Autoimmune Trivia – clothing choices for health

I have a new ugly sunhat and it gets just as many funny looks as the last ugly sunhat – sometimes there is no winning solution if you are unhealthy except to do what you have to do to stay healthy. I thought the new hat was slightly less odd as it’s a straw hat, summery, but oh well. I need a broad brim for sun protection. Cute hats don’t always have a brim or a large floppy beach hat has too much brim and can obstruct your ability to see.

Due to a tendency to develop severe rashes or eczema I need natural fibers. Modern fabrics can leave me itching and as my autoimmune disease has worsened I’ve even had problems with rashes that lead to a lack of skin – an open sore over a large patch is painful more than itchy. Fashion may be fun but not as much fun as having skin. Sewing my own clothes allows my own fabric choices. Hunting through resale shops for natural fiber clothing can be another way to find items that don’t make me sick. Organically grown cotton products are available in limited styles and limited places for a price that is generally more than a department store price but probably less than an expensive fashionable brand.

Laundry detergents or fabric softeners can also leave me with an allergic reaction. Having overactive white blood cells means the allergic and autoimmune sensitivities are more likely to occur – there is one bonus, cancer cells may be more likely to be identified and removed. Until it is a severe condition someone with autoimmune disease may be less likely to have cancer due to the overactive white blood cells. Increased inflammation in a patient and those with “dermatomyositis,” type of infllammatory autoimmune disease were more associated with cancer risk than some other types of arthritis like autoimmune diseases, “systemic autoimmune rheumatic diseases (SARDs), in a large study.” [3] Someone with autoimmune disease can be at greater risk of developing another type of autoimmune disease however. [1]

Adequate treatment of hypothyroidism might have an additional benefit of reducing risk of demyelination and development of Multiple sclerosis. [1]

“For example, an intriguing finding based on a rodent model of chronic demyelination indicates that administration of thyroid hormone can enhance remyelination under certain conditions (3132). Relevance of this finding to multiple sclerosis in humans is unknown, but, hypothetically, routine treatment of hypothyroidism could diminish the risk of multiple sclerosis.” [1]

The sunhat is helping reduce inflammatory reactions that can make underlying autoimmune symptoms worse. Oxidative stress is another way to say inflammatory reactions and a variety of things in addition to excessive sun exposure can lead to oxidative stress and increased production of free radicals – a type of reactive chemical which antioxidant foods helps to detoxify safely rather than allowing an increase in negative health symptoms. Pollution and smoking can also be external factors in addition to excess sun exposure which can be a cause of inflammatory oxidative stress. [2]

Eating adequate but not necessarily excessive amounts of antioxidant rich foods can help the body detoxify the free radical chemicals safely. Excessive supplements or very rich food sources of antioxidants can tip the chemical balance too far in the other direction. Studies with supplements of vitamin E and vitamin A found that some is good but more isn’t. Sesame seeds are a good source of a variety of nutrients and have been tested for helping with the oxidative stress caused by athletic exercise, two tablespoons per day were found to be a helpful and safe amount. See: Effects of Sesame (Sesamum indicum L.) Supplementation on Creatine Kinase, Lactate Dehydrogenase, Oxidative Stress Markers, and Aerobic Capacity in Semi-Professional Soccer Players. [4(G3.8)]

More information antioxidant rich foods and on oxidative stress and who is more at risk of having inflammatory oxidative stress reactions is available in this post on my other blog site:

  • Disclaimer: Opinions are my own and the information is provided for educational purposes within the guidelines of fair use. While I am a Registered Dietitian this information is not intended to provide individual health guidance. Please see a health professional for individual health care purposes.
  1. Emily C. Somers Sara L. Thomas Liam Smeeth Andrew J. Hall, 

    Are Individuals With an Autoimmune Disease at Higher Risk of a Second Autoimmune Disorder?, American Journal of Epidemiology, Volume 169, Issue 6, 15 March 2009, Pages 749–755

