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Maff

Maff

Aquasana Water Filters are currently offering up to an incredible 75% off. Simply use code: BOGO at checkout and save $$$ hundreds!
21
Nov
0
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Stress Management & Pacing Yourself When You Have Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

As someone who became ill with chronic fatigue syndrome at the age of 11 I have spent my entire adolescence and adult life struggling with the condition. My personality is one that could be classed as predominantly type A and I like to "burn the candle at both ends" as the saying goes. After being diagnosed with ME/CFS and discovering there was no treatment or cure available this led me to ignore my illness and push even harder during my teens. I continued full-time at school, took part in physical education (P.E.) classes, played soccer with my friends after school and went to parties. For a while this seemed to work as I was very happy which obviously makes you feel better anyway. Inevitably however things began to go down hill in my late teens and my life eventually came to an abrupt halt after a two semesters of university. I was then virtually bedridden...
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14
Nov
0
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Allergies have a silver lining - cancer prevention!

For those of us who suffer from the irritating and uncomfortable symptoms of allergies such as sneezing, itching, watery eyes, blocked noses, and coughing there may not seem like there could ever be a brightside to the affliction but researchers say there might well be - and it's a biggie - a reduced risk of cancer. So before you swallow another antihistamine pill or continue to use your natural allergy remedies you might want to read on..... Researchers from Cornell University in the US looked at 646 studies on allergies and cancers published in medical journals over the past 50 years; ending up with the most comprehensive database yet available on allergies and cancer. Professor of neurobiology and behaviour Paul Sherman and his team found that the number of studies concluding that allergies reduced the risk of cancer were double the number suggesting an increased risk. The types of cancer...
Tagged in: allergies Asthma cancer
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14
Nov
13
Posted by Posted on in EirBlog
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LifeWave Glutathione Patch
 I have been surprisingly impressed with LifeWave patches in the past. I have tried the Energy Enhancer patch for increased energy and stamina, the Silent Nights patch for improved sleep and the Glutathione patch and found them all to have powerful beneficial effects. When trying the Glutathione patch previously I used a standard placement on the body recommended in the accompanying booklet. Since glutathione is the body's major antioxidant and promotes detoxification the LifeWave literature warns that the wearer may "experience detoxification symptoms such as a sore throat, headache, fatigue or nausea." This is exactly what I experienced the first few times I wore the patches. Within 15 minutes of placing the patch on my body I experienced nausea, headache, and a toxic/flu-like feeling which I took as a sign that the patch was working as intended - raising glutathione levels in my body and mobilizing toxins for excretion. LifeWave claim that...
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  • adminv15
    adminv15 says #
    I am interested in the patches but have to say the homeopathics that they use cannot work. Whoever put together the 'homeopathics
  • cleon
    cleon says #
    Hey get with the program Science Guy! Lifewave is flying soooo high - if you blink you will miss it. I wonder how much you actual
  • adminv15
    adminv15 says #
    You guys are kidding, right? Lifewave is a fraud. It's a joke, with the joke being on y'all.
07
Nov
1
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Banana Plant Extract for IBS and other Digestive Disorders

As I suffer from IBS and gut dysbiosis that give me quite a few troublesome gastrointestinal symptoms a close relative recently recommended I try a supplement containing an extract from the plaintain banana plant. Plaintains are large bananas found in the tropics which have to be cooked before being eating.  I have to admit I had never even heard of this supplement but my relative has had quite severe digestive upsets for most of her life and now swears by it, saying it's the most effective treatment she's ever found. So, before trying it for myself I thought I'd use this week's blog to explore this banana plant extract and the rationale for its use in digestive disorders. The extract is made from the non-fruiting stem of the plaintain banana plant and if you look at medical studies it might be referred to by its botanical name, Musa paradisiaca, or as dried...
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  • Maff
    Maff says #
    The product is called Acitan Extract and is manufactured by Tigon. It doesn't appear to be sold widely but I've found the followin
  • adminv15
    adminv15 says #
    Do you remember the name of the supplement your relative took? I have tried everything for my IBS with no luck; who knows . . . ma
24
Oct
1
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Placebo pills for fibromyalgia and other hard to treat conditions

