Daily Archives: May 10, 2016

Dryer Sheets Cause Hormone Imbalance, Neurotoxicity, Respiratory Problems and Even Cancer (I.e they’re bad for you people!)

I’ve always gotten migraines from fabric softener a and dryer sheets so I never use them. Even highly fragranced laundry detergent will give me migraines. I’ve always thought these were bad for you and now… Well read on and decide for yourself.

Most commercial dryer sheets are loaded with all sorts of toxic chemicals including Benzyl Acetate, Benzyl Alcohol, Chloroform and Linalool; none of which are good for your health. In addition to all the chemicals that end up on your skin, when heated, the fumes are also toxic. These toxins go straight to their brain’s most sensitive neurological centers and wreck havoc
5 Killer Reasons to Ditch Dryer Sheets

Artificial Fragrances

When people use dryer sheets, they are coating their cloths with artificial chemical perfumes. These fragrance chemical are really toxic chemicals. They are known carcinogens that cause liver damage and cancer in mammals. (study)

In a recent study performed by UW professor Dr. Anne Steinemann, a research team conducted a small study to understand the effects of fragrances in laundry products (both detergent and dryer sheets). The resultsd discovered more than 25 VOCs emitted from dryer vents, with highest concentrations of acetaldehyde, acetone, and ethanol (two of which are considered carcinogenic). To put it in context, one of the carcinogenic VOC’s, acetaldehyde, had emissions that would represent 3% of total acetaldehyde emissions from automobiles in the study area. This is a major omission of toxic chemicals.
According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and industry-generated Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) from the 1990s, the following is a list of chemicals in fabric softener products, most in untested combinations.
1. Alpha-Terpineol–This chemical has been linked to disorders of the brain and nervous system, loss of muscle control, depression, and headaches

2. Benzyl acetate–Benzyl acetate has been linked to cancer of the pancreas
3. Benzyl alcohol–This upper respiratory tract irritant can cause central nervous system (CNS) disorders, headache, nausea, vomiting, dizziness and dramatic drops in blood pressure.
4. Chloroform–Neurotoxic, anesthetic and carcinogenic. Really toxic to your brain. Inhaling its vapors may cause loss of consciousness, nausea, headache, vomiting, and/or dizziness, drowsiness.
5. Ethanol– Another fabric softener ingredient which is on the EPA’s Hazardous Waste list and linked to CNS disorders.
6. Ethyl Acetate–causes headaches and is on the EPA Hazardous Waste list
7. Linalool–in studies, this chemical caused loss of muscle coordination, nervous system and brain disorders, and depression
8. Pentane–causes headaches, nausea, dizziness, fatigue, drowsiness, and depression
What’s the alternative to toxic dryer sheets? Wool balls. They are 100% natural and are effective at getting rid of static cling and wrinkles, soften clothes

Another Post of Mine in the Huffpost!


Memory Lane

I just got off the phone after leaving a message for a guy I knew back in high school.  If he hadn’t said his name during the message, I wouldn’t have known who it was.  I’d’ve thought I had a wrong number. He sounds so different.

I’m planning to talk to him about high school.  It’s to add somewhat to my memoir for grad school–get a different opinion on what I remember.  I don’t know if he will want to do that or not.  I plan on introducing he idea to him and seeing where the conversation goes from there.  We will see.

I’m still stuck in the 80’s with my music–I’ve been listening to the same set of five CD’s for about a week now and enjoying it the whole time.  I thought it would be a good background noise for the conversation:).

I’m a little nervous doing this talk.  He’s not the only one I plan on talking to but I;m limited.  I only want to talk to those I considered my friends in school, and I’m no t really in touch with very many of them, not that there were that many I really considered friends.   So I have a limited pool to draw from.  WE will see how it goes.



An Appointment With Dr. Flaky and FLOWERS!!

