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My extensive Organic experiments

Started by Quirkyhndl, December 31, 2019, 01:29:32 PM

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I've been working on this for years and I believe this can be of great help to everyone, but especially those with FM and similar conditions. This is really just the start, I'm going to try to break it down into manageable pieces.

The Organic Experiment:
Tell me if this sounds familiar: Your sinus is suddenly inflamed, you're hacking stuff up and a gnarly sinus headache is forming around your eyes/forehead/temples. The constant pain in the back of your neck at the base of your skull gets even worse. The top of your head begins to hurt, or other places around your skull, and then they all come together to form the Perfect Storm Migraine and you're out of action for 6-12hrs.

This was my constant for years. Others I've spoken to have had nearly the exact symptoms and we all know that migraine "cures" abound, but rarely help. I've come to believe that's because 1) those are treating "symptoms" and not the problem, and 2) The actual cause is so wide spread that you could be on the right track and still getting migraines.

I may sound a little preachy in this post, but I've gone from constant crippling migraines to only a couple a month (and even then I can almost always track them back to the source). I've done EXTENSIVE experimenting to make sure the things I believe are the cause are correctly identified. I've found these also increase my Fibromyalgia pain in general and muscle/tendon cramps specifically.

The experimenting has not been fun, but it quickly became obvious that it would be necessary since misinformation abounds. I've also done a heck of a lot of research into these things, so please continue with an open mind. (See My Testimony at the bottom.)

The Problem:
Major sensitivity to harsh chemicals found in our food, personal hygiene, household cleaners, and other places to the extent that we are almost constantly in contact with them. Let me just break down a few of the facts as to why I think this is the case. (These are mostly all common known facts. The only dispute is how much it is affecting our health.)

Corn - in our country this is genetically modified to contain the BT toxin. This toxin disintegrates the stomachs of insects that eat it. Since it is produced from within the corn (a protein strand spliced into it's DNA) it cannot be washed off or removed in any way. Corn is the #1 livestock feed, so this affects almost ALL animal products. Corn is also widely used in the majority of processed foods in one way or another. When you put these together, it means the average person is eating A LOT of BT toxin. In the U.S. the FDA has decided it doesn't need long term testing because "it is destroyed in the persons stomach before entering the bloodstream." Not sure how they figured that out without any long term testing...

Wheat – Genetically modified to withstand HEAVY amounts of Roundup and farmers have a tendency to douse it just before harvest because it makes it softer and easier to harvest. This also means that the hard outer shell that contains most of the gluten is being broken down, increasing the amount of toxic-imbued gluten we are consuming (which is widely known for both allergies and IBS).

Soy & Sugar beets – Modified similar to wheat to take heavy roundup and used very widely in processed foods. Considering the negative effects I've had with store brand "cane sugar," compared to raw sugar products like Morena, I suspect that most of these sugars are actually from GMO sugar beets.

Together these things create a food supply that is incredibly toxic and that's not even getting into other insecticides, heavy fertilizer, human sewage, antibiotics, and preservatives (that many people have been found to be allergic to).

Food allergy: There are many doctors that believe the increasing weird food allergies are caused by the amount of heavy chemicals we are ingesting. They think it is burning holes in our small intestine, which then allow large food particles into our bloodstream, which are then attacked by our immune system and create a food allergy. (i.e. I am allergic to cheese. Not dairy, just cheese.)

Household Chemicals:

Fragrance – This is the big one. Fragrance or "parfum" contains all sorts of chemical concoctions that are not studied well and have minimal oversight by the FDA. Think of all the places the average person  is smelling or touching these chemicals: laundry detergent, dish soap, cleaners, body wash/shampoo, cologne/perfume, etc, etc.. It's a lot, even if you're not allergic.

And, according to the FDA: "Even some products labeled "unscented" may contain fragrance ingredients. This is because the manufacturer may add just enough fragrance to mask the unpleasant smell of other ingredients, without giving the product a noticeable scent."

Preservatives – They're not just for food! A lot of people watch out for these in food due to sensitivity, but they are used in all kinds of products. I have to get a special preservative free saline for my contacts because the stuff in the normal solution was burning my eyes (ow.)

Myriad Other Harsh Chemicals – The debate continues about a host of other chemicals found in everyday products. Many of these have been proven to cause health defects (and environmental damage), but the corporations and governments of the world insist they are being used in "safe amounts." Even if that were true for a single product, you have to consider the sheer number of different products we use daily.

For those who trust that your government wouldn't allow things it knows is harmful: consider Lead paint. Abestos. Any number of artificial flavors, preservatives, and packaging that has been found harmful. Everything in cigarettes. E-cigs.