  2. Anu Rahal,  Amit Kumar,  Vivek Singh,  Brijesh Yadav,  Ruchi Tiwari,  Sandip Chakraborty,  and Kuldeep Dhama, Oxidative Stress, Prooxidants, and Antioxidants: The Interplay, Biomed Res Int. 2014; 2014: 761264.
  3. Kuang-Hui Yu, MD, Chang-Fu Kuo, MD, PhD, Lu Hsiang Huang, MSc, Wen-Kuan Huang, MD, and Lai-Chu See, PhD, Cancer Risk in Patients With Inflammatory Systemic Autoimmune Rheumatic Diseases, Medicine (Baltimore). 2016 May; 95(18): e3540

  4. 8. Barbosa CV, Silva AS, de Oliveira CV, et al., Effects of Sesame (Sesamum indicum L.) Supplementation on Creatine Kinase, Lactate Dehydrogenase, Oxidative Stress Markers, and Aerobic Capacity in Semi-Professional Soccer Players. Front Physiol. 2017 Mar 31;8:196.  (G.8)

What is racist is unfair housing and food policies

Additional note – 11/1/17 – it was brought to my attention that at least one person thought I was trying to redefine “racism” by bringing up economic differences and there was a suggestion to check the dictionary instead. that person may not have checked the dictionary however because the definition at includes national policy that discriminates against some racial groups at the benefit of other groups as part of the definition of racism. Hatred for a racial group and stereotyping expectations about all members of a group based on a certain expected ‘profile’ or stereotype of one type of person with the belief that it makes one group inferior and the other superior with a right to dominant over the alleged inferior group is also included in the definition. See “racism:”

Wealth inequality with differences between racial groups is real and has gotten worse over the last few years or decades.

While personal interviews suggest that people from African American or Hispanic groups feel they do have more opportunities to improve their economic future than their parents had, the actual economic differences on average between ethnic groups in the U.S. are very wide. People of white ethnic groups who were interviewed reported feeling they had less opportunity to improve their economic future than their parents. Looking at the numbers might make it clear where the true difference lies – how well off the different sets of parents were at is significant. A young adult of white ethnic groups would have as an average goal to achieve greater than $134,320 Median Household Wealth (I never achieved that myself,  so it is a very large average to try to meet let alone surpass for the average young adult just starting their career). A young adult of African American background would be trying to achieve greater than $11,030 Median Household Wealth and a young adult of Hispanic background would be trying to achieve greater than $13,730. Median Household Wealth represents not the household salary but the balance of income and savings to total debt load.

