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Bert's Blog™

Bert's Blog™ features anything and everything to do with what is more suitable for those living with asthma and allergies. The blog also presents information for manufacturers aiming to provide products and services for those patients with asthma and allergic diseases.

Bert takes the science of certification and talks about it with you so that all can better understand what it means to be Certified asthma & allergy friendly™. He will also discuss tips, asthma and allergy news and resources, Q&As, newly certified products and services, and more.

Bert's Blog™ will occasionally feature guest bloggers from the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA) and Allergy Standards Limited (ASL) who will talk about manufacturer tips, new Certification Standards, and industry news.

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Recent blog posts

This is a five-part blog series about the asthma & allergy friendlyCertification Program’s impact.

8.13.15 Berts Impact Part 5 Image Berts ImpactPart 5 is finally here.  I’m finally going to talk about how prevalence, "Health Mavens", tactics, and awareness all fit together like puzzle pieces to construct the asthma & allergy friendly™ Certification Program story.

Here’s the story.

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8.6.15 Benjamin Moore Natura Paint Image Product ImageIf you’ve ever been in a freshly-painted room, you probably know that the strong fumes and odors can irritate your eyes, skin, and airways. This is largely due to potentially harmful chemicals—a.k.a. volatile organic compounds (VOCs)—commonly found in many paints used in the home. VOCs are emitted into the air as the paint dries, allowing the toxic fumes to potentially trigger your asthma and allergy symptoms.

Total VOC levels can increase even after the paint dries, and this can be especially problematic for people with asthma or allergic diseases. This means that their symptoms may not only be triggered immediately following paint application, but also over time.

The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA) is proud to announce that Benjamin Moore® is introducing a solution for families living with these chronic diseases that are looking to redecorate their homes and walls! Benjamin Moore’s Natura® Premium Interior Paint is now Certified asthma & allergy friendly™ because it is scientifically proven to considerably reduce your exposure to irritants that may trigger your asthma or allergies.

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This is a five-part blog series about the asthma & allergy friendlyCertification Program’s impact.

7.30.15 Berts Impact Part 4 Image Mark AwarenessThe third post of this five-part series about the asthma & allergy friendly™ Certification Program’s impact talked about what “Health Mavens” do to improve their home’s indoor air quality.  In this post, I want to share what “Health Mavens” think when they see the Certification Mark.

From the last post, we know that not all household products are equal.  Only products with the distinctive asthma & allergy friendly™ Certification Mark are scientifically proven to be more suitable for those with asthma and allergies.  And recognition of the Mark is rapidly growing.

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7.23.15 Stanley Steemer Carpet Cleaning Image VanEarlier in the month we talked about one way to reduce asthma and allergy triggers in your carpet.  But the National Institutes of Health advises us to use more than one approach for effective allergen avoidance and control.  (It can never be simple, can it?)  So in addition to vacuuming once or twice a week, the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA) recommends having a Certified professional carpet cleaning three to four times a year.

Allergen avoidance and control can seem difficult, but the Certification Program does its best to make it as simple as possible for you through testing and certifying products and services.  Only Certified asthma & allergy friendly™ products and services—like Stanley Steemer’s Carpet Cleaning Service—are scientifically proven to be more suitable for those with asthma and allergies.  So when you see the Certification Mark alongside the Stanley Steemer name, you know their carpet cleaning service passed rigorous testing.

In fact, Stanley Steemer’s Carpet Cleaning Service is Certified because it is scientifically proven to considerably reduce your exposure to allergens.  But there’s still more to it.  A professional carpet steam cleaning service must meet strict standards during testing when:

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This is a five-part blog series about the asthma & allergy friendlyCertification Program’s impact.

7.16.15 Berts Impact Part 3 Image Health Maven TacticsThe second post of this five-part series about the asthma & allergy friendly™ Certification Program’s impact talked about who a “Health Maven” is and how they’re concerned about indoor air quality.  In this post, I want to talk with you about what a “Health Maven” does to improve their home’s indoor air quality.

From the last post, we know that 80% of “Health Mavens” put at least a moderate effort into improving their homes’ indoor air quality.  But what is it they do to help reduce triggers for their loved ones with asthma and allergies?

