In the last 20 years, well over 80 percent of my patients have tested positive for at least one heavy metal.
Heavy metal toxicity interferes with multiple enzymes and poisons various organs of the body, including the kidneys, neurological system, heart, and liver. In order to prevent damage to these organs, the body stores heavy metals in the fat tissue.
This system works until the elderly years, or during times of significant weight loss, when the fat tissue begins to dissipate.
Heavy metals stored in the fat depot are then released back into the bloodstream and will bind to other tissues, including the brain. This leads to conditions such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and dementia.
The best way to avoid becoming ill with these illnesses is to detoxify before an illness strikes.
A holistic health care practitioner who is knowledgeable about heavy metal toxicities can order the appropriate testing. A hair test should come first.
But because heavy metals are stored in fat deposits, blood tests and urine tests are often worthless if they are performed without a provoking agent — a substance that, after ingestion or intravenous push, binds heavy metals and allows the body to excrete them, usually through the urine.
Two provoking agents commonly used to determine heavy metal exposure are called DMPS and DMSA. DMPS has a higher affinity for mercury and DMSA has a higher affinity for lead.
To conduct the test, a patient will first empty his or her bladder. A sample of the pre-testing urine is sent to the lab for heavy metal analysis. Then either DMSA or DMPS is administered and urine is collected for the next 6 to 24 hours. This urine is also sent for evaluation of heavy metals.
Simply subtracting the pre-challenge heavy metal numbers from the post challenge numbers can provide the information you need on your heavy metal load.
The treatment for heavy metals varies, depending on the level of toxicity and which metals are involved. In addition to eating a healthy diet and maintaining hydration, you should take vitamin C, ingest unrefined salt, and optimize iodine levels.
Both DMPS and DMSA can be prescribed to help the body remove heavy metals. Other substances that help include chlorella, sulfur in the form of alpha lipoic acid, and milk thistle.
Heavy metal toxicity is very common. The good news is that a holistic treatment program can be implemented to aid its removal.
Remember, it is important to perform a heavy metal detox before you become ill and when you are young — because by the time dementia sets in, it may be too late.
Posts by David Brownstein, M.D.
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