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The Boston Globe

Health & wellness

Daily Dose

Are worries about chemical danger overblown?

Concerns about the dangers caused by the use of man-made chemicals in our environment has caused what Gordon Gribble, a professor of organic chemistry at Dartmouth, calls a “colossal mess,” causing some people to go to extreme lengths to avoid such chemicals.

Some people take pains to avoid all things that they identify as dangerous chemicals to the point that it impairs their daily lives, a phenomenon known as “chemophobia.” It has spawned a multi-million dollar industry marketing foods and cleaning products labeled “all natural” or “chemical free.”

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