Pureheart 2015-12-08 16:04:51
Five Common Toxic Metals to Avoid, and Where You’ll Find Them
By Dr. Joseph Mercola with Rachael Droege
Are you feeling tired or irritable? Is your head foggy or are you
suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, depression or anemia? These
are just a few of the signs that you may be suffering from metal
poisoning–a toxic accumulation of heavy metals in the soft tissues of
Heavy metal poisoning is much more common than most people realize,
and if you’re thinking that it doesn’t apply to you
because you haven’t been exposed to any, think again. If
you’ve eaten fish regularly, had amalgam fillings, received
vaccinations, drank contaminated water, or done industrial or
agricultural work or pharmaceutical manufacturing, there’s a
good chance that you have a fair amount of toxic metals in your
The effects of these toxic metals can range from subtle symptoms to
serious diseases. Since metals build up in your body over time,
symptoms are often attributed to other causes and people often
don’t realize that they have been affected by metals until
it’s too late.
The worst part about heavy metals is that once they build up in your
body they can cause irreversible damage. Further damage can be
prevented by removing the metals, but this can be a slow, difficult
process. Prevention is the best defense when it comes to metal
poisoning, and this list of five common toxic metals will give you a
heads up to avoiding further exposure to these health-degenerating
Mercury is one of the most problematic of all toxic metals because,
despite its dangers and known role as a neurotoxin, many people have
it implanted in their mouth, injected into their bloodstream, or are
consuming it daily in fish.
If you are one of the millions of Americans who has received silver
dental fillings, take heed: Mercury makes up about
50 percent of every amalgam dental filling, also known as
“silver” fillings. According to the American Dental
Association, “Dental amalgam (silver filling) is considered a
safe, affordable and durable material that has been used to restore
the teeth of more than 100 million Americans. It contains a mixture of
metals such as silver, copper and tin, in addition to mercury, which
chemically binds these components into a hard, stable and safe
substance. Dental amalgam has been studied and reviewed extensively,
and has established a record of safety and effectiveness.”
However, consider that while 78 percent of Americans have dental
fillings, 95 percent of people with disorders of the central nervous
system such as MS, epilepsy, paralysis and migraines also have silver
dental fillings. This begs the question, would you want mercury, one
of the most powerful neurotoxins on the planet, embedded in your
mouth, only inches from your brain? The answer is obvious.
Vapors from amalgams are released continually, and studies have found
that those with these fillings can have mercury vapor concentration 10
times higher than people without them. Simple activities such as
chewing gum, drinking hot liquids and brushing teeth can increase the
release of mercury even more.
If you decide to have your amalgams replaced with a non-toxic
material, the most important thing is to find a dentist who can remove
your amalgams safely. Any dentist can technically replace your
amalgams, but if they don’t employ proper precautions much of the
mercury in your fillings will go straight to your brain. Secondly, I
would highly recommend getting healthy BEFORE you start on your
fillings. Even a good dentist will likely liberate some mercury in the
removal process and you want your detoxification mechanisms optimized
prior to removal.
Thimerosal, a mercury-containing vaccine preservative, is still widely
used in vaccines, including those routinely administered to children.
Thimerosal contains close to 50 percent ethyl mercury by weight.
Children are particularly sensitive to the mercury as their nervous
systems are still rapidly developing. Years ago, health-related
organizations such as the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommended that
thimerosal be removed from vaccines as soon as possible, yet
it’s still present in many vaccinations including Hepatitis B,
diphtheria, pertussis, acellular pertussis, tetanus and Hib.
Over the past decade, the prevalence of autism and other
neurodevelopmental disorders such as attention deficit disorder have
been increasing at epidemic proportions, and many experts believe that
mercury from vaccines is at least partly to blame. It is thought that
a child’s reduced ability to excrete the
mercury–children’s detoxification abilities may vary
greatly–may also play a role.
It is possible to get childhood vaccines without thimerosal, since
some manufacturers have developed thimerosal-free vaccines, however,
you will have to ask your doctor to check the package insert and
supposed to detail exactly what is in a vaccine, may not even be
accurate. You will also want to read the many other reasons why
vaccines can do more harm than good.
Tragically, our oceans are largely contaminated with industrial
pollutants like mercury. Ocean and farm-raised fish pick up these
toxic chemical residues, which bioconcentrate in their flesh.
The larger the fish, the more problematic because big fish eat smaller
fish, thereby getting an even greater dose of accumulated toxins.
People who regularly eat fish have higher levels of methylmercury than
those who don’t.
Even the conservative Environmental Protection Agency and Food and
Drug Administration have issued warnings about the dangers of mercury
in fish, and they are now planning to issue a federal warning to
pregnant and nursing women, and even those thinking of getting
pregnant to limit their consumption of tuna, along with their previous
warnings about other types of fish, due to mercury concerns. Pregnant
and breastfeeding women can transfer mercury to their newborns,
causing significant neurological problems.
Even if you are a man or not planning to become pregnant, mercury from
fish can still accumulate in your body and cause serious problems down
the road. If you do eat fish, please be sure to have it lab tested for
mercury. We have found a brand of salmon, Vital Choice, that has
tested free of mercury time and time again, so this is one option for
those of you looking for a safe source of fish. Alternatively, most
sardines have little to no mercury since they are so small, and you
can also take a high-quality, purified fish oil or cod liver oil to
safely receive the health benefits of fish without the mercury.
