I’m Barbara McNeely, a Natural Health Coach and Chemical Sensitivity Expert in San Antonio, Texas. I help women who have dealt with chronic headaches and migraines so long, they’ve nearly grown to accept it. Together, we pinpoint their triggers and develop a plan to help them feel better and live pain-free.
At age 16, I had my first fragrance chemical induced migraine. At the time, I had no idea what was happening, but it didn’t take me long to realize it was my Emeraude perfume that was causing my pain and nausea. Assuming I was allergic to that one perfume, I ditched the bottle and thought that was the end of it… but it clearly was just the beginning.
This situation flooded me with curiosity and kicked in my problem-solving skills. The book The Double Helix by James D. Watson opened my world to science, the molecular structure of DNA and the ability to uncover solutions that linger below the surface. This led me to major in Biology at the University of Texas at San Antonio.
Unfortunately, my migraine problems persisted. Over time, the list of fragrances and perfumes that bothered me grew exponentially. I learned to cope by finding unscented (and often mediocre) versions of everything — shampoo, body soap, hair spray, dish soap, bathroom cleaner and dishwasher detergent.
But then something changed… migraines became constant. If I didn’t have one when I awoke, I had one by the time I arrived at work. We’re talking 24/7 pain. I couldn’t think, could barely work and likely should not have been driving.
At that point, I sought medical relief. They gave me pills and identified me as a “migraine sufferer.” This was helpful for about 30 seconds… then I wanted answers.
Why was this happening to me?
Why was I suddenly having constant migraines?
Why became my favorite question.
Doctors didn’t know and didn’t seem to care. They could only prescribe temporary relief in the form of a pill and blame it on hormones. Sure, hormones play a role, but they’re not always the cause of most migraines.
I knew that if I didn’t understand the source of my migraines, all the medicine in the world was never going to help me. I was going to have to solve this mystery myself.
Armed with a list of known migraine triggers and the internet, I started looking for answers. At the time, my relentless investigating became a question of life or death.
Was I going to exist as a zombie in pain or find a way to live comfortably and thrive?
Using my sharpened problem-solving skills, I began to determine triggers and learn how to avoid them. Besides the fragrances, I came up with a list that included certain
foods, chemicals and a number of environmental factors. I also learned about Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS) which is a known cause of suffering of many in our country.
By then I had resolved my PMS issues, my migraine issues and even diagnosed my gallbladder issues when doctors could not. I had turned into an investigative journalist of “all things related to health.”
Next I became a certified Natural Health Coach, developing group programs and private consultations for those who refuse to live forever with chemical sensitivity and migraines.
This led me to also formulate a line of natural deodorants (that actually work)! Now in my “lab” are natural lotions and creams, soon to be released.
Over the years, I’ve been serious about getting educated and bringing my natural problem solving skills and experience to others.
- Certified Health Coach – IIN & AADP
- Full Body Systems Graduate 2013 – Holistic Nutrition Lab
- Bachelor of Science in Biology, UTSA
- Medical Research, UTHSC-SA & Baylor College of Medicine
- Member – Holistic Chamber of Commerce
- Certified Food Allergy Safety Trainer – ELL Foundation
- Food Intolerance Training (FIT) – ELL Foundation
- Practical Application of Food Allergy Guidelines Certification – AAIS
Today, I am virtually migraine free. I still get them, but they are very infrequent and usually caused by a circumstance out of my control.
Everyone deserves to have a life free of head pain and nausea, especially those who have suffered for years. Once triggers are uncovered, the choice to suffer becomes ours.
I consider my path with migraines to be a gigantic blessing. It led me to a career and life that allows me to be well and become a source of relief to the masses.
Does the smell of fragrances or perfumes make you ill?
Are you ready to do something about your migraines?
Want to use great natural products instead of store bought varieties?
— Connect with me at “Mariposa Naturals” on Facebook.
— See my pins on Pinterest.
— Follow me on Twitter.
— Join my professional network at LinkedIn.
— Watch my videos for education and inspiration on YouTube.
And a couple of fun facts about me:
- First is the fact that I think these are fun!
- My favorite question: “Why?”
- My favorite answer: “I don’t know.” Contact me if you want that explained. (I promise the answer will not be “I don’t know!”)
- I’m a firm believer in the following quote: