I have been allergic to Sulfa medications since I was younger but I never ever knew this extended to foods or to drinks for that matter. I recently discovered that this is in epinephrine which is what is in an epi-pen used to help an allergic reaction.
I had no idea that I even had an allergy or severe reaction to epinephrine until 2 weeks ago when I went to the dentist and was given a novacaine with this in it called Septocaine. I immediately broke out in a cold sweat, started shaking and felt like I was going to pass out. The after effects were a swollen throat and swollen face. It looked like I had a stroke on the side of my face where I was injected. This normally does not happen to me at all.
When I came home I immediately looked it up online to find out more--- apparently if you have high or low blood pressure or are allergic to sulfites you should not have epinephrine.
Wanted to share this to see if anyone else has a similar experience.
It is physically impossible to be allergic to epinephrine (epinephrine is the same as adrenaline). Our bodies produce epinephrine all the time. Also, local anesthetic cartridges contain two active ingredients: the actual anesthetic e. g. lidocaine and epinephrine. Most people who have a genuine allergic reaction to local anesthetics are not allergic to the actual anesthetic agent. It is much more common (though still rare) to be allergic to preservatives in the local anesthetic solution. So, an allergy specialist may be able to help identify the allergen and desensitize you.
I actually did have an allergic reaction to lidocaine when I was about 20 and went into vascular shock. But as you said perhaps it is just the preservatives in epinephrine (which includes sulfites) that triggers my issue. I was reading that there is epinephrine that does not contain sulfites but you have to actually have this administered in a hospital via vials v/s an epi-pen.
Actually, epinephrine is added to the local anesthetic to prolong its action. For the most commonly used local anesthetic (lidocaine 2% with 1:100,000 epi) numbs for one hour, but without the epi, it only numbs for 5-10 minutes. But if there is an allergic reaction to the preservative, a local anesthetic without epinephrine can be used. Because the usual local (lidocaine) doesn’t numb for very long without epi, mepivacaine or prilocaine without epi can be used.
Sorry about your reaction. I am allergic to sulfates/sulfites and some non-food items include Neosporin, detergents, and soaps. I learned this when I had a cut that would not heal. I went to the doctor and she saw that I was allergic to sodium laural(th) sulfate and said that I was reacting to the sulfates in the Neosporin and that from now on I should only use bacitracin zinc.
I am so glad you mentioned the neosporin, I just that on the ingredients it said that it contained a sulfate and I didn't realize this till after I used it on a cut which is still there. I don't seem to break out or anything from it, but the cut doesn't heal either.
I do try to use shampoo and conditioner and toothpaste that does not contain sodium laurel sulfate, but this was just for health purposes and not because of my allergy. I am being amazed at how many items actually contain sulfates.
I was even reading that some coffees can contain sulfates that are not organic but your reactions to ingesting them can be delayed by 10 hours. Have no idea on the truth of this but definitely something to read up on. I am learning more about this daily.
I forgot to say thank you indeed for all your explanations and responses, they are insightful indeed. This explains why I only had a reaction when they used the septocaine with epi for me getting prepped for crowns because it takes longer than normal dental work. Both times upon injection I had to ask the dentist to grab me a soda before I passed out. My blood sugar just plummeted. Or this could have just been because of my low blood pressure too?
I know someone who is allergic to Neosporin and Polysporin both. Now I'm wondering if it was actually sulfites all this time she was allergic to or if it was something else. All I know is that if Neosporin bothers you, you should undoubtedly avoid Polysporin, too, since these are nearly the same medicine.
Also if anyone has asthma and uses albuterol check the ingredients Ventolin says right on the box-- alubuterol sulfate. I now know why my pulse would be above 200 bpm and I would shake so bad I could not stand for at least 10 minutes and then I would feel like I was shaking for at least 30 min after using my rescue inhaler. I now have xopenex and I still shake but not as much nor as long.
Wow very interesting achilles2! When I use the topical cream of neosporin I don't get any side effects but I am using such a small amount that this could be why. Plus I will have to check to see if the cream has the same ingredients as the ointment.
If I ingest sulfa like in a pill form, etc. I get the shakes, palpitations, an extreme fever, and the sweats. Very similar to what I had at the dentist when I recently had a shot that contains sulfa in the epinephrine. I began to palpitate, broke out in a cold sweat, started shaking, and felt like I was going to pass out. Scary how much they use sulfa in everything.