An article on WebMD this week addressed a very interesting issue. Should doctors give patients placebo (non-active) pills in any circumstances. It turns out this is a surprisingly common practice when doctors are faced with poorly understood chronic conditions such as fibromyalgia. A recent survey revealed that more than half of doctors give out fake prescriptions to patients and that the majority of doctors feel this practice is OK. Scientists questionned  679 internists and rheumatologists; doctors working in specialties where they often see patients with chronic illnesses or chronic pain syndromes including fibromyalgia that are difficult, and in many cases imposible, to cure. It was revealed that doctors find that placebos often provide significant benefit to such patients. The placebo effect is something that has been known of for a long time and is in fact an integral part of scientific research. It is central to the gold standard of medical...
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  • adminv15
    adminv15 says #
    As for diabetes and life threatening illnesses, it is not suitable to give a placebo. And the docs won't give a placebo because li
  • adminv15
    adminv15 says #
    To be honest, I agree completely with a doctor giving out a placebo. For the simple fact, if there is any chance a patient truly d
  • adminv15
    adminv15 says #
    This smacks of the salem witch trials. Guilty until proven innocent. Flawed weighted and often inadequate research, competitive an
17
Oct
2
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Vaccinations in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Fibromyalgia

Vaccinations in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Fibromyalgia
 At this time of year many people (in the US especially) are getting, or at least thinking about getting, flu shots. So I thought this would be an ideal time to talk about flu shots, and vaccinations in general, particularly in relation to those of us who suffer from chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS) and fibromyalgia. First of all the flu vaccine is one of the most controversial in terms of its use, efficacy and safety. Of the commonly used vaccines perhaps only MMR is more controversial due to the media circus generated by the work of Dr. Andrew Wakefield in the UK around 10 years ago. One of the main problems with the flu vaccine is that the selection of the particular virus that is put into vaccines involves a large amount of guesswork with the end result being that the actual strain causing people to get flu in a particular year is often...
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  • adminv15
    adminv15 says #
    I have hypothyroidism and fibromyalgia. I think a Tdap vaccine caused my fibro. I had the vaccine in January of 2011. A couple
  • adminv15
    adminv15 says #
    I have hypothyroidism and fibromyalgia. I do think that vaccines either give you fibromyalgia or at least make the condition wors
  • adminv15
    adminv15 says #
    I have had fibro/cfs for 22 years. I have never received a flu shot during this time as my doctor who diagnosed me, said that giv
10
Oct
2
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Powerful Environmental Illness Awareness Video

Yesterday I received an email from Steve Johnston at Liverpool Court Studios, an audio/video production house in Canada. Steve had stumbled across The Environmental Illness Resource and kindly attached a video he had made about EI for a client some time ago. The video is a short environmental illness awareness piece. It talks about environmental illness in very broad terms by pointing out that chemicals that surround us in our daily lives can have serious consequences for our health and that of those we love. Steve kindly said I could post the video on the site so here it is: http://www.ei-resource.org/index.php?option=com_seyret&Itemid=32&task=videodirectlink&id=32   The video was only made as an example on a shoestring budget but I found it extremely powerful. The storyline, visual effects and soundtrack that are used make it highly emotive and ensure it has an impact on the viewer. I'm sure the video would make many people stop for a minute to...
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  • adminv15
    adminv15 says #
    I found it to be very powerful - sometimes short and to the point can have a more profound impact. I put it on my blog to share as
  • Maff
    Maff says #
    Hi Soph, Thanks for your thoughts. I agree that perhaps the video is perhaps a bit forceful with its message without backing this
  • Soph
    Soph says #
    Yes, it's very powerful. And to someone sympathetic to environmental illness it's both incredibly moving and thought provoking.
03
Oct
0
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Food Allergy, Sensitivity & Intolerance: Eating in Restaurants

This week I was contacted by the producer of The Restaurant; a reality TV show made by the BBC here in the UK. For those who don't know, the premise of the show is that couples compete over the series/season to prove they have what it takes to run a successful restaurant. Each week they are set different challenges to test different skills required to be restauranteurs. The overall winners are set up in a restaurant of their own; financially backed and personally supported by Raymond Blanc who has a big hand in the show. The reason I was contacted by the shows producer is because in an episode to be aired on October 22nd in the UK the contestants are to be set the challenge of preparing meals for diners with special dietary needs, with a particular focus on those with coeliac/celiac disease. The contestants must therefore prepare a...
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26
Sep
0
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Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (MCBT)

