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CLUD #14-Environmental_9-09

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ELISA/ACT Biotechnologies LLC L R A b y E L I S A / A C T C L I N I C A L U P D AT E # 1 4 Environmental Chemicals 109 Carpenter Drive, Suite 100 • Sterling, VA 20164 • Phone: 703.450.2980 • 800.553.5472 • Fax: 703.450.2981 ® Why does EAB test for environmental chemicals, and what are the new items on the test? Over the years a variety of new technologies have been introduced to streamline and supposedly improve our foods, packaging materials, and many other commercial and industrial products. Unfortunately, many of these technological advances were too rapid, and the effects of the chemicals in these products on human health were not always evaluated. It is only now, after the fact, that the inductive role of many environmental chemicals on disease processes is coming to light. Almost every day a new report linking chronic health problems to some type of chemical or family of man-made chemicals appears. EAB recognized the role of these environmental chemicals many years ago, and introduced several such agents into its Lymphocyte Response Assay (LRA) by ELISA/ACT ® test profile. However, the public and many physicians were reluctant to accept the potential role of these agents in disease because too few scientists were reporting adverse health effects. The medical community is now ready, and for that reason EAB introduced a panel of 60 commonly encountered environmental chemicals. The items offered in the LRA by ELISA/ACT were chosen for a variety of reasons. In some cases physicians and other health professionals requested specific items, but for the most part they were selected based on their ubiquitous nature and damaging consequences for people with specific sensitivities. Most people do not give it a thought, but the wide array of chemicals we are continually exposed to is astounding! If you stopped to analyze each exposure over a 24-hour period you would be shocked! Consider first what you eat! In a Standard American Diet (SAD) alone, one would be able to list 20 to 30 additives that may or may not have been tested for their safety. Furthermore, even if the additives were tested, they are not necessarily safe for all individuals. Some of these food additives are routinely added to improve or change the texture, appearance, storage, and/or flavor of foods. For example, it is almost impossible to find canned tuna without hydrolyzed vegetable protein. Another food additive, carrageenan, is routinely added to ice cream and many types of cheese and dairy products 3,7,11 . The antioxidants BHT and BHA, which are also ubiquitous, are being added to many processed foods, such as breads, cereals, and baked goods as preservatives. Unfortunately, not all of these food constituents are harmless! Potassium bromate, an oxidizing agent commonly used in the bread-making process, may be both toxic and a renal carcinogen 15 . A list of some common food additives included on LRA by ELISA/ACT is shown in Table 1. TABLE 1: Common Food Additives Carrageenan Tragacanth Aspartame Saccharine MSG BHT, BHA If you were to look in and around your home and workplace, you would also find a wide array of hidden chemicals. Volatile organic compounds, aliphatic hydrocarbons, and/or aromatic hydrocarbons are found in gasoline, household cleaners, paints, new carpets, new clothing, building construction materials, pesticides, fertilizers, and solvents 8,16,19 . Solvents containing these chemicals are used in glues, cements, paint thinners, plastics, and adhesives for shoes. The solvents, 2-, and 3-methyl pentane (components of unleaded Diacetyl EDTA Sodium Nitrite Polysorbate Propylene Glycol Potassium Bromate Silicone Dioxide Sulfite/ Metabisulfite Sodium Laurel Sulfate Mono- and Diglycerides Benzoate, Sodium or Potas- sium Hydrolyzed Vegetable Protein: Soy TABLE 1: Common Food Additives INDEX EAB tests for environmental chemicals .... 1 How many people are sensitive to environmental chemicals?.......................... 2 What health effects are associated with environmental chemicals?.......................... 3 How can you avoid exposure? ................... 3 What can be done if sensitivities are suspected? .................................................. 4

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