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introducing-Hormetic Phenomena  RSS feed

 
Leah Sattler
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I wanted to present this so that anyone not familiar with this concept can use it to help make good judgments in their life and to make appropriate risk assessments concerning all of their dealings. although some may take issue with it or to the specific details that are unknown, I think everyone interested in living healthy happy lives, especially those that might be exceptionally worried about the risks associated with.... well...everything.... might gain a little peace with knowledge.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hormesis

http://www.nature.com/embor/journal/v4/n10/full/embor953.html
 
Jocelyn Campbell
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You know, this went past me, Leah, as something I couldn't digest. I agree to a point.

I think that some exposure, to germs for example, can actually make a person stronger. Some studies show that coffee, wine, or other supposedly "bad" things can be good in small amounts. I've even been a frequent user and proponent of homeopathic remedies which takes this principle and runs with it. (Homeopathics include using snake and bee venom and poisonous bella donna for some of its remedies.)

I think by linking to this idea you're trying to say that most of the time, some toxin exposure might not hurt us, and might make us stronger (correct me if I'm totally off the point). And perhaps that it's sometimes good not to stress so much over EVERY little detail and choice in our lives. I've been right there with you much of my life and really get that now, too. With chemicals and other man-made toxins, however, I am much, much more dubious. I don't think we even know how these exposures can compound each other in most folks, and especially in a susceptible person.

Let's say someone has had multiple antibiotics for decades and now has a gut that is stripped of it's natural, essential bacterial lining. Leaky gut syndrome occurs and the person becomes allergic to all kinds of foods. Now this person is nutrient deprived, and suffering from repeated, chronic allergic reactions. And let's say they work in a department store, around perfumes, plastics, starches and fabric dyes, and their house has occasional mold issues and formaldehyde fumes at different intervals from furniture, wall board or new carpet. This person ends up being pushed over the edge to become chemically sensitive. Have you ever met someone like this? They can be sick in bed for three days after just being around one friend wearing hairspray. Was there one albeit repeated exposure that did it? Probably not. Shouldn't some of these exposures have made this person stronger? I'm thinking unfortunately, they did just the opposite.

As I've reached middle age, my own body isn't as resilient as it used to be, and I wonder what combination of factors contributed to certain parts that don't work like they used to. And, two different families I know each has a gorgeous little daughter going through puberty at the age of 7 and 8.  Some studies link this with estrogenic properties in the chemicals around us.

I'm not a fanatic, and I don't stress over every single purchase or choice I make, but I am continually trying to improve and reduce my and my family's toxin exposure. I'm still not totally sure if I've comprehended your point here, Leah, so do let me know if I'm off the mark. Or, if anyone else has feedback on this, I'd love to hear that, too.
 
Gwen Lynn
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As I've reached middle age, my own body isn't as resilient as it used to be, and I wonder what combination of factors contributed to certain parts that don't work like they used to. And, two different families I know each has a gorgeous little daughter going through puberty at the age of 7 and 8.  Some studies link this with estrogenic properties in the chemicals around us.

I'm 48, pre-menopausal - menopausal, whatever. Because of the changes my body is experiencing, I'd give anything for some of those estrogenic properties that are around me to soak in a little. Might do me some good! Doesn't seem to be happening though. I'm told menopause really messes with your immune system/overall health & well being, and I believe it!

Up until Aug. of 2007, I had only taken antibiotics maybe 3 or 4 times, in 47 years. I have always avoided them. Never been one to take them for every sniffle, like so many people I've known. Geeze, doctors pass them out like candy! Unfortunately in the 10 months after Aug. 07, I had to take some of the most powerful antibiotics available for various health problems. Strep, pneumonia, UTI. Apparently, my immune system just ain't what it used to be. I've tried various herbal remedies, they don't seem to help much. As Bette Davis once said..."old age ain't for sissies!"

Regarding ingesting various toxins; well, my mother is a 78 yr old chemical consuming miracle! She has been using saccharin since it was invented, and still does. Same with teflon. We always had teflon pans when I was a kid. Mom's health is great! She takes the smallest dose of a generic blood pressure controlling med and that's it.

Mom has battled weight problems for most of her life, largely due to a lack of exercise more than anything else. She voluteers 2 days a week at a local nursing home & water walks/jogs at the YMCA or in our backyard pool in the summer. So maybe some of this toxin resisting ability is genetic? I dunno...but mom just keeps on going! I think everyone should try to live as healthy as they can. Sometimes life involves toxins that are almost unavoidable, and if you get too crazy with that worry, then you aren't really having much of a life.
 
Leah Sattler
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WenVan wrote:
Sometimes life involves toxins that are almost unavoidable, and if you get too crazy with that worry, then you aren't really having much of a life.


thats what I am getting at. I have met some people who are so fearful of things that it consumes their life. I am not somehow trying to make reference that popping antibiotics like candy, and being non chalant about potential toxins such as pesticides and food additives is somehow good for us. but it is important to reckognize that life involves "toxins" natural and man made and that exposure to normal moderate amounts is likely beneficial. I won't get into too much about natural vs. manmade. unless something is "super natural" than it is natural. there are compounds that don't appear in the natural world but everything is made from chemicals found on earth! it is mostly the unnatural exosure amount that is detrimental. as everyone knows pyrethrins are made from plants but I don't think people should refrain from having an arrangment of chrysanthemums on their table because of it.

part of the reason moderation is important for me is that I don't want my child growing up afraid of life!
 
Gwen Lynn
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Your point is well taken; by me, anyways. I sure didn't think you were inferring that antibiotic overuse, pesticides or food additives were good for us, and nor do I. Surely no one else would think so either. Maybe my mom's use of saccharin will catch up to her someday...and maybe it won't.

I've sure known people who think "Well, my Dr. gave it to me, so it must be okay!" That is scary!
 
Leah Sattler
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it is frightening. my doctor said to. the usda/fda approved it. my kids teacher said so......so it must be safe. I avoid 'manmade' things especially but knowing that some exposure to toxins is likely to actually boost the immune system and result in a protective effect is comforting. especially when I am holding my breath running past a store front nail salon  or eating something i normally wouldn't due to some circumstance. and its a great excuse for a glass of wine in the evening

it especially bugs me with kids. people will give anything to their kids if their doctor says to!!!

 
Gwen Lynn
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Someone I know was told by her Dr. to use a popular antihistamine as a sleep inducer. This med happens to be the same ingredient in many over-the-counter sleep aids. No biggie, I've used it too. More for an antihistamine though.

Anyways, she would also give it to her young kids just for the sleep inducing qualities. Too often, in my opinion!

Well both those kids are in their mid-teens now, & one of them has had asthma for years. Kinda makes ya wonder...
 
Susan Monroe
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I wouldn't think that obsessing over cleanliness to the point of sterility is good for anyone.  No exposure often means no immunity.

On the other hand, there are people who deliberately take or expose themselves to dangerous things where the effects aren't really known.  One thing I've noticed for the last twenty or thirty years is the information from doctors and scientists as distributed via the media.  A lot of theories are often passed around as facts, which they are not.  Some people believe every bit of information like it came directly from God.

I think it's best to keep to the middle of the road.  Don't bleach your entire existence, and don't drink rattlesnake venom.

Sue
 
Leah Sattler
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yep. what she said.

the media is especially damaging. giving half truths, not elaborating on findings or putting them in context. either because they were puposefuly manipulated so that drug companies could use them for free advertising or because some journalist unfamiliar with the complexities of scientific findings picks and chooses what information to pass on.

take everything with a grain of salt and stay near the middle.
 
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