flower1 flower2 flower3 flower4

News Flash!  I am meeting with Dr. Flaky at 9:30 am tomorrow, Wednesday.  Not sure if she’s actually going to give me more work to do, as she says, or if she’s going to fire me.  She said she wants to pay me for what I’ve done so far,  and then give me more files.  I guess it could go either way.  In the meantime, I have nothinggggg to dooooooo.  Yesterday I planted flowers and herbs in my pots outside (YEAH!), one of my favorite things to do.  I keep going outside to look at them, they’re so fucking cute!!!  I made myself exercise first, then going to Home Depot for plants was my reward.  Today I will exercise, then go to Costco as my reward.   Not much of a reward but fuck!  I have to do something to make myself exercise!  I have gained back some of the weight I’d lost, which makes me mad as hell.  It’s due to being back on the sugar addiction, and yes it’s a fucking addiction to me, and not exercising every single day as I was.  I don’t know how I’m going to get off the sugar.  My sister said something interesting the other day, she is a PE and Health teacher and just went to a conference for the top PE Teachers in the country.  There was a talk on Eating Disorders, and she said that one of the overlooked Eating Disorders is Overeating.  Well goddamn.  I have an Eating Disorder.  It’s just that simple!  I have a terrible time controlling what I put in my mouth.  (Shush with your dirty minds!).  So I’m like, wondering, do I need to go to Overeaters Anonymous?  I think I should look into it.  Oh goodie.  Another 12-Step Program.  Well, I need to do SOMETHING because I fucking HATE being fat!!!!  When I look at pictures of myself over the years, my weight is all over the place.  Huge, svelte, and everything in between.  I sure am tired of struggling with this.  But I imagine that I will have to keep struggling if I want to achieve an ideal weight.

Well as usual this post is all over the place, as is my mind.  What the fuck, Adderall?  You’re not organizing my thoughts at all.  At least it enables me to work.  When I work, I seem to be able to concentrate and get things done.  When I have nothing to do…well I’m all over the place.  As you can see.

Whelp, it’s time to get back to my games!  Must! Achieve! 10,000 points!  Fuck, I gotta achieve SOMETHING today!!  Hope your week is going exceedingly well.  Peach out, homies!!

Filed under: Bipolar, Bipolar and Work, Psychology Shmyshmology Tagged: Bipolar, Blogging, Hope, Humor, Mental Illness, Psychology, Reader

Sunshine Day!

Didn’t have time to write a post today, but felt the need to post something. If you’re feeling blue, here’s a great song to get your toes tapping. One of my favorites.

The post Sunshine Day! appeared first on Insights From A Bipolar Bear.

How to Be a Good Friend

Yeah, I have no idea.

There are people who think I'm an awesome friend.  There are people who think I'm a horrible friend.  And there are people who've thought both at different times in our relationship.

I've thought both about myself, too.

Being a good friend is such a subjective thing.  Everyone has a different idea about what makes a good friend.  About what makes a close friend or a best friend.  Even about the difference between a friend and an acquaintance.

I've probably put way more thought into this than most, because I feel it's something I struggle with.  And it's something I think I should want to change.  I tried to want to change.  I even tried to change.  But I think I'm done.

I'm at a point in my life right now where I'm just gonna be me.

I'm not going to be what others want me to be just to avoid guilt or to feel like I'm measuring up to some mysterious golden friendship crown.

Because, to be honest, I just don't have the energy.  If you need a lot of output from your friends, if you need attention (really, any attention) to believe I care and we're friends, you shouldn't choose me as a friend.

I can do great short term.  Maybe we meet when we both have a mutual need.  Or one of us has a need when the other of us has a surplus, and we connect.  We're good for each other and good with each other.

I can drop everything to help you with your crisis.  For a while.

But then, for whatever reason, I just don't have anything else to give.  Maybe it's because my life has so many recurring and ongoing crises.  Maybe it's because of my chronic fatigue or my bipolar disorder.  Maybe it's because I'm just a crappy friend.

And then I will disappear.

Not on purpose.  Not because I'm trying to be mean.  Not because I'm consciously deciding I don't want to be your friend.  But because I have to take care of myself.  And taking care of myself often means neglecting everything and everyone but my family.  Sometimes everyone other than myself.

I will retreat.  For who knows how long.  You might reach out.  You might not.  When I'm gone like this, I probably won't reach back.  I might not even acknowledge you've tried to contact me.

I see you reaching.  I sense your need.  But I can't fill it.  And you can't fill mine.  Because I need to be alone and lick my wounds or find my way.  Or whatever.

I know I've wounded people with this behavior.  I see it.  But I'm doing triage, and I just can't see your need to be with me as a life or death thing.  Or if I do, I pray someone else will treat it, because my hands are tied behind my back.

Sometimes my behavior causes others to pull back, hoping I'll notice they've left and their absence will cause me to reach out.  But that doesn't work.  Because if I notice, which is a big if, it's entirely possible I will just be grateful to not have to fix it.  To not have to figure out the steps to the dance we were engaged in, where I was stepping on your toes.  I'll just be glad the dance is over and head to the punch.

I just truly don't know how to do the dance and am no longer interested in learning.

