flesh out the details because I reckon a few of you will find them interesting.

Refugee chic: I took to winding my hair in a rag.

I took to winding my hair in a rag.

Where did you go?

India. To a hard-core Ayurvedic clinic – Vaidyagrama – in Tamil Nadu, an hour from Coimbatore, which is just north of Kerala. Which is to say, eons from any semblance of a tourist trail.

Why?

As many of you know, my autoimmune journey is a perpetual one. I manage my disease. And I do this by experimenting. I’d been told for years that Ayurvedic treatment was a boon for AI. I very much subscribe to the Ayurvedic tradition of yoga, meditation and the eating principles of this ancient discipline. But I wanted to see if a committed 3-4 week panchakarma (see below) treatment would take my healing to loftier heights.

I’ll be frank. I didn’t want to go. My acute sense of smell and hearing rendered India a torturous prospect. Every bit of me wanted to go hiking in Switzerland. And I even had an escape plan if I couldn’t cope (I’d researched Read more