For comparison purposes the U.S. poverty guidelines for 2017 are:

~~~~ original beginning:

Chronic illness tends to be more of a risk for people living in low income areas which tend to be located near industry or agricultural areas. And our food supply also tends to harm those with less money as processed inexpensive food may be more available in low income and some urban areas than healthier fresh fruits and vegetables.

Read more about processed food and health risks:

Chronic illness and poverty in Canadian population shows that even with a nationalized health care system the lower the socio-economic bracket a person is in, on average, the lower their expected lifespan may be and they are more likely to develop chronic diseases. One province with lower obesity and smoking rates did have lower chronic illness and reduced mortality rates compared to other areas even with the difference in socio-economic brackets:

The trend is seen in Australia also:

And in the U.S.:

Poverty itself can make life more complex and stressful due to too many bills and not enough money to pay any of them or due to challenges of transportation when public transport is the only option. Simply having more on one’s mind can make decisions and thinking more difficult for anyone based on research findings. Excess number of things to remember can slow down the thought processes for other tasks. Behavioral Economics 

Adequate health care is important but so is an adequate wholesome food supply and clean air and water. Racism is found in how we zone housing areas and distribute and charge for food and water and it affects health and lifespan – inequality is racist.

Disclaimer: Opinions are my own and the information is provided for educational purposes within the guidelines of fair use. While I am a Registered Dietitian this information is not intended to provide individual health guidance. Please see a health professional for individual health care purposes

Anti-Semitism and Anti-Zionism are not the same

Anti-Semitism is different from anti-Zionism. Zionism refers historically to the goal to turn the nation of Palestine into the nation of Israel and allow Jewish families to settle there, which did occur. Many Jewish people were against the Zionism movement at the time because the movement used harsh tactics and also possibly because many Jewish people preferred to live where-ever they were already living at the time and they didn’t want to move to Palestine. Some Jewish people at the time also preferred to continue working towards coexisting with other ethnic groups; as many Jewish people were being comfortably accepted within mixed communities at the time. These anti-Zionist Jewish people didn’t want the Jewish people as a group to be seen to be working towards becoming more exclusionary  by seeking a separate nation for a religious group – as that is the opposite of becoming more accepted and fitting in within a culturally mixed nation.

Anti-Semitism refers to discrimination and hate crimes aimed at all people of Jewish background which became more prolific during World War II.

Currently in the United States there has been increased interest and support of the anti-Zionist movement to Boycott, Divest, Sanction (BDS) Israel for the maltreatment of Palestinian people. But there has also been an increase in anti-Semitic attacks of Jewish reporters and other Jewish people and Jewish topics in general which seems to have been brought out by the negative tone of the 2016 Presidential campaign.

This link discusses anti-semitism and anti-zionism:

And this link takes a closer look at the changes that have been seen during the 2016 political season:

I have a few posts on this website about anti-Zionism and the maltreatment of Palestinian people but It is not in support of anti-Semitism or in support of mistreatment of Jewish people simply because they are Jewish. That would be no better than mistreating Palestinian people just because they live in Palestine.

Here’s a link about a different group of people who have experienced both discrimination and the 2016 political season and they have some common sense to share with younger generations — no one, no candidate is perfect, and turning the clock backwards on civil rights would be worse than voting for someone who is just not perfect:

This is 2016 rather than 1945, we need to accept that people have differences and work together to share our planet’s resources instead of destroying the planet’s dwindling resources with bombs and pollutants. We as a species seem to be excelling at causing the extinction of other species; it would seem sensible to start worrying more about the longterm viability of our species and the planet and less about blowing each other up in the name of loving God. I don’t remember ever hearing that God said go forth and bomb but I do remember a line about going forth and procreating. Pouring poisonous chemicals on our planet is ruining the ability of many species to go forth and procreate — including our own. Eventually the policy writers will realize that money can’t really buy health or fertility — but will they discover it in time to save our species or other species from becoming extinct?

No one is perfect and that includes the policy writers — It’s time to rewrite how we’re doing things before the future arrives and we find out that it has been damaged in ways that we won’t be able to repair but will have to cope with anyway. Seven species of wild bees in Hawaii have been declared endangered. Hawaii has been used extensively for development of genetically modified crops that are resistant to herbicides. Citizens have been sickened by the large amounts of agribusiness chemicals that have been used on Hawaiian islands. Bees are a major group of pollinator’s for many types of wild plants and commercial crops. Rumor suggests that the agribusiness Monsanto has been working on creating genetically modified flying ants to become a replacement pollinator for the dying bees — wouldn’t not poisoning the original pollinator’s make more sense – especially as their health affects the health of the entire food chain — which we also depend on for our survival as a species.

Albert Einstein was Jewish and he was anti-Zionist and he cared about bees.

“If the bee disappeared off the surface of the globe, then man would have only four years of life left. No more bees, no more pollination, no more plants, no more animals, no more man.” – Albert Einstein []

