Toxins and environmental sensitivities

Toxins and environmental sensitivities

Toxins contribute to a wide range of diseases, among them environmental sensitivities, and many people who are sensitive to electromagnetic radiation have issues with toxicity. In this article, we take a look at a study by Dr Harold Zeliger PhD, a professor of chemistry and environmental scientist who has made a study of the impacts of toxins on health.

Dr Zeliger says that a group of chemicals called lipophiles—chemicals that dissolve in oil and fat—are associated with a wide range of health problems, including:

  • type 2 diabetes

  • metabolic syndrome

  • cardiovascular disease (myocardial infarction atherosclerosis, hypertension, coronary heart disease, peripheral heart disease, ischemic heart disease, cardiac autonomic function)

  • neurodevelopmental problems (autism spectrum disorders, ADHD)

  • neurodegenerative diseases (Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis)

  • immunological problems (allergies, chemical sensitivity, autoimmune disease)

  • musculoskeletal problems (rheumatoid arthritis, osteoporosis)

  • respiratory problems (asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease)

  • cancer (breast, prostate, kidney, childhood, leukemia).

Lipophilic chemicals, which include polychlorinated biphenyls and organochlorine pesticides, can remain in the body for decades.

According to Zeliger, effects are even worse when lipophiles and hydrophiles—chemicals that dissolve in water—are both present in the body and combinations can affect every organ and system in the body. He says that lipophiles permeate cell membranes and ‘facilitate absorption of hydrophiles which serve as solvents and carriers.’

Zeliger says that, ‘...exposures to mixtures of lipophiles and hydrophiles produced enhanced toxicities at higher concentrations and, surprisingly, ...such mixtures targeted organs and systems not known to be affected by the individual species and ... different mixtures attacked different body organs and systems with each mixture acting as a unique toxic agent.’ They can accumulate in the body over time.

‘Exposures to heavy metals and metalloids …. Have also been shown to increase the incidence of type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, neurological disease and other ENVDs [Environmental diseases],’ Zeliger says.

Zeliger believes that chemicals and metals contribute to disease by causing oxidative stress (OS) in the body, as do other agents—such as EMR, bacteria, viruses, fungi, stress, some pharmaceuticals and aging. He suggests that levels of oxidative stress in the body are a better way of predicting disease than levels of individual toxins.

‘Exposures to toxins as well as the presence of disease results in increases in these free radical species and produce the oxidative imbalances in cells that produce OS. OS is ...directly or indirectly, the cause of virtually all disease. ‘

Zeliger suggests a number of actions that can be taken to reduce the impact of toxins on the body.

  • Avoid the use of products that contain toxic chemicals.

  • Educate people about toxins and regulate toxins.

  • Eat a Mediterranean diet which is rich in antioxidants.

  • Detoxify the body.

  • Develop non-toxic, green forms of energy.

  • Reduce global warming which increases oxidative stress in a number of ways.

Zeliger concludes his paper with a warning and a glimmer of hope. He says, ‘There are steps that can be taken to lower the incidence of ENVDs, but complete prevention of ENVDs is impossible, given the wide spread distribution of the causative chemicals and genetic predispositions. Biomarkers that determine total OS in the body would provide predictive indicators of increased vulnerability to the onset of ENVD and enable individuals to act to reduce total OS and hence disease.’

Zeliger HI, ‘Causes, Mechanisms and Prevention of Environmental Diseases’ .Dual Diagn Open Acc. 2015, 1:1. doi: 10.21767/2472-5048.100001


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