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Spring Cleaning May Cause Allergies

by Jeff Cordeiro

The Boy in the Plastic Bubble starring John TravoltaIt’s time for spring cleaning but don’t overdo it. You are probably too clean already, inside and out.

In 1976, “The Boy in the Plastic Bubble”, starring John Travolta, told of a child born with a malfunctioning immune system, making it impossible for him to come into contact with the outside world. Today our modern super-clean world may, in fact, be creating countries filled with people handicapped by malfunctioning immune systems.

The number of people with allergies, asthma and other immune diseases is skyrocketing. Homes are now nearly antiseptic. Our bodies rarely come into contact with bacteria or mold or mildew. Kids don’t even go outside and play in the dirt any longer. Things are just too clean.

The body needs to be exposed to germs and allergens in order to strengthen its immune system, just like your muscles need exercise to get strong. You are born germ-free. Even the good bacteria our bodies rely on for digestion must be acquired after birth.

My mother kept a very clean house. I was diagnosed with allergies in either the first or second grade. I remember going to the doctor's office for allergy shots. We moved to a home surrounded by hay fields when I was in the fourth grade. The following spring, my "hay fever" went nuts.

Because the allergy shots I had been given in the past didn't seem to be doing the job, I was taken to an allergy specialist for testing. I don't know how they do it now but, back then, it was close to torture. Have you heard of a "death by a thousand cuts"? Well, this was similar.

First they covered my back with small cuts. Then they put drops of different potential allergens on each cut. The cuts that swelled up, got red and itched indicated which things I was allergic to. Hopefully, they test differently now. Once they discovered what I was allergic to, I was given drops to take orally that contained small doses of the allergens to help my body build up resistance to those particular irritants.

Well, once I knew how the process worked, I simply went outside and played more. In junior high, I had one asthma attack. As a freshman in high school, I had my second and last asthma attack. I went on to be on the track team and the football team in high school.

Part of the problem is with the cleaning products themselves. Toxic chemicals are used on virtually every surface in our homes, our workplaces and public spaces; chemicals that we breathe into our lungs and absorb through our skin into our bloodstream, further adding to our toxic burden. So, the next time you clean, instead of using toxic chemicals, use “green” cleaning products. They’re better for your body and better for the environment.

Most everyone is now very familiar with how the improper use of antibiotics has created drug-resistant strains of viruses but most people are unaware that the use of antibacterial soaps and hand sanitizers, instead of good old soap and warm water, has spawned superbugs like (XXDR) TB. (Watch the 3-minute ABC video on XXDR TB). Antibacterial products, from toothpaste to socks, also contain chemicals called triclosan and triclocarban that affect your hormones.

Our mouths also lack the bacteria needed to function properly (watch this video on tooth decay). Like antibiotics, antiseptic mouthwashes destroy all the bacteria in your mouth indiscriminately – not just the few that cause bad breath. A healthy oral bio-film, one that can fight tooth decay, contains hundreds of bacteria. After meals, simply rinse with plain water to keep the pH in the mouth balanced and the good bacteria doing their jobs. If you must use something stronger, use hydrogen peroxide (a chemical your body produces naturally) instead of commercial mouthwashes. Flossing, of course, is still a good idea.

In a recent study, the U.S. also topped the list with the highest percentage of people with food allergies. Germany, Italy and Norway followed close behind. About 22% of the people from each of these countries showed antibodies against some type of food. Iceland and Spain had the lowest rates at about 11% of the population.

The top five most common food sensitivities were hazelnuts, peaches, shrimp, wheat and apples. The research team found that, contrary to popular medical opinion, fish, eggs and cow's milk were the least common causes.

One factor is that today's food is too clean. They are processed to the point of being virtually dead, in fact. Not only are they devoid of harmful bacteria but they are also lacking vitamins, minerals, yeasts, and enzymes. Additionally, our food contains things it shouldn’t.

Commercial farming, chemical fertilizers, pesticides, picking foods before they’ve ripened, feed (that often contains hormones, antibiotics and Genetically Modified Organisms) given to animals instead of natural grasses, additives, fortifiers, artificial sweetener, preservatives, and the international shipping of fruits and vegetables from around the world all supply us with foods that are incomplete and even toxic.

The yeasts (beta-glucans) that our bodies used for thousands of years to activate our immune defenses have virtually been eliminated from our food supply. Our immune systems are now basically sleeping on the job, making us hyper-sensitive to all kinds of things.

When it comes to food, one answer is named LOIS. Foods that are Local Organic and In Season contain the most nutrients. The closer to natural, the better foods are for our bodies. Raw and uncooked foods are best. So, eat those LOIS fruits, vegetables and nuts. If you want to go the extra mile, make sure you are eating the foods for your ancestral type as well. 

To get beta-glucans back into your system, you can add MonaVie’s newest juice blend (M)mūn. To learn more about this amazing juice and how beta-glucans activate the immune system, please click here.

So, the overriding message is to get back to nature and, when cleaning, think twice before you sterilize your environment. You may be causing the very problem you are trying to prevent.

As always, I hope you found this article thought-provoking and helpful.

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Related Information:

Spring is in the Air

Eat Foods for Your Type

Click here for information on MonaVie

Green Cleaning Tips

Good books on nutrition for health:

Dr. Perricone's Weight Loss Diet (click here) and 
Staying Healthy with Nutrition
by Dr. Elson M. Haas, MD (click here).

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