Quotes of letters Albert Einstein wrote regarding the goals of Zionism to create a nation for Jewish people are available here: [] He supported working with the Arab people rather than making a separate nation for people of the Jewish faith and he condemned the mass murders that were committed by Jewish terrorist groups during the formation of Israel from the nation of Palestine.

I am strongly in support of equal rights for all people and against discrimination and unequal treatment of some groups by other groups. The United States is borrowing money and blowing it up in the form of drone bombs and/or giving it to Israel for them to blow up in the pursuit of taking other people’s homeland in the name of religion.

God didn’t say go forth and bomb — he said go forth and procreate – if I remember correctly. The search engine suggests that the phrase has been translated in two ways, “Be fruitful and multiply” or “Go forth and multiply.” (Genesis 1:28) The following discussion suggests that the word “multiply” is not referring to a math term but is instead referring to increasing family or community size or amount of agricultural cropland, as the study of mathematics was not as valued during early Christianity as it was valued and advanced during the history of Islam:

Going forth and multiplying is a nice idea but at some point reality has to set in regarding the size of the planet and its supply of non-renewable resources — all living things can only grow as long as nutrients are available and toxins are removed. Humans are not above reality – if we don’t take care of our waste we will poison the ecosystem for all species trying to live within it not just our own. If the bees all become extinct and we are dependent on genetically modified flying ants that have to be purchased from Monsanto will we be obeying the command to “go forth and multiply” because we created GMO flying ants or will we have just killed off all the bees and put our own species and the rest of the food chain at great risk of also becoming extinct?

Is endangering all of the species of the planet worth allowing one ethnic group (European Jewish ancestry) to take the land of other people and to harass and murder them whether they are of Muslim, Christian, or non-European (the actual Semites are the people who were native to the area where Palestine is located and some of them are Jewish and others are Muslim or Christian) Jewish background? This is a he said/she said type of story with different versions of history being emphasized by different groups — Jewish version suggests the increased economy created by the settlement of Palestine by Jewish settlers brought more Muslim immigrants to the area who hadn’t been native. See this link for more information:

History is as clear as mud but the future is ours to write — let’s write one that has fewer bombs and more cooperation (and hopefully that future will end up having more wild bees and fewer genetically modified flying ants – that part is likely as the GMO flying ant story was a fake news story that got picked as real [link].)

Never fear – some Harvard researchers have been working on robotic bees to take over pollination if we do manage to kill off all the natural bee species. [link] — I still fear the loss of our planet’s natural species.

I would rather have an ecosystem that supports life rather than have an agricultural industry that supports mini robots and kills life (the purpose of food is to support life of living creatures, not robots, so a food supply that is deadly to small organisms seems like a food supply that might not be ideal for the supporting the health of larger organisms either. An industry funded study that looks at the health consequences of a food used for a few months in an animal based study is not really proof that it is safe for the health of someone who might be eating the food throughout an eighty year life span.).

Anti-Semitism is a term that generally refers to hate crimes and discrimination of Jewish people in general while anti-Zionism refers to a political movement that was against the takeover of Palestine by Israel.

Hate crimes are wrong. Genocide is wrong. Genocide of bees is not conducive to the health of most other species living on the planet including the human race. Religion does not make it right to kill other species or ethnic groups. Fear of people who are not the same as yourself does not make it right to harass or kill people who are different from yourself.

Fear of change is not a good excuse to continue ignoring the fact that human practices are killing many other species and poisoning the long term health or our planet’s oceans, soil and air. We only have one planet, if we poison it then we are not only poisoning ourselves we are poisoning every other living thins as well — and that is not just or right — The Bible does not say that God said  go forth and multiply exponentially. Species including humans have instincts to live sustainably within the environment and to not harvest all of a species so that it will continue to flourish in future seasons.

Sharks are an example of a natural predator that tends to only take the older, weaker members of group leaving the other species as a healthier group with greater odds of survival.

By allowing groups of humans the right to pollute for profit or to bomb for territory disputes we are also providing ourselves and all the species on the planet with the right to increased rates of cancer, chronic and acute illness, and increased amounts of birth defects and infertility.

Bombing other people or building a wall will not prevent pollutants from vaporizing in warm regions and drifting on the breeze and condensing out over cooler regions. Bombing the Middle East adds pollution to the whole planet not just the Middle East. Is Zionism really worth poisoning our planet’s future?

The United States gives more money to Israel than any other nation and has pledged even more over the next ten years — is supporting Zionism more important than our own country’s or our own children’s future?

–Not to the 81% of Americans surveyed who opposed the $38 billion dollar promise to Israel:

