Why am I so tired?
Heavy Metal Toxicity
What are Heavy Metals?
The term heavy metal refers to any metallic element that has a relatively high density and is toxic or poisonous at low concentrations. Examples include mercury (dental fillings and some vaccines), cadmium (cigarettes), arsenic, chromium, thallium, (from air, water and pesticides) and lead (water, paint).
Heavy metals are natural components of the Earth’s crust. They cannot be degraded or destroyed. They enter our bodies via food – typically from pesticides, drinking water (industrial wastes) and air. Many toxic pollutants are found daily in our homes, and children are very susceptible. As trace elements, some heavy metals (e.g. copper, selenium, zinc) are essential to maintain the metabolism of the human body. While you might not ingest enough for emergency poison symptoms, you may have enough that it is affecting your overall health.
Toxicity Signs and Symptoms
Heavy metal exposure is on the rise. Common sources include cigarettes, seafood, rice, well water and dental fillings. The extensive use of pesticides, especially in the US, is a big part of it.
My father was an old-school farmer and utilized pesticides extensively. At the age of 80, he developed acute pesticide poisoning and the MD sent him home with no treatment and hoped he would get over it.
Over the next year, I worked with him extensively to get him out of the wheelchair that the debilitating nerve damage had caused, and clear his dementia. His MD grudgingly commended me for the work after that long , exhausting year. He had 5 more good years before his unrelated passing.
These toxic elements can significantly increase our risk of developing conditions like dementia, infertility, diabetes and cancer. They are also known to cause damage to the liver, kidneys and brain, as well as the cardiovascular, nervous and endocrine systems.
One of the more common issues is mercury in dental fillings impacting thyroid function.
There are few definitive signs and symptoms of heavy metal accumulation over time. Most patients are misdiagnosed with other disorders such as fibromyalgia, neurological problems, kidney disease, interstitial cystitis and other syndromes with “no known cause”.
I have had patients who got minimal relief from symptoms until we did a heavy metal cleanse. Helping the body rid itself of this toxic burden allowed it to begin absorbing nutrition again, and a successful return to health began to happen quickly.
Heavy Metal Testing
Heavy metals and essential elements affect different systems of the body, so it makes sense that they can’t all be measured in the same body fluid. My tests use the most scientifically appropriate medium – either urine or dried blood spot – for test profiles.
For example, urinary cadmium is the best measure of accumulated exposure, while blood spot assesses only recent exposure. Blood is the only appropriate medium to assess lead exposure, and urine is the only appropriate medium for arsenic.
The Art of Healing
When toxins of any kind accummulate in the body instead of being eliminated, it can indicate an unhealthy need of holding on to things that no longer serve you.
Do you “let go” of control and allow life to unfold and present itself to you? Or do you try to manipulate the outcome of every circumstance? Doing this is not only exhausting, but it will cause circumstances to hang around until lessons are learned.
“That which we resist, persists”. When we let go of control and allow feelings to pass through out bodies without resistance, then we can move on with grace and ease.
The Science of Healing
Heavy Metal Testing when done properly is valuable insight to current as well as accumulated past exposures.
Getting too much, and sometimes too little, of various elements has consequences for our overall health.
Who should consider heavy metals and essential elements testing? Anyone who:
- Has exposure to private well water or aging pipes
- Is concerned about heavy metals in foods like vegetables, rice and seafood
- Has mercury dental work
- Lives in an older home or near an industrial area
- Has thyroid-related health issues
- Has or has had exposure to MRI contrast agent