This is the kind of friend I can be now.  I can be happy when good things happen in your life.  I can be glad to see you when we run into each other.  I can occasionally muster the energy, physically and emotionally, to do something together.  I will think kindly of you when something reminds me of you.  And no matter how much time has passed, I will still consider you my friend.

It doesn't take much for me to consider someone my friend.  Do I know you?  Have we had positive interactions?  Yeah, that's about it.  That's all it takes.

If we're not friends, and you want me to feel that way too, you'll probably have to tell me.  Even then, I'm not sure I wouldn't still introduce you as my friend should the need arise for me to introduce you.

And if you choose to move on, if you decide (for whatever reason) that you're better off without me, I'll most likely wish you well and let you go.  I won't argue.  I won't ask you to stay.  It's just not in my nature.  I'll support your growth in whatever way you seek it.

I know a lot of this will sound harsh to many people.  That's okay.  We're all just finding our way.  And this is just one little trip on the journey of my psyche.  It's a crazy, winding path that's sometimes light and sometimes dark, but always mine.

New ‘second skin’ could zap wrinkles, ease eczema (!!!)

This is all I needed to read: “Today, researchers report that they’ve created a cream that—when rubbed on the skin—forms a transparent, flexible polymer film that restores aging skin’s youthful and elastic properties.” Wooohoooo!!!! Read on!

This is all I need to know: When does it come on the market?


There’s new hope for combatting the sags, bags, and wrinkles brought on by time. Today, researchers report that they’ve created a cream that—when rubbed on the skin—forms a transparent, flexible polymer film that restores aging skin’s youthful and elastic properties. Each application of the so-called “second skin” lasts for a day or more, and it can dramatically reduce bags under the eyes and help dry skin retain moisture, at least temporarily. Down the road, it could also help treat a wide variety of skin conditions, such as eczema and psoriasis, bringing relief to millions.

“This has huge potential,” says Suzanne Kilmer, a dermatologist at the University of California, Davis. Kilmer notes that people with eczema and other skin conditions often wrap their skin with bulky bandages or even clear plastic wrap to ensure that their medication doesn’t wipe off. “Instead of patients having to wear all that stuff, they could use this invisible film,” she says.

Our skin is subject to a wide variety of insults, from the sun’s ultraviolet rays to cuts, scratches, diseases, and—of course—the assaults of time. Youthful skin is typically highly elastic, allowing it to snap back into place if pinched or flexed. That’s partly because of a web of protein filaments in the skin that act like rubber bands to pull it into its normal shape. However, these filaments break down over time, and they aren’t replaced as quickly in elderly skin as in youthful skin, says Barbara Gilchrest, a dermatologist with Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) in Boston, who was part of the new study. The result is the sagging skin and wrinkles of old age.

For people dealing with eczema and psoriasis, rashes and dry skin can be so severe that they can’t sleep at night, says R. Rox Anderson, an MGH dermatologist who also worked on the current study. According to Anderson about 20% of children and 10% of adults in the United States suffer from eczema.

To treat these and other skin conditions, Anderson and Gilchrest have long teamed up with Robert Langer, a materials scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge. Their goal was to create a product that would restore skin’s youthful elasticity, yet be transparent and flexible. They created their first “second skin” of a silicon-polymer gel activated by a second gel, and marketed it as a way to temporarily reduce under-eye bags. But the combo, sold by a firm called Living Proof, was criticized for being too costly ($500 for a 7-week supply) and for peeling off after only 5 hours.

So Langer and his team went back to the lab. They kept the same goal, and they stuck with similar starting materials: silicon-based polymers called siloxanes, regularly used in cosmetics and widely regarded as safe. But Langer and his colleagues changed numerous components. They varied everything from the length of individual molecular chains to the makeup of chemical groups called crosslinkers that bind separate chains to one another as the gel transforms into a thin polymer film. Langer says he and his colleagues tested hundreds of different formulations. In the end, they came up with a platform that allow them to systematically change the film’s thickness, breathability, flexibility, and durability, in an effort to target different cosmetic and medical uses.

As with the previous film-forming material, users apply the new film in two steps. First, the siloxane gel is rubbed on the skin. Then, a second gel, which contains a platinum catalyst, is rubbed on top, causing the crosslinking groups to bind to one another and form a continuous film.

