Do I Have Heavy Metal Toxicity? (And What To Do About It)

It seems like many of us suffer from mystery symptoms that just won’t clear up no matter what we do—shoulder pain, back pain, skin issues, stomach pain, immune system weakness, fatigue, etc., etc. Does this mean you have heavy metal toxicity?

Heavy Metals May Be The Missing Link

Heavy metals can cause body pain, a weakened immune system, fatigue, mental fogginess, and many other issues. They compromise your organs and cells and generally “junk up” your biochemistry. Recovering from any issue will be more difficult if heavy metals are present.

About 15 years ago, when we were just learning about the potential dangers of silver amalgam fillings, Dr. Sheehan and I had ours removed. Neither dentist took the proper precautions (we just didn’t know better at the time) and we have both suffered some negative effects from the mercury exposure.

Dr. Sheehan specifically suffered from lower back pain that just would not resolve. For several years we were searching for help for his chronic back pain. We even almost traded in our car because we thought the seat was the cause. He could not sit up straight in the car. Every time we drove, he had to put the seat down into a reclining position and lie face down. Yes, I know it sounds extreme, and it was! He also developed severe bacne.

Only after we learned how to perform a proper heavy metal detox did the low back pain resolve (and so did the bacne).

Later we learned that a severe gut infection can increase mercury uptake. Dr. Sheehan had salmonellosis 30 years ago (a severe gut infection). This explains why his symptoms were so severe, whereas mine were comparatively mild.

If you have been following Dr. Sheehan’s work, you know we use a combination of functional blood chemistry and Nutrition Response Testing to determine the root causes of your health challenges.

What To Do About Heavy Metal Toxicity

The problem with heavy metal toxins is that they “hideout” in different parts of your body. For example, lead can be taken up and stored in your bones and mercury has an affinity for the brain and nerves. In some cases, a lifetime of exposure to certain metals can certainly be challenging when trying to clean up the mess and get you feeling better. In addition, it is often not easy to find heavy metals on a blood test.

This is why, when we find a heavy metal toxin with Nutrition Response Testing, we have begun following up with a hair mineral analysis and in many cases, a urine test called a “Toxic Elements Challenge.” Essentially, the hair mineral analysis is useful for determining some levels of healthy and toxic minerals (and metals), and the urine challenge will often show what your body is NOT excreting effectively (i.e. which metals are “stuck).

This way we get an additional source of data to help manage the heavy metal detox – a process that often can take months to years. Therapeutically, we use what is best suited to your individual biochemistry, whether it be healthy mineral repletion, chelation, enhancing excretion via the gut, antioxidant support, or different combinations of these at different times.

We all have some degree of heavy metal toxicity…in fact, humans have been suffering from heavy metals for thousands of years (even the Ancient Romans!). They are the missing link in many chronic, unresolved health problems.

If you suspect heavy metals may be causing some of your health challenges, take the following steps:

  1. Identify any current exposures and reduce it. For example, getting a water filter can reduce lead exposure.
  2. Increase your intake of fresh veggies and fruits. The healthy plant chemicals and fiber have a gentle cleansing effect 😊
  3. Get tested for your levels using Nutrition Response Testing, hair mineral analysis, and/or urine toxic elements challenge.
  4. Get on an appropriate nutritional program to make sure you’re optimizing your nutrients and ridding yourself of the metals in a way that works for your individual biochemistry!

Sincerely yours,

Laura Sheehan, MS

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