Few governments, and fewer corporations, have a very good track record of caring about the harmful affects of their products.

Product Labeling:

"Organic" Products (food or otherwise) - There are many "organic" brands that I have found to be worthless (looking at you Walmart). And I'm not alone; Japan has turned away shipments of our crops that we said were organic after testing them and finding chemicals that are not allowed in their food. Reports have criticized American food companies for labeling food "USDA Organic" that came from Romania. Note: they do not have the same standards.

Even in our country we are largely based on the honor system. There's too much for the USDA to properly investigate everything (assuming they actually care to). I will tell you how I personally tested this below.

USDA Organic is the best you're going to get, but note that there are still heavy chemicals that are ALLOWED in organic products. The amount and type is greatly limited, but there are still some there.

Non-GMO - This simply means the food was not genetically modified. Note: not all modifications are bad. There are many that do not add chemicals at all. Foods with this label might not be "as bad" as the full GMO stuff talked about above, but they are still doused in the standard chemical insecticides, fertilizers, etc.

Natural or All Natural– This is not regulated and means nothing. It is a marketing ploy.

The only exception is artificial vs natural flavors/preservatives/etc. The difference being that an artificial one starts with a synthetic man-made chemical, while a natural one must start with a plant or animal product.
However, that origin product may still be contaminated in other ways and is usually affected by enzymes and other processes in order to create the final result. (ie. Citric Acid is made by harvesting it from black mold.)

The Total Picture:
When you combines these (and still more I haven't gone into), the big picture shows a deluge of heavy, man-made and little tested chemicals that we are contacting and consuming every day. Considering the problem of getting actual clean products (especially in the U.S.), it is no wonder that people "try organic" and then don't see any benefit from it.

The only solution is to restrict as much chemical exposure as possible and then slowly reintroduce things to see what is a trigger. Food has to be from vetted sources and processed foods should be avoided as much as possible. Sorry, but my plan means you're going to have to learn how to cook. (You can do it, I believe in you.)

My Testimony:
If you're not convinced, allow me to share why I believe these things are affecting us so badly. I've spent nearly six years experimenting with what chemicals I can come into contact with, what foods I can eat, and even what I can smell without a migraine and fibromyalgia flare ups.

If I eat normal commercial meat, even most USDA Organic meat, I will immediately get swelling and pain in my sinus, often followed by a tension headache or migraine if I've eaten enough. On the other hand, I can eat deer that has been hunted or home raised ham all day long without a problem. The same goes for wild caught fish vs. fish farm products.

There are some foods that always cause a headache, despite the fact that I do not have other allergic reactions to them: peanut-butter, soy, almonds, dairy. I believe this is due to eating large amounts from a young age that were contaminated, but that's hearsay without further studies.

Strong fragrances will almost always cause an IMMEDIATE sinus headache, and I have to use "free & clear" laundry detergent or break out in a rash wherever the clothes chafe.

Consider this: a documentary about toxicity in our food reported that a farmer in Africa had switched to Monsanto GMO corn and then had his workers (who primarily ate the corn) come down with chronic headaches and sickness. Some were said to even go blind and then die. I thought this must be an exaggeration (or complete fabrication) until my own experience almost mirrored this.

My condition worsened, my headaches were constant, the pain made me feel like I WAS about to die. Then I was diagnosed with severe keratoconus and told that it was only a matter of time until I went blind without corneal transplants.

This is crucial:
I have what amounts to a genetic deformity in at least three ways: muscle/tendon pain and seizure, migraines, and corneal disintegration. I ALSO have severe sensitivity to heavy chemicals that I have proven with extensive experimentation. Is it so crazy to think that those very chemicals (which were consumed from the womb, on into baby formula) may actually have been the CAUSE of my conditions?

It was ONLY a change in diet and reduction of my exposure to chemicals that changed the severity and frequency of my headaches. The constant pain in the back of my neck? Gone. It only comes when I'm exposed to something. My nerve/muscle/tendon pain is still there, but always worsens when I'm not eating well.

I may be overly sensitive to it, but would it affect me so badly if there wasn't something to cause harm in the first place? At some point in my creation/development I was hurt by the toxic chemicals and thus remain prone to their damage. If that is true, then they can't be good for ANYONE.

If you read this far, God bless you, I hope that my struggles and pain might help you to find healing. We're all in this together.

i R a HoOmAn.


Technically, the FDA has NO oversight over the fragrance industry.  The fragrance industry is supposed to "self-regulate" which is like telling the gox to watch the henhouse.  Over 50,000 completely untested chemicals have entered society since 1950 and are used on a daily basis.  Over 14,000 of them are used regularly in fragrance products.  Ninety eight percent of them have never had their effects on the human body investigated, not to mention the effects of the millions of combinations and permutations that are being used everyday in products that are mass marketed to an unsuspecting population. 