An interesting point that people with sulfite allergies needs to be aware of:
If you eat fish be sure to only buy the fresh fish and to rinse it very well before cooking it. When the fishing fleets are out at sea and they have all that fish in the hulls, they add sulfites/sulfates in powder form to preserve the fish longer so they can stay out at sea longer.
Yeah, it is. We pretty much need to forget about convenience that sulfite preservatives offer people without the sensitivities or full blown allergies and go for the freshest foods we can get that our ancestors ate when the world didn't know about these technilogical "advances".
I would agree with those last two sentiments entirely. I rarely eat at someone else's home, but I am fortunate that my one friend I've known most of my life understands well enough to just ask.
But, this wasn't always the case, and there was a time when I got picked on about not liking onions by this friend, too.
It turned out that I am sensitive to the things. It probably won't develop into a full-blown allergy with anaphylaxis, because I won't eat them on purpose and only eat whole foods I cook myself. But, I do know I need to be on the watch, because my poor grandmother was allergic to them. She got tachycardia from them, and it was a fully diagnosed allergy. But, she got no sympathy from my mother. My mother would then get mad that my grandmother had tachycardia every time she went home after visiting our house and eating with us. She was mad at my grandmother for getting sick and would still say it was all in her head. My mother had this notion that because my grandmother would get sick from her cooking that meant that she was insulting my mother's cooking. I got treated the same way for not liking certain types of food, even though I didn't like the same food if someone else made their own recipe. Basically, her attitude towards other people stinks.
That's an extreme example, but, yeah, there are too many people who think that we're just over-reacting. When they're like my mother, they're saying that we have no business listening to our own bodies.
I did not know this forum existed ...I have just found out that the sulfites in shampoos have been the cause of my itchy scalp however I spent hours yesterday trying to find out shampoos with out any in, I googled but the ones they say have none do have .including Johnsons baby shampoo which does have it in...Any ideas gals .Thank you for the list above with other things sulfites are in I am begining to wonder if its the cause of my hives ...
"Listening to our own bodies"--- well said FurballsMom, our bodies really do tell us what we need and when we need it. Our bodies also tell us what we need to stay away from and maybe that's because either we have an intolerance to it or we already have enough of that particular supplement.
There are sulfite free hair washes. I just realized the one I have is not good. One brand I've tried in the past is called John Masters. He has a fancy studio in New York. I keep seeing infomercials for something called Wen. I have tried John Masters before. I've tried Collective Well Being Conditioner before. I didn't know they had shampoo 'til I just did a Google search trying to remember the name. I'm doing the same thing on payday. Can't do it just yet, but there is one other thing I do that may be why I didn't realize the shampoos from Earth Sciences and Jason were not the right thing for me. I use considerably less shampoo than other people already because I just get under the water and massage my scalp without torturing it more with shampoo than I need to. I still get it clean enough. I have dry hair and scalp. Always have. Collective Well Being has great conditioner, so that gives me confidence that their shampoo is good. John Masters is a good one, too. I keep seeing infomercials for Wen, but they want an arm and a leg on top of the money they're asking for. Yep, expensive. When on a budget that means forget them. But, Collective Well Being doesn't cost a whole lot more than what I have on hand now, so much more budget friendly. John Masters does cost more, but neither of these brands costs more than all that expensive stuff salons try to sell you, even in those discount hair cutting salons. And, I know they're definitely far superior. If you use it only when you really need to wash your hair and do scalp massaging in between washes to extend the times between washes, you'll find either one of these brands will last you longer than ordinary shampoo.
For deep conditioning, olive oil or coconut oil under a shower cap--overnight if you can stand it. Less if you can't. I usually do that then not shampoo it out but massage it under the shower. Very dry hair and scalp. If your needs are different, you just shampoo with one of the good brands of shampoo then use their conditioner.
I remember these products smelling good, like the herbs in the natural section of the grocery store and not bothering my allergies. And, I have loads of environmental allergies, too.
I never buy drug store shampoo. I know they're ALL full of sulfites.
There are other good sulfite free and natural shampoos, but these are the two brands I remember actual firsthand experiences with.
I almost forgot--keep in mind that natural shampoos that are sulfite free don't lather as much. But, that doesn't mean they aren't doing their job. Watch the video on John Masters, as he explains this very well. I am actually beginning to remember watching that when I tried the product. I just didn't realize that this Jason and Earth Science had sulfites. Pretty bad, since I'm a label reader. Not sure how that one slipped by. No one will ever say something bad about your hair and hygeine. Ever. Your other skin may even be happier as the shampoo flows over you while in shower or bath. I remember it feeling that soothing.