If you are concerned about mercury poisoning, please review my Mercury
Detoxification Protocol for detox information.
There are many ways that humans can be exposed to lead. Among the
major sources are lead-based paint, leaded gasoline, lead-contaminated
water, manufacturing of lead batteries, rubber products, glass and
other lead-containing products, and lead oxide fumes that result when
demolishing industrial buildings. While some of these sources, such as
lead-based paint and leaded gasoline, have been discontinued over the
past few decades, their effects still show up in the environment. For
instance, it is estimated that 64 million homes in the United States
still contain lead paint, which can either be ingested in flakes or
inhaled as a microscopic dust.
According to the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey
(NHANES), the prevalence of lead toxicity (levels greater than 10
mcg/dL) in U.S. children ranged from 1.5 percent for upper-income
white children living in recently built houses in the suburbs, to 36.7
percent for black children residing in large cities. Children are more
susceptible to lead absorption than adults, whose lead toxicity is
generally related to occupational exposure. It’s estimated that
800,000 U.S. workers are exposed to lead through their work.
However, low-level exposure to lead, such as through drinking water or
living near an incinerator or toxic dump, is also associated with many
negative health effects like brain dysfunction in children,
neurobehavioral changes in adults (such as a reduction in cognitive
abilities and IQ, and personality changes), hypertension and chronic
As with the other elements, aluminum is absorbed and accumulated in
the body, and has been linked to serious illnesses including
osteoporosis, extreme nervousness, anemia, headache, decreased liver
and kidney function, forgetfulness, speech disturbances and memory
Aluminum has also been widely associated with Alzheimer’s
disease. People who have died from Alzheimer’s disease have been
found to have up to four times the average amount of aluminum
accumulated in the brain’s nerve cells.
Antiperspirants contain aluminum that is absorbed by your body.
It’s best to avoid it all together and use simple soap and water
instead. Deodorants aren’t as bad as antiperspirants, but I would also
avoid using them unless it was made from some form of baking soda.
Aluminum-contaminated water is another significant concern, as studies
have found that Alzheimer’s disease is more common in regions
where levels of aluminum in drinking water are highest.
To find out whether you may be at risk from aluminum and other toxins
in your water you’ll need to have your water tested by a
reliable source. I’ve worked with AquaMD, a top-notch
water-testing agency, to create the “Mercola’s Recommended
Water Tests”–and to make them affordable compared to other
sources–so you can ensure the safety of your tap water today.
Other Common Sources
Aluminum cookware: Although aluminum pots are probably less
problematic than the sources mentioned above, I personally would not
use aluminum cookware. Aluminum foil Over-the-counter drugs: These
include many antacids, anti-diarrheal drugs and drugs used for pain
and inflammation. Several douche brands Some baking powders: Most
baking powders contain aluminum as an additive, but health food stores
carry non-aluminum varieties. Refined foods, refined flours, baked
goods, processed cheeses, and common table salt
Organic arsenic compounds are mainly used as pesticides, primarily on
cotton plants, while inorganic arsenic is primarily used to preserve
wood. Once arsenic is released in the environment it cannot be
destroyed, and many arsenic compounds dissolve in water.
The primary route of exposure to high levels of arsenic is typically
through occupational hazards, or near hazardous waste sites or areas
with high natural levels. You can also be exposed by breathing sawdust
or burning smoke from arsenic-treated wood. Arsenic has also shown up
in drinking water, especially among well water, and long-term exposure
to arsenic in drinking water has been linked to cancer of the bladder,
lungs, skin, kidney, nasal passages, liver and prostate.
Exposure to low levels of arsenic can cause nausea and vomiting,
decreased production of red and white blood cells, abnormal heart
rhythm, damage to blood vessels, and a sensation of “pins and needles”
in hands and feet, and over the long term can cause darkening of the
skin and the appearance of small “corns” or “warts” on the palms,
soles, and torso.
In January 2001, the EPA revised the standard allowable level of
arsenic in drinking water from 50 parts per billion
(ppb) to 10 ppb. Levels must reach this lower amount by 2006. However,
some experts believe that an even tougher standard of 3 parts per
billion should have been adopted.
It’s a good idea to have your water tested for arsenic,
especially if your water comes from a well, to ensure you are not
being slowly poisoned.
Cadmium, a naturally occurring metal, can be found in food, water and
cigarette smoke. It is a known human carcinogen that appears to act in
two ways: it harms DNA directly and disturbs a DNA repair system that
helps to prevent cancer.
Like other metals, cadmium stays in the body for a long time and
accumulates after long-term exposure to even low levels. Cadmium is
released into the air from mining, industry, burning coal and
household wastes, where it then binds to soil particles and dissolves
in water. Fish, plants, and animals accumulate cadmium from the
environment, as such there are low levels of the metal in most all
foods with the highest levels found in shellfish, liver, and kidney
People are exposed to cadmium not only through foods but also through
drinking contaminated water and breathing cadmium-contaminated air
(such as near burning waste, battery manufacturing, metal soldering or
welding). Cadmium is also present in cigarette smoke, and smoking
doubles the average daily intake.
It is thought that cadmium is carcinogenic, and long-term exposure to
low levels can contribute to kidney disease, lung damage and fragile
bones. Animal studies also suggest that it may lead to liver disease,
high blood pressure, and nerve or brain damage.
Spirulina for Arsenic Poisoning
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