The Mindful Way through Depression
You may have seen in the news media this week that new research suggests antidepressant drugs may damage men's sperm and increase the risk of infertility. Researchers from Cornell Medical Center in New York found that some men given the common SSRI antidepressant paroxetine (Paxil, Seroxat) for four weeks had far higher levels of sperm with damaged DNA. Experts say this does not necessarily mean these men would have more trouble becoming fathers but that it was certainly a cause for concern. So here we have another reason to look for alternatives to the antidepressant drugs which are prescribed to many millions of people every year. Earlier this year it was revealed that drug companies had buried studies showing that these drugs are largely ineffective in all but the most severe cases of depression. Before that paroxetine was linked to an increased risk of suicide. In a previous blog I...
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19
Sep
3
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Psychiatrists still cling to fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome being purely psychological

I was doing some searching online yesterday for new fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS) articles for the site and stumbled across a few blogs and sites maintained by psychiatrists (I will not provide links as I am not one for personal attacks).  These sites and blogs had pages dedicated to fibromyalgia and ME/CFS and I was disappointed (but not surprised) that these individuals and the speciality of psychiatry as a whole still dismiss an organic basis for these illnesses almost out of hand. If I were a cynic I might say it is almost like they are trying to hang on to patients who would be better served by other professionals and forms of treatment. One psychiatrist writing on fibromyalgia seemed to have a fondness for pointing out there are NO (his emphasis) lab tests to diagnose the condition. He used this point to bolster his position that fibromyalgia...
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  • Maff
    Maff says #
    Hi Liberty, Yes I have Dr. Pall's book on my bookshelf and also thought that chapter was fantastic. The fact is that he is an ext
  • Liberty
    Liberty says #
    hi Maff, have you read the chapter in Dr. Martin Pall's book that is entirely about how and why doctors of various types still cl
  • Maff
    Maff says #
    Hi Rhonda, I'd advise you to consult a well qualified nutritionist who can work with you and your doctor on alternative ways to l
12
Sep
2
Posted by Posted on in EirBlog
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How To Grow Fresh Air: 50 Houseplants That Purify Your Home Or Office: 50 Houseplants That Purify Your Home or Office
If you suffer from multiple chemical sensitivity (MCS), sick building syndrome, allergies, asthma, or other respiratory problems you may own or be thinking of buying an air purifier to purify the air in your home and relieve your symptoms. Modern air purifiers are certainly extremely efficient at removing troublesome chemicals from the air with their HEPA, carbon and zeolite filters. They do have their drawbacks however. They can be expensive to buy, the filters need replacing periodically, they can be noisy, and they add to your electricity bills. There is an alternative however that many of you may not have considered......house plants! That's right, research has demonstrated that certain plants are highly effective natural air purifiers. Not only that but they are cheaper to buy than their manmade counterparts, don't require filter changes, are silent, use no electricity, are much more attractive, and may even contribute to our happiness! One...
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  • adminv15
    adminv15 says #
    good article, maybe not all is true but anyone that says plants are bad needs to re-examine themselves. our ancestors died out bec
  • adminv15
    adminv15 says #
    "I would take this article with a grain of salt. It is actually the microorganisms in the soil that are degrade air pollutants."
  • adminv15
    adminv15 says #
    I would take this article with a grain of salt. It is actually the microorganisms in the soil that are degrade air pollutants. Alt
05
Sep
10
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My Adrenal Stress Index (ASI) Test Results

My Adrenal Stress Index (ASI) Test Results
Last week I conducted an Adrenal Stress Index Test (ASI) which involved filling four little test tubes with saliva at specific times throughout the day (8am, noon, 4pm, and midnight). This is a surprisingly difficult thing to do as you need a good amount of bubble-free saliva in each sample. Your mouth also has to be clean so as not to contaminate the sample with food particles! The ASI measures levels of the adrenal hormones cortisol and DHEA whose levels naturally vary slightly throughout the day. These hormones help us deal with stress and provide energy and a sense of well-being. When levels aren't optimal we feel drained and fatigued and other functions such as blood sugar control and immune system function suffer. Some of the symptoms associated with abnormal levels of adrenal hormones include: - Fatigue - Feeling Drained - Hypoglycaemia/Blood Sugar Imbalance - Dizziness Upon Standing - Insomnia -...
Tagged in: adrenal cortisol DHEA
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  • adminv15
    adminv15 says #
    Maff, Just wondering: have you tried the 7 Keto variation of DHEA? (On iherb, Now Foods 7 Keto is the most reviewed product if y
  • Maff
    Maff says #
    Hi guys, Finn - I tried betaine HCL for a little while but then had a gastrogram which showed my digestive secretions (stomach ac
  • adminv15
    adminv15 says #
    Hi Maff Just in response to your post. I've done very well with iherb.com as a supplier to the UK. Great prices, great delivery
29
Aug
0
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Be prepared for Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)