As always furballs thank you so much for all the info ..I just never thought about it before ..but it adds up to what has been happening to my hair and skin ..when I think of the tests I have had run .,I have learned that Trader Joe's does one without sulfites but they also sell food with GMO's in and dont label them so I wont shop there until they do ...I will check out the one you have said I was hoping for one from a drug store or store as I need to wash it ...I am becoming a better label reader, why dont they put the writing on the labels bigger ..
The shampoo I have found that is sulfate/sulfite free is Aubrey Organics (I found the cheapest place to get it is vitacost.com.) My sister she uses Redken's Natures Rescue as her hair does not like the Aubrey Organics.
hanks so much for all this input I have read here its been a real eye opener..Its like a light bulb has been turned on for me ..I had already stopped coloring my hair as I thought it was PPD's could be thats aswell but when my head continued to itch and no PPD's I knew it was something else going on , I had thyroid, sugar tested and a few others .nothing there.It actually fires me up that shampoo companies simply think its okay to do this what about the FDA are they not involved ..well I am going to do some research and get blasting them all ..meantime I have to wash my hair .was hoping to pick something up today ..thanks a lot....
I don't put much faith in the FDA. Mercola talks a lot about how the drug companies get their products approved and whatnot. It just doesn't add up to anything but a lot of people getting rich off of sick people. And, I kid you not, the system is set up in such a way that if you only listened to conventional medicine you would sicker than you already are and taking half a dozen more prescriptions than you already are. They also didn't raise the RDA minimum amount of vitamin D high enough to prove helpful, because they decided to only look at what the minimum amount was needed for bone health but not over all health. They're not entirely evil or anything, but one needs to look at even their guidelines with a grain of salt.
Mainly, we all have to self-advocate and self-educate and rely some on our own abilities to figure out what is right for our own bodies. We definitely can't rely on those government people to do this for us.
As far as sulfates watch out for anything that says something like has ions and/or anions, or that it is plant derived, Seventh Generation says this but if you peel off the label and read the actual ingredients you will find-- sodium laural(th) sulfate.
That's true, I did read that on their dish liquid. It's still better in general for me than commercial dish liquids, but not good for anyone with a full blown sulfite allergy.
Watch your toothpastes, too. Even your natural toothpastes have this stuff, so you have to read the labels. There are plenty that don't have the SLS or the flouride. You don't want the flouride in there either.
I don't know one that is specifically for dry mouth, but I have been using a couple of natural toothpaste brands that at least have no SLS and no flouride. There are even some that don't use mint. This is important because some people are actually very allergic to mint. And, most of us are conditioned to use mint toothpastes. Waleda is good for this. Tom's has a few that are SLS free and flouride free, but they are few and far between, so hard to find. Although the Jason shampoo ended up being a disappointment, their toothpaste if fine as far as being SLS free and flouride free. Looks like that is the only Jason product I will use from now on, now that I know their shampoo can't be used any more. Nature's Gate is what I have in the bathroom right now, and the one I have is wonderful for folks who also need a mint free toothpaste. The one I am using right now is anise. The picture is star anise, so totally different plant than the fennel plant. Sometimes fennel is called anise, and it's the spice used to give black licorice its distinctive flavor, but star anise is an entirely different plant. I'm not sure what the plant looks like either. I only know it's a different plant.
Waleda does offer a toothpaste that might work, in that it doesn't have any herbs to flavor it and it is a saline based toothpaste. It is not specifically for dry mouth, but I do know this company that is actually based in Germany stands by its products and is not going to be using standard table salt when natural salts are better overall. Not all salt is bad, but the one to definitely look out for healthwise is definitely table salt. I don't know what kind of salt they use.
My friend's husband has dry mouth. He uses whatever toothpaste he really likes, but he uses quite a bit of the Biotene mouth rinses. I think there is also an oral spray. I don't know what they have in them, but I do know that my friend and her husband are very conscientious about using natural health, so he isn't going to resort to all those lozenges meant for sore throats and coughs, including the Ricola brand. I don't think he really likes all that stuff. After a while even sugar addicts would feel the overload of all the sugar in that stuff. Plus, the sugar would actually aggravate the problem.
I mentioned the mint allergy, because I know that even if you're not actually allergic to mint that it can be irritating. It is for me with the reflux. And, I know it can irritate the skin if nothing else, so maybe using something gentler, like the anise or the fennel would still be helpful. All of the spices do have their own natural essential oils in them, and essential oils do have antibacterial properties in them that help us with bad breath.
