The subject of this article says she has multiple chemical sensitivity (MCS), which the medical establishment doesn’t seem to recognize as a real disorder. I don’t know, though — being very sensitive to fragrance myself, I suspect there might be something there, although I hadn’t thought to connect other types of symptoms (such as fatigue) to a chemical sensitivity.
This article reminds me of a major concern of mine, which is that manufacturing companies use all sorts of chemicals in the products that they sell to us, and there is no assurance that they are really safe. Further, these companies are not required to disclose to the public exactly what they use in their manufacturing process, which means we do not get the information necessary to do our own research, which would allow us to choose the safest products.
Some organizations have been studying certain chemical compounds and their effects. For example, over the past few years there has been a lot of press regarding the estrogenic properties of phthalates, for example, which has led to many companies moving away from using these chemicals in their products. Since phthalates are contained in virtually all plastics and can be especially harmful to infant boys, mothers armed with this knowledge have been choosing glass bottles over plastic bottles, which is more healthy.
I myself am most concerned about chemicals in personal care products and cosmetics, but that requires a separate post.