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Keep Away from GRAS is a compilation of empirical and anecdotal evidence that leads to one inevitable conclusion: many of the substances we encounter and consume on a daily basis, substances considered “generally recognized as safe” (GRAS), may actually have serious consequences for our health and well-being.
As an internal medicine physician, author Marcela Magda Popa, MD, has seen the effect that repeated, low-dose exposure to certain common chemicals and environmental factors has had on her health and on some of her patients, who reported similar complaints. As a patient with autoimmune arthritis—that forced her into early retirement, breast abnormalities, and migraine headaches—she sought to find the environmental contributors to her disorders, and she did.
Investigating the existing information from the specialty literature, Dr. Popa found that GRAS substances may be linked to multiple other disorders, not just the ones she directly experienced. The modern medicine does not routinely take these substances into account, physicians do not usually inquire or point out these possible connections. Therefore, it is quite likely that similar complaints are more widespread but not often reported.
Through research and experimentation, she discovered that supposedly “safe” substances which she encountered daily caused or worsened her symptoms and eliminated them from her routine, much to her benefit. Now, she is sharing this valuable information with other patients so that they too can make the changes they need to live happier, healthier lives.
Marcela Magda Popa, M.D.
Author | Doctor
Marcela Magda Popa, M.D. is a Board Certified Internal Medicine physician who graduated from Carol Davilla Medical School in Bucharest, Romania and completed the residency training in the United States. After sixteen years in private practice, her autoimmune arthritis forced her into early retirement. Growing up and going through medical school and post-graduate education in Romania, thereafter continuing the training in the United States, as well as practicing here for many years, gave her the opportunity to appreciate some differences in between these two worlds, and these differences proved very useful for her observations.
Being a physician affected by certain medical conditions made her the subject of a long-lasting experiment and made her notice unusual facts, put questions in her mind and compelled her to look for answers. As she stopped practicing, she was able to analyze and research her suspicion that certain chemicals present in every day products were worsening her arthritis symptoms. Low dose exposure to certain other chemicals, also present in commonly used products may have been the culprit in her worsening migraine headaches and even the more bothersome, recurrent breast abnormalities. Eliminating them from use was much to her benefit.
Through her experience, she figured out these generally recognized as safe (GRAS) substances are not necessarily safe, inert, or inactive and our chronic but constant exposure, even at low doses, can have an as yet unidentified or not fully accepted impact on our health. She is documenting these observations in her book and sharing them with other patients who may struggle with similar conditions.