Fragrances. Chemical fragrances. UGH! I’m not quiet about my sensitivity or my desire for the elimination of toxic chemicals in SO many of our every day products. Through my sensitivity, I’ve been blessed to become more educated about their toxicity, which resulted in a safer home environment through the use of safer products. Even if I'm able to discover a way to eliminate my sensitivity, I will never go back to scented candles and products----ever.
I do think, however, that “diet” is hugely responsible for the way my body reacts to fragrances. Undiagnosed celiac does a number on us….and I lived most of my first forty years with undiagnosed celiac (and inflammation and malabsorption). I am blessed in that I feel I’ve become more aware of how my body is affected by what and how I eat.
I’ve searched for years to find an answer to my fragrance intolerance. That “search” and my vigilance to seeking answers always happens during those “peak sensitivity” times. And I’ve noticed that one of those "peak sensitivity" times seems to be this time of the year…. Back to school/work, (or what has been more stressful many years was wondering if I'd have work.)
This has been an unusual and a bit extra stressful few months: moving at home, moving at work. Through all this, I have not been eating as well as I should, as I was. And I haven’t been taking my supplements as I was. On top of that, my home, which has to be my safe zone (my fragrance free de-tox zone) is not always so safe anymore. We are temporarily living in an apartment, after selling our house, and while looking for another. And being in an apartment----dang, still not sure what it is completely, but dang!---I cannot seem to be completely free of chemical fragrance in my own space. Some days are fine, others, not so fine. I purchased a very expensive air purifier, and it helped a lot, but still…. Ugh! The veryclose dryer vents is probably what’s going on. I’m sure that’s a big part of it, anyway.
But, like I said, I haven’t been on top of my daily supplements these past several weeks. One of these supplements, molybdenum, is something I discovered over a year ago, through one of the “fragrance sensitivity” sites I follow. (*I am not recommending this, as I am NOT a medical professional...I am just sharing what I take and what I've learned. Brands I use may vary from time to time.) It seemed as though my sensitivity was decreasing while taking it. Amazing! Gone completely? No. Tolerable?-Definitely more so. Was it in my head? I don’t know. Maybe it was something else I was doing. (I am not a medical professional; please do your own research.)
Something else I’ve noticed. The more stressed I am, the more sugar I consume, and the more sugar I consume, the more sensitive I seem to be to fragrances. Again, coincidence? I don’t think so. There's a lot of information that describes the whys and how this all works, but I'm not wanting to dig that deeply into all that education at this moment. (insert crazy face emoji here, haha)
So, this past week has been hell! Stress is one thing---I can handle a lot----but when other issues are piled on, it put me over the top. I've been experiencing an extra hyper-sensitivity to fragrances, and a horrible nervy-pinchy-spasmy type pain in my mid back. I’ve had this before, this nervy-pinchy-spasmy thing in my back; it happens once, maybe twice a year---or maybe once every other year. And it always seems to take several days to leave. But it leaves. So far I’m on day four. I’m looking forward to saying good-bye. This is probably the worst I’ve experienced.
Feeling the impact of chemical fragrances everywhere, and feeling super hyper sensitive, it occurred to me, I haven’t been taking my molbybdenum. So I googled it again. And I found articles that confirmed what I’ve thought. It was benefiting me! (again, I’m not a doctor or medical professional, so please do your own research).
I’m not good with relating (or even completely understanding) all that technical medical jargon, but this is what I got out of the articles I’ve read: My body is not breaking down and eliminating certain toxins appropriately, which results in pain, brain fog, and hypersensitivity to chemical fragrances. (here’s one article that not only explained the fragrance sensitivity, but connected my back pain to it as well: MCS Acetaldehyde Candida Article Perfume Sensitivity - Must Read, a bit lengthy, but dang, I got a lot out of it!)
We learn to handle a certain amount of discomfort, for a certain amount of time. We all have our levels and tolerances and we all have things we are willing to live with for the things we don't want to give up. But I've reached a point where change is needed!
It's time for improvements in order to be the best me I can be.
- Continue routinely taking molybdenum
- Eat more fermented foods (I need to educate myself on how to make my own)
- Eliminate (refined) sugar from my diet for the rest of August. (THIS will be TOUGH!) I do not like feeling horrible. I do not like pain. I feel there is an answer in here and I HAVE TO DO THIS! I’ve NEVER eliminated sugar for weeks in a row before. Gluten free----heck, I’ve not cheated once since diagnosed with celiac in 2000. Sugar is another animal.
(and maybe some sugar-free recipe finds)
in the near future.