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heavy metal detox

Updated on October 3, 2007

Heavy Metal Detox: What you Need to Know

What comes to mind when you think of heavy metal detox? Do you think it might be the name of your teen's favorite rock band? Actually, heavy metal detox is a process by which you cleanse your body of any heavy metals, such as lead or mercury, which may have accumulated in your body. These metals can have dangerous side effects if allowed to stay in your system. Here are some ways to rid your body of these dangerous metals.

You may wonder how these metals get into your system since you don't knowingly sit around and snack on metals. Most of these come from the environment as a result of industrial pollution. For example, arsenic is often found in well water and fish as a result of water contamination. Mercury is another dangerous metal that can adversely affect your body. It can seep into the body from amalgam dental fillings. Lead poisoning is a fear for parents with small children living in older homes. If surfaces, such as walls or window fames are coated with lead based paint, and children chew or lick on them for an extended period of time, the amount of lead can build up in their bodies and they can suffer from lead poisoning.

What are the side effects of heavy metal poisoning? Heavy metals can affect the nervous, immune and cardiovascular systems. It is often hard for doctors to diagnose heavy metal poisoning since the condition may present different symptoms and complaints in different patients. Symptoms can range from irritability, headaches, fatigue and memory loss to an abnormal heart rhythm, high blood pressure or chronic bacterial, viral or fungal infections. Skin conditions such as allergies or eczema can also be a sign of heavy metal poisoning.

Chelation therapy is the most common way to remove heavy metals such as mercy or lead from the body. While chelation can be preformed either by an intravenous or oral route, most suffering from heavy metal poisoning prefer the oral route because it is less costly. These oral chelators contain substances that bind to the mercury and lead deep within body tissues and then flush them out of the body resulting in the heavy metal detox. Along with a chemical called ethylene diamine tetra-acetic acid or more simply EDTA, these chelators will also often contain algae and cilantro which naturally bind to the metals and escort them out of the body.

Performing a heavy metal detox using chelation therapy is a lengthy process. Sometimes the medicines need to be taken for as long as six months to free your body of all the poisons. Once your body's levels of heavy metals begin to return to normal, symptoms of the poisoning will begin to go away.

If you suspect you or someone you know suffers from heavy metal poisoning, see your doctor to confirm your suspicions. He or she can guide you in the right course of heavy metal detox to get you feeling your best again.

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