Tung oil

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Exposure to tung oil has been implicated as a potential trigger for the development of myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS). While not considered a major cause of the illness, it is believed that tung oil exposure may be the cause of some individual cases.

Tung oil, also known as China wood oil, is a drying oil extracted from the nut of the tung tree. It is commonly used as a wood finisher for furniture and other products, as well as on stone surfaces such as granite or marble.


  • Dr Paul Cheney has said that tung oil may reactivate the mono virus that is latent in 90-percent of adults.[1]
  • Dr Jay Goldstein has noted that many of his ME/CFS patients became ill after exposure to tung oil.[3] He has theorised that inhaled tung oil may cause CFS through overstimulation of Protein kinase C.[4]
  • Dr Carol Jessop reported that most of her patients had been exposed to tung oil.[5]


  • Tung oil is known to potently reactivate Epstein-Barr virus. The phorbol ester HHPA in tung oil reactivates EBV.[6]


Learn more[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. CFS – The “Invisibled” Disease - Erik Johnson
  2. Phoenix Rising - Is Glutathione Depletion an Important Part of the Pathogenesis of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome? by Richard Van Konynenburg (Independent Researcher)
  3. The Neuropharmacology of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome - Jay Goldstein
  4. Betrayal by the Brain: The Neurologic Basis of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Fibromyalgia Syndrome, and Related Neural Network, pp 126-7. Jay Goldstein. Routledge, 2013
  5. "Mysterious fatigue ailment baffles medical community" The Telegraph, July 27, 1986
  6. CFS Testing and Treatment Road Map

The information provided at this site is not intended to diagnose or treat any illness.

From MEpedia, a crowd-sourced encyclopedia of ME and CFS science and history