Article of Interest: Nearly Every Cleaning Product in Your Home May Release Hundreds of Toxic Chemicals

Our team at the Toxicant-Induced Loss of Tolerance (TILT) Program at UT Health San Antonio wanted to share this important external article:

Nearly every cleaning product in your home may release hundreds of toxic chemicals linked to cancer and infertility when used – and leave them lingering in the air for up to four HOURS, study suggests” from the UK Daily Mail.

Nearly every cleaning product in your home may release hundreds of potentially toxic chemicals when used, a study suggests.
Researchers at the Environmental Working Group tested 30 common household products such as glass cleaners, stain removers and air fresheners. They said that all but one released measurable levels of volatile compounds, or VOCs — tiny toxins linked to cancers, asthma and fertility problems when inhaled.
Ten products released levels of the chemicals that were so high they breached European safety standards, and the VOCs lingered in the air for up to four hours.

Read the article or the full study in the journal Chemosphere.

“This study is a wake-up call for consumers, researchers and regulators to be more aware of the potential risks associated with the numerous chemicals entering our indoor air,” said Dr. Alexis Temkin, a senior toxicologist at the Environmental Working Group, in a news release.

This is important for people who experience chemical intolerance (CI), said Dr. Claudia Miller, allergist/immunologist, professor emeritus, and leader of the TILT Program at UT Health San Antonio.

CI, also known as TILT (Toxicant Induced Loss of Tolerance), is a two-stage disease process initiated by a major exposure, or a series of low-level exposures, to chemicals in previously tolerable household products, foods, and drugs, which often cause symptoms in illnesses such as fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, brain fog, and more.

How can you find out your chemical sensitivity and share the news with your doctor?

Answer these three questions from Hoffman TILT’s Brief Environmental Exposure and Sensitivity Inventory (BREESI):

  1. Do you feel sick when you are exposed to tobacco smoke, certain fragrances, nail polish/remover, engine exhaust, gasoline, air fresheners, pesticides, paint/thinner, fresh tar/asphalt, cleaning supplies, new carpet or furnishings? By sick, we mean: headache, difficulty thinking, difficulty breathing, weakness, dizziness, upset stomach, etc.
  2. Are you unable to tolerate or do you have adverse or allergic reactions to any drugs or medications (such as antibiotics, anesthetics, pain relievers, X-ray contrast dye, vaccines or birth control pills), or to an implant, prosthesis, contraceptive chemical or device, or other medical/surgical/dental material or procedure?
  3. Are you unable to tolerate or do you have adverse reactions to any foods such as dairy products, wheat, corn, eggs, caffeine, alcoholic beverages, or food additives (e.g., MSG, food dye)?

If you answer YES to any of these three questions, take the Quick Environmental Exposure and Sensitivity Inventory (QEESI) and share the results with your doctor!