Chemical exposure exists all around us, avoiding the contamination is a full time job. Some are worse than others. Knowing your sensitivity to exposure is key, if there is a compromised immune system, being on high alert is valuable. 

These chemicals are new, it is yet unknown what they can fully do to our bodies. Speculation points to damaging the liver, the kidneys and stressing the system overall. Whether they are stored in our fat cells, in our joints or eliminated is unknown – as they have not been studied on these levels. 


MedHelp says dry erase markers cause body aches and swollen lymph nodes in the head and neck area. 

The Washington State Department of Health Guidance For Healthy Classrooms says, “Traditional dry erase markers can contain a chemical solvent xylene, which can cause headaches and breathing difficulties. The school supply list should specify low-odor and AP certified non-toxic dry-erase markers or crayons. Dry-erase crayons are the best choice when children work on individual white boards.” They go on to say, “Fragrance-free products have no scent added while unscented products can have chemicals added to mask the original scent!”

Delaware Online, part of the USA Today Network, says, “Dry-erase markers tested positive for benzene, which has been linked to disruptions in sexual reproduction, liver and kidney function and immune system function.” 

The International Journal of Environmental Analytical Chemistry studied dry erase markers and found shocking results. They, “We tested a total of 101 markers and report emission rates for 60 chemicals. Permanent and dry erase markers had average total VOC emissions more than 400 times higher than highlighters and washable markers. Alcohols were the most highly emitted class of VOCs from permanent and dry erase markers.”

The Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) has been studying the safety of dry erase markers, with initial findings causing them to put restrictions on the use of dry erase markers and created a law restricting purchases of certain products.

UC Berkeley, School of Public Health reports concern regarding exposure in child facilities saying, “Children are more vulnerable to environmental exposures than adults because they breathe more air, eat more food, and drink more water per unit of body weight compared to adults.”

A bigger concern is the white board dry erase marker cleaner. OEHHA, California Environmental Protection Agency, puts together a list of “Art and Craft Materials That CANNOT Be Purchased” for use in Kindergarten through 6th Grade. California Education Code Section 32064 prohibits the purchase of Expo 2 White Board Cleaner for Dry Erase Surfaces due to bearing a hazardous label. They prohibit the purchase of Sanford LP Expo Cleaning Wipes for Dry Erase Boards also for bearing a hazardous label. They prohibit the purchase of Sanford LP Expo Industrial White Board Cleaner due to bearing a cautionary label. They prohibit the purchase of Sanford LP Expo White Board Cleaner for Dry Erase Surfaces due to bearing a hazard label. These guidelines were established in 2014. 

One case example of Arizona twin boys shows how quickly someone with a compromised immune system can end up in a wheelchair potentially from simple exposure to dry erase markers. The boys were exposed to the dry erase markers in their school room, over and over, and saw rapid continual decline. Their joints became weak, legs would hyper extend and they ended up in wheelchairs within three months, at six years of age. Click here to read more. 

*Nourishing Plot is written by Becky Plotner, ND, traditional naturopath, CGP, D.PSc. who sees clients in Rossville, Georgia. She is a Board Certified Naturopathic Doctor, through The American Naturopathic Medical Association and works as a Certified GAPS Practitioner who sees clients in her office, Skype and phone. She has been published in Wise Traditions, spoken at two Weston A. Price Conferences, Certified GAPS Practitioner Trainings, has been on many radio shows, television shows and writes for Nourishing Plot. Since her son was delivered from the effects of autism (Asperger’s syndrome), ADHD, bipolar disorder/manic depression, hypoglycemia and dyslexia, through food, she continued her education specializing in Leaky Gut and parasitology through Duke University, finishing with distinction. She is a Chapter Leader for The Weston A. Price Foundation. becky.nourishingplot@hotmail.com

“GAPS™ and Gut and Psychology Syndrome™ are the trademark and copyright of Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride. The right of Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride to be identified as the author of this work has been asserted by her in accordance with the Copyright, Patent and Designs Act 1988.

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