My friend herself actually uses food grade hydrogen peroxide and aluminum free baking soda. Bob's Red Mill sells aluminum free baking soda. Don't use Arm and Hammer or the cheap stuff that is off brands we sometimes see at discounted prices. Those are only good for house cleaning. If the label does not specify it is aluminum free, steer clear of it for actual consumption. And, don't use it under your arms either if you are one who uses baking soda as a natural deodorant. Definitely use aluminum free. There are other brands, like the brand sold in the bulk foods department of my favorite grocery store. It never specified on the jar in bulk foods, so I asked them about it. They thought they had Bob's Red Mill in the aisles. They have many of his products, but not the baking soda. The brand in the bulk foods is something like Glory Bee, but the workers did check the label in the back of the warehouse and it is a clean brand that is aluminum free. So, if nothing else, you could go to Bob's Red Mill website and purchase their aluminum free baking soda and baking powder for all your actual consumption needs. And, using it orally as a toothpaste certainly counts in that department.
I didn't know baking soda in general had aluminum 'til I read about it in one of Mercola's articles. I recently read about why aluminum was added to baking soda. It started in the 1850's, so I'm guessing this was well before it was discovered that aluminum consumption is so bad for one's health. Nowadays, people actually have to actively pursue aluminum free products.
Other than these suggestions, the only other thing I can think of pursuing is asking a natural health practitioner if there is another option besides the Biotene brand. It is good that it's SLS free for reasons other than the allergies discussed in this thread. SLS is also a known irritant, so it's not just allergies to sulfites involved with this brand. Then, of course, the other reason to avoid sulfites in general, besides those of us who are either fully allergic to it or have sensitivities and need to avoid it anyway, is that SLS is a known carcinogen. Just that last bit there makes me wonder why the law says it's okay to put that stuff in personal care products.
Flouride is just as problematic as far as impacting our health, yet it gets dumped into the water supply with enthusiastic claims that it's so good for our teeth and it will do no harm to our health. Well, enough people obviously disagree or there wouldn't be toothpaste companies intentionally not adding it. I do think that those of us already fighting for our health need to avoid this one as much as we have the ability to do so.
Again, I would ask the natural health practitioner if there is another company that doesn't use flouride that can help with dry mouth. I rather doubt that the people working at the store in the natural/bulk section would really know, as much as they try to know about their products.
Got the shampoo today by Organix ..acai berry ..had quite a lot of foam , it said no sulphites on the bottle was more expensive than I hoped , but its a start 5 days of dirty hair ..not itching so far hey guys the info you are putting up here is so interesting and giving me information I wish I had always had .by the way Fluoride is poison in my opinion .....
Thank you for the info, I will be looking for what you find out about an natural alternative to Biotene. I know about fluoride-- I also get Mercola's news letters.
Also thanks for the info about baking soda, I have been confused about this. I look on the ingredients and do not see aluminum mentioned on arm&hammer or others but at the same time it does not say aluminum free on it. Thank you for clearing that up.
You're welcome. I agree about how confusing the baking soda and aluminum free is. I'm not sure why the FDA doesn't require that aluminum be put on the labels, but it's one of those things that there is a loophole involved for not being required to put that on the labels. I think it's very deceptive to do that, because so many people still don't know about the aluminum.
I love Organix Coconut. I have tried the others and not liked them as much as the Coconut one. I buy Tom's deodorant too in Lavendar and Apricot and Calendula and they work great. I can even have my 9 year old use it and not have to worry about the aluminum.
Oh, yeah, I love the Tom's of Maine deodorant. I use their unscented variety because I have so many natural allergies in addition to the topic at hand. I can't find many options from their company for the SLS and flouride free because of this, but where I shop they do have one or two options that are SLS and flouride free. I have been using other brands because of my other allergies.
Their deodorant is so nice, though. The unscented one uses hops and is very effective. It's a great option for people with a lot of sensitivities and allergies. I know people who buy this brand simply because they know it doesn't contain aluminum and because it's an affordable brand. It doesn't even cost any more than the big commercial brands.
Well I have some itchy scalp back...but I think the shampoo is working I think I over loaded on sulfites in food ,I am going to check out furballs list again,in fact I am going to re read all of this thread ,I need to become more focused on diet. I know I must be allergic to more than shampoo
soy literally throws off my menstrual cycles and makes me dizzy. I used to drink soy milk all the time, then my cycles were delayed for about a few months. Then I started to read about the phytoestrogens and eliminated it from my diet and everything returned back to normal. Now soy is in a lot more foods as just a filler, all comes back to labels.