Most people have this basic understanding that the industry is working to make our lives better.  The sad reality is that, while some in industry may want to better society, the vast majority is simply interested in making themselves money and promoting themselves at whatever cost to the public, environment, or world.  The idea of having an industry self-regulate is so stupid, it's mind blowing... if not for the BILLIONS of dollars that the chemical companies spend buying politicians and regulators every year, they'd have collapsed under public scrutiny decades ago.

Now I will step off my soapbox... but really... this is one massively messed up system.  Sadly, Canada has no backbone so we essentially do whatever the US does.  Bunch of total pantywaists.

Where God leads, His hand always provides keep Calm and code on....



odd... the rest the the post is missing... well, anyways, Yes, you're on the right track.  Not that this will work for everyone but the chemical load is a huge part of why we, as a society, are facing more and more unique diseases.  I don't have the data to tell you for sure that this is the cause of fibro but I know that it's the source of my MCS (multiple chemical sensitivities) and I strongly suspect that fibro is tied in very deeply.

The sinus headaches that you get from fragrance... what other symptoms do you have and do you get the same set of symptoms every time you are exposed to the fragrance that triggers you?
Where God leads, His hand always provides keep Calm and code on....



In part, this is why I gardened back when I could, the other part is buy/grow local so you don't have the produce travel hundreds if not thousands of miles with all the exhaust etc... Example: when I was a truck driver I picked up a load of apple pies in Portland Oregon and drove them cross country to NY State, then without even unloading, after stopping at a warehouse, I drove them back to about 100 miles west of  Detroit Michigan. NY and Michigan have apples aplenty and commercial bakeries. WHY did I do that? A 2,700+ mile trip instead of 100+/- if it was grown and produced in Michigan.

Grow in the back yard and you don't add the transport cost and exhaust and you KNOW what chemicals are in/on it minus the air pollution. But for me, that takes a lot of good days mentally and physically which don't happen that often anymore  :giveup: .

As for sinus problems, I lucked out. My father had bad allergies to everything also which affected his sinuses badly. I think he had fibro as well. The docs couldn't figure out his problems and simply said he had arthritis. The only food problems I have are MSGs I think. A whole bag of the "Party" size Doritos and I'm a hurting unit. It could just be the salt, but I can eat other salty foods - pretzels - and not have a problem. I used to eat Doritos as a meal, now I'm down to a regular pounder bag lasting 2 -3 days.


Think globally, act locally... it makes sense as long as I can afford to put food on the table... and that's getting harder and harder to do.
Where God leads, His hand always provides keep Calm and code on....



What Foxgrove said....... ditto for me


Times are tough when "Happy Hour" is your nap.
My mind not only wanders, sometimes it leaves completely!


Quote from: Barberian on December 31, 2019, 09:38:24 PM
In part, this is why I gardened back when I could,

God how I wish I could garden here. I had my own compost at my place and was getting ready to build several garden beds before we had to leave. I'm going to try to convince my mother-in-law to give me a back corner of the yard to garden, but she's got a dog that likes to tear up plants (and everything else) so I'll have to enclose the whole thing with something she won't chew through.

Quote from: foxgrove on December 31, 2019, 06:18:59 PM

The sinus headaches that you get from fragrance...

The sinus headaches, tension headache, and migraines are all tied in, it just depends on the level of exposure. It's always the same and is most often triggered by fragrance, eating animal products, soy or sugar, and foods with preservatives.

It always brings congestion and pain in the sinus and for YEARS I had constant pain in the back of my neck before I finally got my diet and general exposure under control.

Fun side note, the fragance in the "dandruff shampoo" was actually causing me to have severe dry scalp for years. Switched to a clean shampoo and never any more issues.

I've talked to others with these exact same symptoms, so I know that it is more prevalent than people with migraines realize. Although a lot of people (*cough* my grandma *cough*) won't give up the things they like to gain some measure of healing.
i R a HoOmAn.


It sounds like you suffer from chemical sensitivities, possibly even MCS (multiple chemical sensitivities).  The only thing different between the two versions is the spread of trigger chemicals, severity and the number of body systems affected.  For an example, my pain goes through the roof, I lose the ability to think or speak, I become quite weak and often can't stand or walk, I get severe digestive issues, and my breathing is often affected to the point of requiring medication... oh yeah, and I get the most earth shattering migraine... kaboom, no warning aura, no time to prepare.  Fortunately, I do not suffer anywhere near as bad as some of my friends.  MCS can be brutal and life ending in many instances.  Sadly, I've lost several friends to it.

