Industrial chemicals - cause of Crohn's?

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Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 559
   Posted 3/19/2008 8:29 AM (GMT -7)   
I (and others on this forum) have spent some time debating the possible causes of Crohn's. Today, I found a great article about autoimmune diseases in general. They are increasing dramatically all over the world, and in the USA today, 1 in 12 persons has an autoimmune disease.

The author of the article, Donna Jackson Nakazawa, says she believes that industrial chemicals and/or pollutants are the cause. Down below the main article, in the Questions & Answer section, she writes:

Nakazawa: There are thousands of probable autogens we have not yet studied. Eighty thousand chemicals have been approved for use in our environment. Every year 1700 new chemicals are approved -- that's an average of five a day. Have scientists studied the effects on our bodies of all these chemicals? No. However, those chemicals that have been researched -- in occupational studies and in studies of lab animals -- have been shown to play a role in triggering autoimmune reactions. For example, mice exposed to pesticides -- at levels four-fold lower than the level set as acceptable for humans by the EPA -- are more susceptible to getting lupus than control mice. Mice that absorb low doses of trichloroethylene (TCE) -- a chemical used in industrial degreasers, dry-cleaning, household paint thinners, glues and adhesives -- at levels deemed safe by the EPA, and equal to what a factory worker today might encounter, quickly develop autoimmune hepatitis. And low doses of perfluorooctanoic acid, a breakdown chemical of Teflon that can be found in 96 percent of humans tested for it, impair the development of a proper immune system in rats.

We know from occupational studies in humans that these chemicals impair our immune systems in dangerous ways. In 2007, scientists from the National Institutes of Health announced -- after studying 300,000 death certificates in 26 states over a 14-year period -- that those who worked with pesticides, textiles, hand painting, solvents (such as TCE), benzene, asbestos, and other compounds were significantly more likely to die from an autoimmune disease than people who were not exposed. Other recent studies show links between working with solvents, silica dust, asbestos, PCBs and vinyl chloride and a greater likelihood of developing autoimmune disease.

I know that I have been exposed to a number of nasty chemicals on the job. Years ago, I worked as a mechanic, and was exposed to all sorts of solvents and degreasers, which I often got on my hands. Of course, more insidious are chemicals that get into our food, water and the air. You can never really know just what you've been exposed to.

The entire article can be found here
Crohn's since 1988
3 resections

Post Edited (ozonehole) : 3/19/2008 9:34:07 AM (GMT-6)

New Member

Date Joined May 2011
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 5/28/2012 10:04 PM (GMT -7)   
Ecellent theory & one i lean toward on my own reasons for crohns disease. Its a great idea how you told of your experience /exposure. My father was overseas for vietnam & had exposure to napalm. No clue how much & what not though. & of course being a child of the 80s lord knows they had no clue of the horrible effects of chemicals then & prior. I have an older sister that is a result prior to my dad being in the military & she has no known auto immune symptoms. Myself obviously i have crohns and a few other auto immune disorders as well has my mother. So in some ways you can see why i question the results of chemical exposure.
On the flip side ive read of men in history & i mean over a hundred yrs ago with possible auto immune disorders (one of which sounded spot on with the symptoms of crohns) but unfortunately we know not alot of what they ailed from.

I think it would be a great idea to share what we know of our contact with chemicals & maybe see if we can get alittle closer to shedding some light on this issue cause we all know the doctors have yet to get there.
Thanks again for your great article & lets spred our hypothesis.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Nov 2009
Total Posts : 1680
   Posted 5/29/2012 7:51 AM (GMT -7)   
I find this article fascinating. I will always believe there is an environmental link to this disease and pray one day, they will find the cause and a cure!
Dx:Ulcerative Colitis March 2008
Dx: Crohns May 2008
Avascular necrosis bilateral knees from Prednisone. Surgery on left knee was Oct 2011,
No colon surgeries yet but I am desperately trying to keep my colon.
8 blood transfusions, SVT due to low H&H, Anxiety during new medication injections due to past reactions.
Currently on Lialda, Ambien, xanax(prn) D3, probiotic, Rowasa, B12, fish oi

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jan 2011
Total Posts : 4691
   Posted 5/29/2012 1:11 PM (GMT -7)   
Thanks for posting this article.
Very interesting.
Rx meds didn't help me. But 4.5 mg LDN +Paleo diet +supplements =REMISSION.Protein shakes w/almond milk,Maca powder,L-Glutamine,D-Ribose,chia seeds.VSL#3,K2,VIt. D3,slippery elm bark powder.For more info,my protocol is the 11th post at this link:
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