Many years ago my immune and nervous system crashed on the day my family moved into our new home. We had worked on our home for several months, installing insulation, drywall, painting, trimming and laying ceramic tile. On the last day before we moved in, the carpeting installer, who had been delayed, installed the carpeting. The next day my more than ten year nightmare of compromised health began. I fell into a terrifying deep hole of depression, which I had never experienced before. I suffered from severe stomach pains, doubling over in pain after eating anything, and in one month I lost over twenty pounds. I had a reaction to almost everything I ate or was exposed to.
After consultation with doctors, I was put on antacids and a variety of antidepressants which did nothing to lift the depression or soothe my digestive distress. I had tests done to determine the cause of my debilitating stomach pains and weight loss, providing no answers. I soon realized some foods caused me more difficulties than others and I started to research food allergies. Conventional medicine was not helping me so I decided I had to find the answers to my health issues on my own. After a great deal of research I decided to have a sophisticated blood test done to determine if I had food allergies and how allergic I was. The tests detect antibodies. Antibodies are a type of protein produced by the immune system in response to foreign substances that may be a threat to the body – such as chemicals, virus particles, spores, or bacterial toxins. Sometimes the immune system does not function properly and considers foods as a foreign substance and produces antibodies in response to ingesting those foods. My tests results revealed numerous food allergies (over 80); some produced an immediate reaction and others produced a delayed reaction. Once I had this information, I was able to avoid the items on the list responsible for my reactions and thus quickly eliminate many of my painful gastrointestinal symptoms. The blood test provided me with my first WEAK LIST #1. You can read about that in my blog post THE WEAK LIST: A Necessary Well-being Tool. I learned muscle response testing to further protect myself from the potentially harmful ingredients in foods, especially when I ate out. Learn how to protect yourself in MUSCLE RESPONSE TESTING for Beginners.
Just as a prescription addresses a symptom, I was addressing symptoms by avoiding these foods. Allergies and intolerances are the ‘tip of an iceberg’. Deeper underlying causes existed. There had to be reasons for the onset of so many skewed responses. I needed more answers. I needed to get to the root cause. I would later find out my body pollution from toxin exposures, in combination with chronic stress from physical, mental and emotional sources, was responsible for my health challenges. The damage from these cause ‘skewed responses’. The night we moved into the house the carpeted finished basement flooded, releasing formaldehyde into the air. Formaldehyde is a known respiratory irritant and carcinogen. Before 1996 it was used to set carpet dye. Water re-releases formaldehyde.
After moving into our new home I experienced severe speech difficulties. There were times I was barely able to force a word out. It was so embarrassing when people would ask me if I was alright. They assumed I was going to cry. The spasms made the vocal cords wobble like they do when a person is emotionally upset. I requested a referral to an ENT (Ear, Nose and Throat) specialist for investigation of my throat and vocal chords. A laryngoscope examination indicated I had spasmodic dysphonia. Possible cause was not discussed. The treatment option I was offered was botox injections into my vocal cords every few months. I would be speechless after each treatment for a period of time and would have to continue treatments, probably for the rest of my life. The long term impact was unknown and the results were inconsistent. I declined the treatment. There had to be a better solution.