It’s time to try some new strategies instead of continuing to blow up money in the pursuit of increased global pollution (and support of Zionism). All Jewish people are not to blame for the crimes that some caused anymore than all Americans are to blame for the drone bombing of civilians throughout many areas of the Middle East — but if we aren’t to blame than who is? It is our military industrial complex and our tax dollars and borrowed debt that is being blown up and causing an increased rate of birth defects — so as someone who has paid a fair amount of taxes over the course of my working life I do feel that we are all to blame for how our nation is spending that money — poisoning children and poisoning bees is not something I’m proud of, it’s not humane or sensible or sustainable — it costs a lot of money to build a bomb and blow it up — ignoring the cost of  lost lives, clean up and repair — because that doesn’t seem to be important to anyone but the survivors.

Empathy exercise — think about the 9/11 bombing of the Twin Towers — now multiply that by bombings going on for many years in many cities — seems kind of a lot worse when you go forth and multiply the terror over decades, over an entire region.

/Disclaimer: This information is provided for educational purposes within the guidelines of fair use. While I am a Registered Dietitian this information is not intended to provide individual health guidance. Please see a health professional for individual health care purposes./

Other fringe topics revealed the connection between our health and that of the environment

Recently I wrote about a quote regarding investigative reporting and mainstream media. According to the quote investigative reporting is the job of fringe investigators, rather than a job for mainstream media. [Fringe Reports]

Vitamin D and hormone D metabolism has been an my self assigned Don Quixote project but I have also written about other health topics in the past that had seemed to be suppressed or ignored by the mainstream media at the time.

Ignoring or suppressing worrisome events in the news may seem more comfortable in the short term but not addressing unspoken anxieties can lead to greater fear and worse problems over time. Not addressing problems also wastes time that could have been used to develop and implement improved strategies. Worrying by itself is not helpful but worrying that leads to improved procedures can save time, money and health over the long run.

I’m going to summarize some other fringe topics from my archives as a review of what we may not have heard much about over the last few years.

Fracking – I learned about the hydraulic fracturing technique used in the petroleum industry in a round-about way. Over the years I had noticed that the pets and pet farm animals of a family I knew living in the north east area of Ohio that seemed to have roughly a 25% cancer rate – whenever I talked to the family it seemed like at least one of the family’s animals had cancer. It was a hobby farm so there weren’t chemicals being sprayed on their own land but they did live within a farming community. What I discovered when I started searching for information about cancer prevalence in the area was that children in the area also had been having an increased rate of cancer. [1]

However the types of cancers varied among the children and the types of contaminants found in the ground water supplies that were tested varied from area to area – no specific culprit or toxin could be named or held accountable – except that coincidentally hydraulic fracturing techniques had been used in the area since approximately 1965. [2, includes an interactive map of Ohio marked with locations where fracking incidents have occurred. Governor Kasich’s policies in Ohio have allowed for expansion of the fracking industry in the state and have even allowed waste water from fracking operations taking place in other states to be stored, treated and dumped into Ohio rivers  – per the information on this link by Earthjustice, a legal defense oriented environmental nonprofit group.]

The increased rate of cancer found in children living in the northern area of Ohio was never officially blamed on fracking or on any other industry.

The technique that became known as ‘fracking’ pumps extremely large amounts of water deep underground under high pressure. The water has a mixture of unidentified and corporate protected chemical solvents added before being injected underground in order to help dissolve tiny deposits of oil from the shale rock. The water picks up more contaminants while it is deep underground and the waste water that returns to the surface has to be collected and treated as a toxin. I learned that unfortunately for our clean water supplies, during Dick Cheney’s administration businesses using hydraulic fracturing techniques were exempted from being required to follow Clean Water Act standards.

The waste water that returns to the surface may be stored in open ponds that can flood during rainy seasons and, even worse, in some places the waste water has been sprayed on dirt roads to reduce dust or even used to irrigate farm crops. [5] And wastewater has been allowed to be injected directly into underground clean water aquifers in the state of California even though there is a severe multi year long drought occurring in the state. [6]

Articles on fracking from my archives – 1 & 2 are brief with a single link, 3 is a long series of old posts copied onto one page and the formatting is wrong, sorry, many links though: [1, 2, 3]

Citizens of Oklahoma and Texas and elsewhere have also been experiencing earthquakes almost daily in some places. The earthquakes may be due to the quantity of fluid that is being pumped deep underground either during the initial fracking process, or afterwards, as a way to get rid of the contaminated waste water. The citizens of Oklahoma are expected to just get used to rattling around on a regular basis as the fracking process was protected at the state level there even though the increase in earthquakes has been associated with the hydraulic fracturing techniques. [4]

I will continue this summary of other fringe topics in a series of posts.

/Disclosure: This information is provided for educational purposes within the guidelines of fair use. While I am a Registered Dietitian this information is not intended to provide individual health guidance. Please see a health professional for individual health care purposes./