Lightbox for Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)
 We're rapidly approaching September and the end of summer now and it's around this time that the symptoms of seasonal affective disorder, with the approrpiate acronym of S.A.D generally start to make themselves felt. Some suffering from the condition may start to notice them as early as the middle of August. To avoid symptoms becoming unbearable it is best to start proven treatments as soon as possible and for best results it is often a good idea to use different approaches in combination. I myself suffer very badly from S.A.D and until I realised what the problem was I suffered deep despair and suicidal urges through the autumn and winter. Thankfully I discovered things that helped and now I no longer feel a sense of dread as this time of year approaches. So let's take a brief look at what you can do to stave off S.A.D and milder feelings of...
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22
Aug
0
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An Update on Developments at The Environmental Illness Resource

Hi all, I wanted to use my blog this week to give you a quick update on the things I am currently working on on the site and things planned for the future. For those who don't know, The Environmental Illness Resource is essentially a one man show run by myself, Matthew Hogg (Maff). I suffer, or thankfully in some cases have sufferered, from a number of the conditions the site addresses. The pace at which I can work is therefore limited and a site of this size and scope really needs more than one person working on it......unfortunately something outside of a very limited budget at the moment! I hope then that you will have patience while the full potential of the site is realised. For 5 months in summer 2007 I worked non-stop to develop the current version of the site. This version provides for a number of interactive features which...
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15
Aug
0
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Mitochondrial dysfunction, autism and environmental illness

Back in February of this year the US government admitted that in the case of young Hannah Poling, a reaction to vaccinations she received had resulted in her developing autism. This admission sent the media, bloggers and online autism forums into a spin with many seeing it as concrete proof that vaccines are the cause, or at least a cause, of the developmental disorder. Medical experts however maintained that Hannah had an underlying mitochondrial disorder, which they said, was extremely rare and so the same process could not account for a significant number of other cases of autism. It now turns out however, that the medical experts may have been wrong! Results of a new study announced on Monday by the United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation (UMDF) reveal that at least one in 200 healthy humans "harbors a pathogenic mitochondrial mutation that potentially causes disease." The landmark study is published in the current issue of the...
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08
Aug
10
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Multiple Chemical Sensitivity and Face Masks

Matthew Hogg, multiple chemical sensitivity sufferer, wearing carbon face mask 2003
Those of us severely affected by multiple chemical sensitivity (MCS) often have no option but to resort to wearing face masks containing carbon filters to protect us from volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in the form of perfume, fragranced products, tobacco smoke, diesel fumes and many other sources. For me wearing such a mask was both a blessing and a curse. A blessing because for the first time since developing severe chemical sensitivities I could once again be around people and venture out from the safe haven of my chemical-free home. A curse because clearly, a carbon filter face mask is not the height of fashion and draws much unwanted attention when out in public. A hard thing to deal with when you are a touch on the shy and self-concious side as I am!   Me in the summer of 2003 in Bishop Monkton, near Harrogate, England. When I first developed...
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  • adminv15
    adminv15 says #
    I have had mcs for 15 years now, and am just finally starting to recover from it, so it is possible to recover even after having i
  • adminv15
    adminv15 says #
    I have MCS and it continues to get worse with time. Purchased two air cleaners from Austin Air for chemical removal and became al
  • adminv15
    adminv15 says #
    Hi Maff I just created a post about the good and bad elements of wearing a mask http://the-labyrinth.com/2012/08/07/a-masked-dual
01
Aug
1
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Study Says Fragrances Are Toxic, Fragrance Industry Says They Are Not

