Allergy: the Toxic Burden: Introduction (03:51)
See archival footage of a documentary on allergies. Today, 30% of the world's population suffers from allergies. Patrizia Marani seeks help from top scientists to unravel the mysteries surrounding allergies.
Hygiene Hypothesis (02:48)
An allergy is an immune system's attack on elements in the environment. Prof. Ruslan Medzhitov explains the classic theory of allergy. Marani questions what in the modern environment increases the number of allergy sufferers.
Linking Allergy and Lifestyle (03:51)
Some environmental substances make the immune system more vulnerable to allergens; the ozone increases the allergic load of pollen. Prof. Claudia Tridl-Hoffman's team analyzes pollen collected from different areas and recognizes the importance of environmental influence; genes cannot explain the increase in allergy trends.
Air Pollution and Allergy (02:18)
Dr. Kari Nadeau studies the effects of air pollution on the immune system. Studies indicate that air pollution affects the immune system at the DNA level. She questions if this is reversible or irreversible.
Role of Pesticides (02:51)
Dr. Elina Jerschow states that research indicates a link between allergies and pesticides. Her team studies pesticides with a strong antibacterial affect. Jerschow explains the effects of dichlorophenols.
Killing Good Bacteria (01:50)
Nadeau cautions us about environmental interactions with our gut and the use of antibiotics; she cites a study on Triclosan.
Toxic Chemicals in Daily Life (02:36)
Dr. Shanna Swan explains how we are exposed to toxic chemicals; the toxicology of route exposure remains untested.
Phthalates and Bisphenol A (02:35)
Prof. Carl-Gustaf Bornehag found a link between allergy and the chemicals often found in plastics and cosmetic products.
Endocrine Disruptors (03:30)
Experts explain characteristics of the disruptors; they mimic natural hormones. Bornehag reflects on the impact of the disruptors on the human body and exposure in early life. Swan discusses the nude painting of a pregnant woman on her wall.
Incorrect Reading of DNA (03:08)
Endocrine disruptors can change our DNA. Experts explain the epigenetic effects discuss the epigenome; Marani summarizes.
Top Chemicals of Concern (04:41)
Experts identify hazardous chemicals in our food and how they got there. Consumers can identify plastics used in packing through recycling codes. PET plastic is the most common plastic used in processing and packaging of consumables.
Effects of Food Allergies (03:52)
Dr. Thomas Rau explains the correlation between food allergies and other allergies, and discusses the increase of heavy metals present in patients. He believes the destruction of gut bacteria and the decline of trace elements are the underlying reasons for the allergy epidemic.
Biodynamic Urban Farm (02:26)
Gardeners grow ancient types of wheat. Silvano Cristiani explains the gardening process and compares it to modern wheat.
Allergic Reactions (02:22)
Medzhitov's theory suggests that allergy is a pathological and biological response to the attack on our immune system from environmental sources; allergic responses could be protective.
Allergic Defense (03:29)
Medzhitov explains how allergies can successfully defend us; allergy symptoms are designed to "get something out."
Toxic Internal Environment (03:55)
Elizabeth Salter Green reveals toxic items found in the average home.
Identifying Toxic Chemicals (04:27)
Swan discusses the reduction of toxins in cosmetics; over 80,000 chemicals are in commerce. Bornehag cites the lack of labeling on many products; humans have a toxic body load. Experts consider dosage and "dose at the right time."
Programs to Reduce Health Risks of Chemical Pollution (03:57)
Dominique Belpomme discusses the three fundamental articles of the "Paris Appeal" signed in 2004. Watze de Wolf discusses the elements of REACH intended to protect the health of Europeans and recently restricted compounds.
Restricted Compounds? (02:56)
Wolf states that BPA is undergoing a review and that regulatory guidelines for endocrine disruptors are in continued discussion. He explains why producers are not required to place hazardous chemicals on labels. Belpomme criticizes the politics of health.
What Can Consumers Do? (04:08)
Consumers take for granted that products are safe. Tips include: eliminate allergens, ensure good air circulation, minimize plastic packaging and storage, do not use non-stick pans, eat organically, eat a healthy diet, and increase intestinal flora.
Healthy Diet (02:37)
Rau treats patients with detoxification and an organic diet. Eliminating processed foods helps minimize exposure to allergens and toxic chemicals; Marani purchases organic foods. Christiani summarizes a study on biodynamic food.
Living in Noxious Environments (02:32)
Medzhitov considers allergy treatments and why some people suffer from allergies while others do not— environmental sentinels.
Combating Toxic Exposure (01:36)
The number of allergy sufferers is an "alarm bell of environmental risks." Worldwide initiatives challenge the status quo.
Credits: Allergy: the Toxic Burden (01:04)
Credits: Allergy: the Toxic Burden
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