As the film dries, it shrinks by as much as 10%, depending upon the exact formulation. Anderson, Gilchrest, and colleagues tested their cosmetic formulation on 12 volunteers. After they applied the two gel layers on the skin under subjects’ eyes, the films shrank, pulling the skin taut. As they report today in Nature Materials, the films reduced the presence of eye bags up to 40% for 24 hours, compared with control tests with only the first gel. They devised a 1-to-5 scale that measured how prominent the eye bags were, and found in volunteers that the film reduced it by 2 points on the scale. Tests also showed that after 24 hours the film reduced skin water loss by 23% by acting as a barrier to protect dry skin. By comparison, petroleum jelly and a commercial moisturizer also reduced water loss, but only for a couple hours. Even though it has not yet been tested for eczema, psoriasis, and other debilitating skin conditions, Gilchrest says she is hopeful that it might one day offer relief to patients with such conditions. Simply giving damaged skin another protective layer could help those patients, Gilchrest says. But future versions could also come loaded with medicines designed to be slowly released over time, she says. Anderson and Langer are already getting started: They have launched a new company, Olivo Labs, to pursue those medical uses.

Epigenetic study of lactose intolerance may shed light on the origin of mental illness

“Epi” as in on top of explains the phenomenon known as epigenetic change/s. Epigenetic changes are changes on top of the genetic code. There is no change in the sequence of the DNA, but groups such as methyl or acetyl, or phosphate groups can be added to the gene, leading to either activation or inactivation of the gene. Methly groups inactivate genes, whereas phosphoryl groups activate them. By accumulating epigenetic changes on the Lactase gene over time, it can shut down the gene and the person will lose the ability to break down lactose, causing all the symptoms of lactose intolerance. The lactase gene which codes for the enzyme lactase which breaks down the milk sugar lactose, is always active in newborns till many years later. By acquiring epigenetic changes, this gene can start to get shut down, until many epigenetic changes shut it down totally in some individuals. 

This mechanism could also be at play in mental illnesses such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, these illnesses are also not present at birth, and only surface in later years. Interesting!


A new study on the epigenetics of lactose intolerance may provide an approach to understanding schizophrenia and other complex, serious illnesses.

Both lactose intolerance and schizophrenia are inherited. In addition, neither condition emerges in the first years of life, but rather both appear years or even decades later, says senior author Dr. Arturas Petronis, head of the Krembil Family Epigenetics Laboratory in the Campbell Family Mental Health Research Institute at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH).

See Also: Schizophrenia-associated genetic variants affect gene regulation in the developing brain

The study, published in Nature Structural and Molecular Biology, showed that a combination of genetics and epigenetics—factors that turn genes on or off—could explain how lactose intolerance develops over time. These basic principles can be applied to the study of more complex mental illnesses such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder or Alzheimer’s disease. All these conditions also have DNA risk factors but take decades before clinical symptoms develop, says Dr. Petronis, who also is the Tapscott Chair in Schizophrenia Studies at the University of Toronto.

More than 65 percent of adults worldwide are lactose intolerant and cannot process the milk sugar lactose. Lactose intolerance is influenced by one gene, which determines if a person will lose the ability to process lactose over time. More specifically, those with some variants of this gene will gradually produce less lactase, the enzyme that breaks down lactose, as they age.

“The question we asked is why does this change happen over time? All newborns are able to digest lactose, independently from their genetic variation,” says Dr. Petronis. “Now, we know that epigenetic factors accumulate at a very different pace in each person, depending on the genetic variants of the lactase gene.”

Over time, these epigenetic changes build up and inactivate the lactase gene in some—but not all—individuals. At this point, these individuals would start experiencing symptoms of lactose intolerance.

Don’t Miss: Working to loosen the grip of severe mental illness

Unravelling the epigenetic control of the lactase gene involved a collaborative effort of CAMH, University of Toronto, the Hospital for Sick Children, Vilnius University and the Lithuanian University of Health Sciences.

Mental illnesses are much more complex, and many more genes with their epigenetic “surroundings” are implicated. But in essence, the same molecular mechanisms may account for the delayed age of onset of illnesses, such as schizophrenia, in early adulthood, says Dr. Petronis.

The combination of genes and epigenetic factors that build up over time with age, provide a plausible avenue to investigate in illnesses such as schizophrenia. “We came up with interesting hypotheses, and possibly insights, into risk factors for brain disease by studying aging intestines,” he says.

Note: Material may have been edited for length and content. For further information, please contact the cited source.

Centre for Addiction and Mental Health   press release


Labrie Vet al. Lactase nonpersistence is directed by DNA-variation-dependent epigenetic aging.  Nature Structural & Molecular Biology, Published Online May 9 2016. doi: 10.1038/nsmb.3227

Suicide Music

I have several songs that I listen to when I am feeling suicidal and they make me feel if not better at least under control.

They are songs about fighting for your life, even if the monster is within you.

I’ll have to put together a list, maybe they’ll help someone else.