A study that hit the news this past week has caused a bit of a stir in the fragrance industry. Researcher Anne C. Steinemann, PhD, a professor of civil and environmental engineering and public affairs at the University of Washington, Seattle, revealed that common fragranced products such as laundry detergent/fabric softeners and air fresheners emit dozens of different chemicals, some of which are regulated as toxic or hazardous under US law. Not only that but NONE of these chemicals appear on the labels of such products so consumers are completely in the dark about the toxins they may be filling their homes with. Under US law (and in many other countries outside Europe) there is no requirement for manufacturers of fragranced products to list all of the chemicals in a particular product, even if an ingredient if officially classed as hazardous. All manufacturers need to do in such cases is put a warning label on the...
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  • Maff
    Maff says #
    Hi, I'm really glad you appreciated this blog. I'm just happy to see more and more brands are starting to produce more eco-friendl
  • adminv15
    adminv15 says #
    It is refreshing (not only because public spread of this kind of information may help to reduce fragrance-related air pollutants)
18
Jul
0
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Supplements and Medications to Increase Energy

Fatigue is a symptom which is common and particularly debilitating in environmental illnesses, as well as in many other chronic diseases (e.g. heart disease). Fortunately there are a number of nutritional supplements, herbs, and medications which in many cases can significantly improve your energy levels and therefore improve your ability to function normally so you can enjoy life once again. Fatigue or lack of energy can be the result of a number of factors. Physical fatigue may be the result of mitochondrial dysfunction or a poor supply of oxygen to the cells. The mitochondria are the part of the cell which generate energy aerobically (with oxygen). Fatigue may also be mental. Mental fatigue can often be hard to distinguish from physical fatigue as they more often than not occur together. However, mental fatigue can result from an imbalance in the levels of certain energising neurotransmitters in the brain or may...
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20
Jun
6
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Are sunlight and vitamin D good for chronic fatigue syndrome?

Vitamin D Sources: Sunlight & Foods
Tomorrow is the longest day of the year and the official start of summer in the northern hemisphere (Sorry Aus/NZ etc!). Here in the UK the longer days mean that at least there is more chance of there being periods of clear skies while it is still light! So I thought this would be a good time to discuss sunshine and vitamin D in relation to chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS) as there seems to be some disagreement over  how vitamin D metabolism is affected in patients and whether extra, either from sunlight or supplements, is needed. From a personal perspective, as part of my illness I suffer from seasonal affective disorder (S.A.D.) which is also known as winter depression. For a number of years I would become suicidally depressed during the winter months and then my mood would lift substantially from late March. After a few years of this it became...
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  • adminv15
    adminv15 says #
    This is an old blog now but still relevant. Since first posting on this blog I have used 5000IU vitamin D3 daily for two years. It
  • adminv15
    adminv15 says #
    so pretty.You are a good teacher. Lucky student!,http://www.michaelkorsoutlets.ca
  • adminv15
    adminv15 says #
    I am no Dr but I was diagnosed with CFS about 10 years ago and have just had a Vitamin D3 blood test done by my consultant which s
13
Jun
0
Posted by Posted on in EirBlog
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Multiple Chemical Sensitivity is in the news!

There was a time not so long ago when nobody had even heard of Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS). In fact, when I first developed the condition only 7 years ago I didn't meet anybody who had heard of it, apart from others who were suffering like I was. This lack of awareness only adds to the considerable suffering and feelings of isolation that come with being affected by MCS.  As any MCS sufferer will tell you it's one thing to have a disabling illness and quite another to have nobody believe you have a disabling illness! Thankfully awareness of MCS now seems to be spreading thanks to a steady stream of coverage in the mainstream media. To stay on top of things I receive daily email updates from the Google News website (Google Alerts) on all topics relating to what we cover here at The Environmental Illness Resource. Not long ago there were rarely any...
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  • adminv15
    adminv15 says #
    Hi, Kenneth, I too have a chemical sensitivity to perfumes. I am also a targeted individual. What is happening to your friend s
  • adminv15
    adminv15 says #
    I have a friend who has a perfume and chemical sensitivity who lives in subsidized housing here in the USA in Portland, Oregon and
  • adminv15
    adminv15 says #
    Thanks for the ACC link. I wrote feedback about the quote. It was quite the insult. Though, I am happy that there is an increase i