The depression was my constant companion. I continued to research and read every book and internet article I could find about depression and allergies. I had to eliminate my ‘base of the iceberg’ issues, including my body pollution and allow my body to heal before my symptoms (‘tip of the iceberg’) were completely eliminated. This is where you should start your well-being journey. To eliminate my body pollution I tried many detoxifying supplements but found they did not adequately work. I developed the herbal bath tea method which uses the body’s largest organ, the skin. It works much like a pain or nicotine patch, sending the detoxifying and healing properties of the herbs throughout the body. The medicinal properties helped my body to detoxify and heal. My body pollution, which had built up over the years, and resulting damage has been eliminated using detoxifying herbal baths, nutritional therapies (food), self-help therapies, energy therapies and customized visualizations for the conditions. These therapies have eliminated my symptoms and helped my body to repair the damage caused by the toxins (leaded gas fumes, formaldehyde, house off gassing of volatile organic compounds, pesticides, etc). Learn more about the strategies I used in my recovery from allergies and multiple chemical sensitivities in THE WHOLE PERSON WELL-BEING EQUATION, FOOD ALLERGIES: GONE and MCS: GONE. To learn how to eliminate your depression read DEPRESSION: GONE. In the books I share the strategies that led me to becoming 100% allergy and depression free, and able to all foods and chemicals without adverse symptoms. I also share how to reprogram your body to stop the faulty symptom responses. This reprogramming breaks the associations that are at the root of the ‘skewed’ responses.
One out of five individuals is sensitive to formaldehyde, and it is often a factor in the onset of chemical hypersensitivity. There is no safety level. The Canadian government has set a level at 0.1ppm; this is the same level at which the smell is detectable; it is a carcinogen. Formaldehyde is found in building materials, latex paints, enamels, fabric treatments, foam, deodorizers, preservative and coagulant of rubber latex, toxoids and vaccines, newsprint, inks, nail polish, nail hardeners, wave sets, dyes, personal care products, make up, feminine hygiene items, facial tissue and dry cleaning. They evaporate slowly and remain active for months/years. In fabrics the process is even slower. For more information on the risks of formaldehyde exposure, visit http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/factsheet/Risk/formaldehyde.
In my research I found information about systems which permanently addressed allergies and used neuromuscular biofeedback to determine health priorities. I have since become certified in providing these treatments. Permanent allergy elimination treatments will only be effective long term if you address the underlying causes of those symptoms. Learn more about searching for the cause to find a cure in THE WHOLE PERSON WELL-BEING EQUATION.
After years of research and struggling to regain optimum health, using a variety of therapies, treatments and remedies, and many wrong turns; I feel good. I have regained much of my health naturally! I am allergy free! I am depression free! My energy levels are good. My speech has improved dramatically and most days, sounds fairly normal (from what others tell me). I am able to go into any building or polluted environment with informed vigilance instead of fear and be symptom free’ I have developed a precautionary principle to protect me from harmful exposures. Recent trips past the perfume counters in Shopper’s Drug Mart and The Bay have caused no negative symptoms. Most people do not realize they are also affected by the harmful neurotoxic chemicals in scents. I am like a canary in the coal mine, the first to let you know if you have an air quality problem and health concern. Past damage from synthetic chemicals can leave you with a heightened sense of smell and chemical vigilance, an early warning system and not necessarily a bad thing. As my body healed my heightened sense of smell and chemical vigilance diminished. I am no longer negatively affected.
In September of 2011 I moved into another new home. Some people probably thought I was crazy based on my past experience with new home off gassing. My upgrades were no VOC paints throughout, costing me approximately $350 extra and hard surface wide plank laminate. There is no carpet in my home. The town home had an air exchanger included, which I felt was mandatory. The remainder of the materials were standard builder picks. I have had no symptoms as the result of living in my new home. The true proof of my recovery from MCS.
I am now a Holistic Wellness Practitioner, Certified Nutritional Consultant and BodyFeedback™ Interview & Therapy Practitioner. I have developed a holistic protocol using neuromuscular biofeedback, energy, reprogramming, detoxification, herbs, nutrition (food) and visualization therapies to be used in combination with the self-help therapies in my books, touch and prayer. I use these therapies on myself, my family members and my clients. Consider using a holistic approach in your quest for optimum health. As a result of neuromuscular biofeedback results, the need for detoxification has been indicated in most clients presenting with various conditions. I have developed herbal detoxifying bath teas based on my body pollution and client results. The recipe can be found in THE WHOLE PERSON WELL-BEING EQUATION.