You're most certainly on the right road and are doing practically everything that every other chemie (MCS sufferer) out there does.  I'm not sure if you've identified the specific chemicals that are causing your problems but if you find you're reacting to more and more chemicals that aren't related, you should look at getting tested for MCS.

The basic and advanced technique for handling this all start with the basic premise, less contact is better... thus, avoidance becomes the primary treatment. Past that, it's intensive dietary testing (your specialty) and remediation of your home to remove all triggers... primarily removing sources of petroleum based products... air fresheners, fragranced personal products, carpets, problem paint, new furniture, etc etc... it gets quite extensive depending on your level of impairment.

In any case, I just wanted to applaud your obvious wisdom in finding the sources of your pain.  Anything that we can do to reduce the extra pain makes it easier it is to deal with the fibro pain.  :clapping:
Where God leads, His hand always provides keep Calm and code on....



Quote from: foxgrove on January 01, 2020, 04:56:20 PM
you should look at getting tested for MCS.

did not even know there was a test for that. Another something to pursue. As for staying away from triggers...I don't want to get into a rant about the people we live with, but I'll just say they've got some severe OCD and are very confrontational about how things are done around their house.

Getting them to understand I have something wrong with me at all has been difficult, asking them to remove chemicals I'm sensitive to just isn't going to happen. As it is I just hide myself in the back room when they are using them and cover my face when I need to do things like laundry where it's unavoidable.
i R a HoOmAn.


Sorry, I misspoke... no tests exist for MCS, more an evaluation of your history and condition.  It's a difficult condition to diagnose but a whole lot harder to live with.  The specialists in MCS are generally involved in environmental health.  The closest center that I know of to you is the Dallas Environmental Health Center.

I hear you on gaining people's interest in your health.  It's really hit and miss... folks tend to be very posessive about what they use for some reason... maybe they are resisting change or something but we've come close to family splits over this.  We haven't been able to go out to Jo's farm in several years as they have abandoned the idea of going fragrance free because they feel it impacts their lives negatively.

If you're ever looking for air filtration, I highly recommend Austin Air Healthmate Plus filters (  They are by far the cheapest of the high end filters and the lowest price filter that will meet the needs of the MCS crowd.  The other thing that I've used for years is a Respro allergy filter (  They have a chemical/particle filter that gives you a decent amount of buffer for you to do what has to be done and get out of the situation.  For me, in a not too fragrant situation I get about an extra half hour of time before I'm in trouble.  The filters are replaceable and In the last year I added their Pro-Seal add on and find it helps greatly with reducing leaks.  My issue with them right now is that the filters are expensive and I am having trouble locating them in North America for a decent price.

Basically, like you, I'm simply trying to avoid the chemicals that trigger me.  Whether I avoid them by removing myself or by removing the chemical from the air, it's the same result.  
Where God leads, His hand always provides keep Calm and code on....



This subject drives me mad.
I can neither aford or have the energy to do it.
Pretty much everything is bad when you look.
Did you know Japanese say our water taste dead. :dunno:

It is what it is...


Quote from: denny on January 05, 2020, 07:02:38 PM

I can neither aford or have the energy to do it.

Sry for the late reply, things have been hectic. I know it can seem overwhelming at first, but there are a LOT more options now. I typically stick to the HEB store brand organic (kroger is ok, Annie's is also a good brand), and Sprouts (like Whole-Foods but a heck of a lot cheaper).

I really don't have a choice, but I also feel that the benefits (including reduced costs for medication) far outweigh the costs. I wouldn't even be able to work part-time if I hadn't established this diet.

A gradual change may be a lot easier than trying to do it all at once. Choose something you know is probably an issue (animal products are good place to start) and then change it up.

ie. I drink oat milk instead of dairy, daiya "cheese", and I get my protein from mushrooms, beans, and seeds instead of meat.

I planned on writing more in depth on starting this sort of life-change, with some other helpful tips. I'll get on that asap.
i R a HoOmAn.


I understand your frustration, denny.  When your funds are already dry and being past being able to work makes more income unlikely to impossible, it's overwhelming to want to get better but to be unable to. 

Diet is important and doing what you can on your budget is the responsible thing to do.  Remember that home cooked is always better food than restaurants and cheaper too.  Little changes like buying fruits and vegetables instead of pre-packaged food or red meat can often cost the same but may improve our health.  Even some is better than none... and when you can't do that, that's ok.  Don't let the entirety of it overwhelm you.  Little by little as much healing as we can manage in each day.  That's all anyone can ask.
Where God leads, His hand always provides keep Calm and code on....



I understand that feeling Denny it feels like the walls close in when a diet or treatment is offered up and we look at the cost. I hope you can get where you need to be

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