I don't take any supplements now although I am sure I should do, but I seem to get side effects from most ..also they are removing a lot from the shelves here as there are new laws about them being sold , put in place many are hard to find .
Yeah, ever since I read the information on Mercola's website about soy, corn and canola, I've been more and more aware of what that stuff is in. It's in everything! Including the stuff that is supposed to be safe for the gluten free diet. Grr! There's an added reason to go on a whole foods type of diet. It helps a lot. This type of thinking just helps to limit how much label reading is necessary. It's also helpful, because you end up knowing better what is in your food. An easy way to think of whole foods is to consider whether or not our ancestors just two or three generations back would even know what that "food" item one is considering or not.
It is so true that soy is included in many supplements. Fortunately for most people we don't need to supplement vitamin "E". That one is especially tricky, because tocopherol is one of the ingredients that is almost always just another word for soy. This is very important to know for anyone who is avoiding soy. I learned this from another member who has such a severe allergy to soy that it has the potential to kill her. So, clearly she would be forced to know what she is talking about.
Yeah, that's the point right there. At least that way we know what we're dealing with. It means more cooking from scratch, but I would so rather do that than get sicker. Besides, in many ways, it's less expensive. Crock pots are great for busy working families. Different sized crock pots for different purposes really helps. I only have me to deal with, but I still really love my really large crock pot. It's a great way to make pot roast. It works well in the summer for cooking a whole chicken when I don't want to use the oven, too.
As far as the itchy scalp goes, you might still have things in the diet you're unaware of that has sulfites or some other ingredient you're not aware of being sensitive to.
I still deal with recurrent itchy scalp, but like I said before, what seems to help a lot is getting in the shower or bath and just massaging the scalp without any shampoo at all. A lot of times, this actually relieves the itching for a while.
Yup still have some of it, not as bad though and I think you are right FurballsMom it is still in my diet I am getting better at reading labels but some of the print is so small I have to carry a magnifying glass around with me ..I still drink some wine in the evenings ,just with dinner but theres another goody will have to go..
yup and chocolate aswell I seem to have a sweet tooth nowadys, that doesnt help.well whoever said life was easy ...just got to to what we can ..Is there any choc or wine without them, it'll be a sorry Thanksgiving and Christmas without that super Irish coffee we make ...
This year, limit how much turkey you eat, unless you know for sure the bird doesn't have saline solution added. The problem is the solution added to poultry. Try to get a bird that is fresh and never frozen. And, make sure it's organic. That reduces the chances of there being a problem with sulfites. With chicken, don't buy those bags of individually frozen chicken parts. Those do have sulfites.
Ok so I ate turkey and amazingly enough I can smell turkey in my urine... that's just odd! I don't normally eat a lot of meat but I thought well this year I will. I am also breastfeeding too and it it affecting our little guys diapers as well. I have had turkey years before but do not recall such a strong odor. We didn't have an organic turkey though, it was a "fresh" turkey and not frozen.
I hope everyone had a safe allergic reaction-free holiday :D
You did well. You got the fresh and not frozen kind. That is certainly sufficient for avoiding sulfites. Yep, turkey does have a strong odor both in consumption going in as well as when it leaves the system.
Ugh nearly everyone that ate turkey in my family was almost sick afterwards, so were others in our area. Wondering now if it was a bad turkey. It turned greenish about 3 days after. I usually don't even eat meat but I did, now I wish I hadn't grrr.
Oh, crud, maybe I should have suggested getting it at the co-op, even if it does cost a bit more there. It hardly seems fair that an almost vegetarian got stuck with a bad bird. Yeah, that would put a sour note on the whole affair. Wow, which store did you go to anyway? Was it one of the big chain stores? What was the brand label? Did you report that you and others in your neighborhood got sick from possible bad birds to the health department? It's still not too late to do so. They need to know, so they can look into the possibility that there were bad birds sold and if they were all purchased in the stores in your immediate neighborhood or if the problem was more widespread.
I just read today that soy and corn products often contain high levels of sulfites! No wonder people with sulfite allergies also have intolerance to soy based products or corn starch and corn syrup. Which is in everything! So frustrating. I have already been making all our food from scratch, but now I have to remove half the ingredients in my pantry and today I am looking up how to wash my hair with all natural ingredients. I give up looking for a bottle of shampoo! It will be cheaper and less time consumingto just make my own. The hours wasted on the internet searching and ordering products that only make my head itch more! Thanks for sharing all your wisdom, guys and gals. I thought I was alone in this mess.
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