If you haven't read our two most recent articles all about how metals and minerals have an intimate relationship, as well as the dangers of chelation therapy, take a few seconds to check them out here:
An Introduction to Ionic Mimicry
The Dangers of Chelation Therapy
So now that you've come up to speed, let's break down a small summary before we get into just how you are supposed to detox metals from your body in the RIGHT and SAFE way.
As we know, metals hold no nutritional significance to our bodies. Typically we can handle small doses here and there because of the very fact that metals exist in our environment. However, in the midst of coexisting with these metals, we must also maintain our own mineral status so they don't over power our systems.
What do I mean by this?
Well, as mentioned in our article An Introduction to Ionic Mimicry, "Ionic mimicry is similar to something called ionomics when the body's essential minerals are not present or not at sufficient levels, and instead chooses to use other nutrients (like metals) in enzymatic processes and proteins. The reason for this happening is not always because an individual is overly exposed in an environment with metals, but rather the body is constantly trying to survive and continue to function, even if resources are not the best. So, it'll allow metals that are similar in molecular weight or functioning characteristics to substitute temporarily."
This is why it is so important to always be so mindful of our mineral status so we can prevent heavy metal accumulation. That being said, we're also not perfect, and the world that we live in today is saturated with with metals which can be found in our water, air, makeup, food, even clothing. It's almost unavoidable, and so with the obvious concern of heavy metal accumulation in the body, chelation therapy came to the fore front as the recommended method to detox. Unfortunately, it is actually more dangerous to chelate metals than not, and you can read all about it here, which is why we decided to share what would be the steps to actually detoxing metals in a more safe manner!
1.Figure out your base line
Before ever supplementing or detoxing, you must figure out where your minerals are at, what is the oxidation rate your body is in (as in your metabolic type), ratios of specific minerals, as well as which metals you're even intoxicated in! You can do this by simply ordering a hair test from us here and then booking a consult with one of our trusted consultants to help you understand the interpretation of the test.
2. Balance your core minerals first
I know a lot of people like to jump in head first when they see their hair test results and are eager to balance everything all at once. The thing is, is that rebalancing minerals is not as simple as that. A rule of thumb to remember is that our 4 core minerals (calcium, magnesium sodium, potassium) are the foundational minerals which directly influence our second and third level minerals. By focusing on the first 4 first, you'll be targeting major systems such as the adrenal glands, the thyroid, blood sugar and vitality of the body which directly influence digestion, hormones, and immunity.
3. Focus on digestion
Depending on one's metabolic type, optimizing how the body is digesting food and absorbing nutrients is necessary for rebalancing minerals. For the majority of cases, most people will be recommended to focus on a higher carb, moderate protein and lower fat diet because close to 80% of individuals in the world is what we consider "Slow oxidizers". "Fast oxidizers" on the other hand fare better on a higher fat, higher protein and lower carb date for it slows the metabolism a bit- which is necessary when the body is catabolic. In other instances, one may need some further supplementation to help with the breaking down of food such as using a pancreatin supplement or even hydrochloric acid to substitute for a lack of stomach acidity.
4. Focus on drainage pathways aka emunctory organs
Opening up one's drainage pathways is the only way to assure that metals, as well as other toxicants like glyphosate, pharmaceuticals, endocrine disruptors, etc., don't further exacerbate one's condition. Little note here that detoxification is the process that our bodies do to convert toxins into less toxic compounds so we can remove them from the body. Drainage is the action in which we remove and secrete toxic material out of us. The main drainage pathways we have are our liver, kidneys, lungs, lymph/skin, brain/sleep, colon and for women they also have the uterus. These are all energy dependent processes, thus the first three steps are vital to supporting this one.
5. Avoiding exposure
Not everyone can avoid exposure depending on where they live, their environment, and so many other factors, but always instilling effort in trying your best is all that matters. Simple steps one can take today to trying to avoid metals include filtering one's water through reverse osmosis, filtering one's air in their home, buying organic and grass fed products, reaching for more clean beauty products, opting for less canned foods, being mindful of how much seafood is consumed, and consciously asking for certificate of analysis when purchasing supplements of any kind.
6. Reducing stress through lifetysle
This may sound a bit redundant, especially when you hear "reduce your stress", but we really do mean to reduce your stress. In this fast paced world we are now living in, the demand on our nervous system can contribute to further and unnecessary stress on the body, especially if one is already struggling. Small things like going to bed between 10pm-11pm, blocking out blue light before bed time by using blue light blocking glasses, learning to incorporate breathwork when you feel anxious, making sure you have an outlet to let out frustration, grounding outside to connect to the earth's ions and going out in nature sends signals to our nervous system that it can calm down.
7. Enhance detoxification through coffee enemas and sauna therapy
Yes, mineral balancing is probably the most key step in this entire process of detoxing metals so they can replace them in tissues, but further supporting 3 of the main drainage pathways (liver, colon, lymph) can further help with the removal of metals. Coffee enemas in particular help clean the colon and stimulate the liver through the caffeine. Coffee contains numerous trace minerals and substances such as palmitic acid that help with detoxification. Sauna therapy on the other hand helps with sweating out toxins which is a lot more gentler than a detox, and in fact quite effective. Most metals are water soluble and are best excreted out of urine or sweat and when the body favors sweating as means of detoxification, it can take off a bit of the burden from our liver and kidneys that do such a massive job already.
8. No to drugs and alcohol
Lastly, no experimental drugs or alcohol, for these products can further congest one's emunctory organs and detoxification process, as well as contain more toxicants and metals themselves.
We typically recommend doing this for an average of 3-4 months to see any difference, and then re testing one's levels to check on progress.
Hope this was helpful!
Hair Tissue Mineral Analysis Practitioner
Functional Diagnostic Nutrition Practitioner
Integrative Health Coach