Detoxifying the Toxic Minerals
The idea that society would choose to poison itself merely for industrial ease and financial gain, seems strange. Yet this is the situation regarding lead, a powerful neurotoxin. Largely due to the presence of lead in petrol, British children living in cities commonly take in, through their food and the air they breathe, higher levels of lead than the World Health Organization deem safe. The effects of such excesses of lead are hyperactivity, aggression, disturbed behaviour, lessened intelligence and difficulty sleeping, resulting in fatigue. In short, lead is as great a social phenomenon as alcohol, the only difference being that lead intoxication is not voluntary.
Only the politics behind lead, through its use in raising the octane level in petrol, and our conservatism, has allowed the current dangerous levels in our environment to continue. While official bodies in Britain do recognize the problem, they understate the number of people affected by lead intoxication. Since the first signs of most neurotoxins reveal themselves as impaired mentation and emotional instability, it is hard to measure the size of the problem we are dealing with.
In my London Clinic approximately 20 per cent of patients have excess lead levels, determined through hair mineral analysis. Of these, a number are young children who often show signs of hyperactivity, disturbed sleep, fussiness about eating, and aggressive outbursts.
The Needleman study in Birmingham compared teachers' ratings of pupils for distractibility, non-persistence, dependence, disorganization, hyperactivity, frustration, daydreaming, as well as ability on a number of tasks. They then divided the children into six groups, from high dentine lead levels to low. On each rating the higher the lead level in the group, the worse the rating. There was even a significant difference in IQ of some 5 points between those with high and low lead.
Of course, the real answer is to remove lead from petrol, which I hope will happen in the next two years. But meanwhile there are some easy and safe ways to protect yourself from excess toxic metals including lead.
Because lead is taken into the bones, where it can later be released and taken to the brain via the bloodstream, it is important to keep your calcium levels high. This helps to prevent the initial uptake of lead. Vitamin C, zinc, and alginic acid from seaweed, as well as pectin from apples, all help to carry lead out of the body. This has been shown to be effective in a number of studies, some of which used battery manufacturers, who are frequently exposed to very dangerous levels of lead. Another study by Pfeiffer treated psychiatric patients with high lead levels using only vitamin C and zinc and found a significant decrease in lead levels, dropping 25 per cent over a two month period.
Detoxifying Cadmium and Mercury
Another highly toxic metal is cadmium. Like lead it is found in car exhaust fumes, as well as paint, cigarettes, tin cans, tea and coffee, and some industrial processes. Fortunately, cadmium toxicity is rare, however since it can store in the body over a long period in time, slight but long term exposure can lead to toxicity 50 years later. One of the conditions associated with cadmium toxicity is emphysema. The Detox formula can again help protect against this metal since zinc is an antagonist of cadmium and prevents its uptake.
Mercury poisoning is very rare and is usually due to occupational exposure. As the clinical symptoms, which include tingling, headaches, fatigue, visual, hearing and speech defects, as well as paralysis and convulsions, are irreversible, it is important to pick up early signs which are forgetfulness, fatigue and headaches.
Unless there is a possibility of industrial exposure a high mercury level it is most likely due to consumption of food stuffs contaminated with mercury. High sources other than industrial are coal burning, pesticides, fungicides, large fish (e.g. tuna), batteries, paints, and cosmetics.
The sulphur containing amino acids, which are found in onions and garlic, help protect against mercury. The Detox formula together with a selenium supplement provide an even safer insurance against this metal.
Excessive levels of aluminium are quite common due to our usage of this metal for making many household products. Extremely high amounts are likely to cause symptoms such as gastrointestinal irritation, rickets, psoriasis, as well as being linked to cystic fibrosis and senility.
Such exposure can occur due to frequent use of aluminium cookware, aluminium foil, aluminium salt (most table salts), toothpaste, cigarette filters, processed cheese, cosmetics and pharmaceuticals. Many antacid tablets contain aluminium salts, which should be marked on the label, and are therefore best avoided. Apart from taking Detox, it is wise to supplement with B6, and keep down your intake of high phosphorus-containing foods, if you have high levels of aluminium. You can find your levels of both toxic and nutritional minerals by using Hair Mineral Analysis.