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7.9.15 Samsung VU3000 Image Product ShotYou’ve probably heard many times before that hard-surface flooring is best suited for reducing asthma and allergy triggers in your home.  But what if you can’t rip up the carpet because you live in an apartment or because it’s too expensive to do so?  There has to be another way to reduce triggers, right?

Well, there is another way, and that’s to vacuum your carpets once or twice a week.  But it’s important to remember that not all vacuum cleaners are equal.  Only Certified asthma & allergy friendlyvacuums—like the Samsung VU3000 Lift & Clean—are scientifically proven to be more suitable for those with asthma and allergies.

So what makes theTop of FormBottom of FormSo so Samsung VU3000 Lift & Clean a better option for people with asthma and allergies? This vacuum cleaner is scientifically proven to:

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7.6.15 Matte Release Home Reno Tips ImageThis is the peak season for do-it-yourself projects, and maybe you already have your tape measure in hand, ready to tackle a bathroom remodel, open up the floor plan or finally reimagine that unfinished basement. There are plenty of considerations to take into account with any project, including space, budget and your desired results. But you also need to think about the people who will be enjoying this space with you, especially if any of them suffer from allergies or asthma.

Whether you undertake the project yourself or you hire a professional, each project has the potential to make life easier for the allergy and asthma sufferers living in your home. To help you create the best environment for them, the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA) offers these helpful tips from its asthma & allergy friendly Certification Program:

Shut the door on bad cabinets. If you’re looking to add or replace your cabinets, you may be considering common options like pressed wood, particleboard or composite boards. These materials, however, often release high levels of volatile organic compounds such as formaldehyde. To make your new cabinets more suitable for the asthma and allergy suffers in your home, talk to manufacturers about low-VOC options instead.

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This is a five-part blog series about the asthma & allergy friendlyCertification Program’s impact.


7.2.15 Berts Impact Part 2 Image Health Mavens for ConsumersThe first post of this five-part series about the asthma & allergy friendly™ Certification Program’s impact talked about why the program was created.  In this post, I want to talk about a special group of people that you just might be a part of.

From the last post, we know that asthma and allergies affect 1 out of 5—or 60 million–Americans.  That includes children and adults.  But did you know these diseases are the 3rd most common chronic disease among children under 18?  These children need help from their moms, dads, caregivers, teachers, and doctors to manage their asthma and allergies.

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6.18.15 Wedding Season Image Wedding Sign SmallIt’s wedding season once again and it seems like everyone you know is getting married. 

Since asthma and allergies affects 1 out of 5 Americans, and over 50% of U.S. households, odds are the new couple may be among them.  With one of the worst allergy seasons in over a decade, it’s important for the new couple to keep pollen and other allergens and irritants outside so they can start their new journey on the right foot—with a healthier home.

When you’re brainstorming ideas for gifts, consider Certified asthma & allergy friendly™ products.  When you see the Certification Mark and my face, you know that product is scientifically proven to be more suitable for those with asthma and allergies.  There are a full range of products, from small to large, that can fit into a budget you feel comfortable with.

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This is a five-part blog series about the asthma & allergy friendly Certification Program’s impact. 

6.4.15 Berts Impact Part 1 Image Prevalence for Consumers

I think it’s important to really understand “the why” of an initiative—like the asthma & allergy friendly™ Certification Program—before the scope of its impact can be brought into perspective.  So why did the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA) and Allergy Standards Limited (ASL) start this certification program?

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2e1ax yoo nano3 entry 5.21.15 Keep-Pollen-Tsunami-Outside-Image Family-GrillingAfter a long winter, warmer weather is finally here!  Thank goodness, right?  That probably means you are soaking up the sun, the kids are playing outside, and your neighbors are hosting outdoor grilling parties. 

Oh, and you’re probably sneezing, itching your eyes, and blowing your nose thanks to what many are calling the “Pollen Tsunami.”

Pollen and other allergens and irritants are in the air this spring—with force—and it can be hard to keep those triggers where they belong, outside!  You can’t control outdoor triggers, but you can take a few steps to help keep them from sneaking inside your home with you.

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USA-certified-asthma-and-allergy-friendly-general-use-cert-markWho am I?

The name’s Bert.  You may have seen me around before.  My face is on the asthma & allergy friendly™ Certification Mark that’s on thousands of product packages, on national TV commercials, and in every major store across the country.

What is the Certification Mark?

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