I created the BODYFEEDBACK™ INTERVIEW & THERAPY SYSTEM, with a symptom tracking component, to identify health challenges and provide information to implement changes to resolve them. The system also provides you with your ‘weak list’. For more information on how the system works see the information that follows.
For those of you who have suffered for a long time with allergies, intolerances, chemical sensitivities, environmental illnesses, immune disorders and other health problems; do not lose hope; the body has an amazing ability to heal itself. Sometimes, due to the body being overwhelmed by the stresses of everyday life and interference of toxins in the environment; it needs help.
A holistic approach using energy, detoxification, nutrition (food), visualization and reprogramming therapies can provide you with renewed health. It is important to investigate and deal with the root causes and resulting damage or changes (associations). Addressing the symptoms alone may fail to provide you with the recovery you seek. Significant repair, including DNA repair may be required before symptoms are alleviated. After major chemical exposures the body’s normal ‘default’ criteria, settings and way of responding are altered. The body starts responding based on the new default setting or altered criteria. The body is also left with faulty associations that need to be broken. The goal in recovery is to restore and maintain the original defaults and ways of responding through reprogramming. It is possible to do so using a combination of approaches. I have been able to get my body to stop it’s faulty responding using a variety of strategies which I share in my book THE WHOLE PERSON WELL-BEING EQUATION. Well-being is a journey you take one day at a time, one step at a time. Every day is a new opportunity to get back onto the path to improved well-being. The first step is to believe in your body’s amazing abilities. I have been able to duplicate the same ‘allergy free’, ‘chemical sensitivity free’ and ‘depression free’ status with my clients using the strategies in my protocol, which can be found in my book.
Scripture provides many reminders of the importance of belief: “Therefore I say to you, all things for which you pray and ask, believe that you have received them, and they will be granted you” Mark 11:24. You are not alone! Start by looking at your body pollution and using your body’s amazing abilities created by God to recover. Learn from my journey to improved well-being in THE WHOLE PERSON WELL-BEING EQUATION.
Focusing your attention and money on symptom relief like permanent allergy elimination treatments for allergies, ‘tip of the iceberg’ symptoms, may not provide long term holding power without first addressing the underlying ‘base of the iceberg’ issues. The Whole Person Well-being Equation book will provide you with the strategies I used to regain my health and the recommended way to proceed, saving you wasted time and money. I wasted a lot of both.
If you have positive results from any of the information you learn from my books, my website or talks, please let me know. Positive feedback is always welcome. It may help someone else on their well-being journey. If your results have not been as anticipated, I encourage you to reassess and try other approaches in your search for improved well-being. Every person is uniquely different and will require a distinctive approach made up of a combination of strategies. It may take more time to see results.
In keeping with the philosophy I wrote about in my book THE WHOLE PERSON WELL-BEING EQUATION, I am continuing with my symptom elimination investigation. In September of 2012, I completed one series of non-surgical voice repair lessons for spasmodic dysphonia with Diana Yampolsky at the Royan’s Professional Vocal School in Toronto. I have been practicing the vocal exercises since then. I have had few spasms as a result. The biggest bonus for me was that I was able to sing Christmas carols at church on Christmas Eve. I hadn’t been able to join in the singing at church because of my previously ‘strangled voice’. It really was a Christmas miracle. I know that my voice will continue to improve with the exercises and visualizations.
Spasmodic dysphonia is a neurological disorder affecting the voice muscles in the larynx, or voice box. In spasmodic dysphonia, the muscles inside the vocal folds experience sudden involuntary movements—called spasms—which interfere with the ability of the folds to vibrate and produce sound. Spasmodic dysphonia causes voice breaks and can give the voice a tight, strained quality.
Whatever symptoms you are experiencing – You can become 100% symptoms free.
Investigate the common denominators in your symptom equation like I did.
Wishing you well and success on your well-being journey.
Elisabeth Hines, C.N.C., C.B.P.
Holistic Wellness Practitioner
Health by Design Blogger