Learn About Trace Mineral Hair Analysis
Many of us take mineral supplements and we really don’t even know why or if we even need them. Blood tests can show us what is circulating in our blood, but the truth is that is the least reliable indicator of our mineral reserves and our body’s ability to function fully. So how do we know what we need? The minerals in human tissue play a vital role in every body function. Imbalances in the synergistic relationships between various minerals can cause everything from insomnia to thyroid dysfunction. Before you begin taking extra mineral supplements or colloidal minerals, you need a baseline, a starting point. How do you know what you need if you don’t know what is missing?
Now you may not think of hair as a way to see the mineral levels in your body, but the truth is that hair is an amazing indicator because essentially soft tissue that has been formed from clusters of connective tissue matrix cells that make up the follicles. During the growth phase, the hair is exposed to the internal metabolic environment such as the circulating blood, lymph and extracellular fluids. As the hair continues to grow and reaches the surface of the skin, its outer layers harden, locking in the metabolic products accumulated during this period of hair formation. This biological process provides us with a blueprint and lasting record of nutritional metabolic activity that has occurred during this time.
One of the best things about this blueprint is that it also records hormone activity. It does this by evaluating the mineral pattern, which tells us how well hormonal messages have been received by the cells. Hormonal abnormalities will show up in the mineral pattern of soft tissues long before hormone levels deviate in the blood. So this is an "early stage" detection test.
According to Senate Document No. 264, 99% of American people are deficient in minerals, and a marked deficiency in any one of the more important minerals actually results in disease. All nutrients such as vitamins, proteins, enzymes, amino acids, carbohydrates, fats, sugars, etc., require minerals for activity. All bodily processes depend upon the action of minerals.
Trace minerals are actually more important in nutrition than vitamins. Vitamins can be synthesized by living matter, minerals cannot. Vitamins cannot function unless minerals are present, since minerals are the catalysts that make enzyme function possible. Minerals combine with enzymes into an alkaline detoxifying agent which neutralizes the acid metabolic by-products of the cells and other toxic conditions within the body and prepares them for elimination.
Hormonal secretion of the glands are also dependent upon mineral stimulation. A deficiency of just one mineral may disrupt the entire chain of glands, rendering other nutrients either useless or inefficient. Some of the glands most affected are thyroid, adrenals, pituitary and thymus. Without the proper functioning of these key glands, many daily activities of immunity, growth, energy levels and sleep patterns may be disturbed.
So why the hair? Hair is used as one of the tissues of choice by the Environmental Protection Agency in determining toxic metal exposure. A 1980 report from the E.P.A. stated that human hair can be effectively used for biological monitoring of the highest priority toxic metals. This report confirmed the findings of other studies in the U.S. and abroad, which concluded that human hair may be a more appropriate tissue than blood or urine for studying community exposure to some trace elements. Using highly sophisticated detection equipment, Trace Mineral Hair Analysis tests three small samples of scalp hair closest to the skin and provide a lab-certified report of the 40 major minerals of the body, the body’s metabolic type, any heavy metal accumulation and give dietary recommendations.
The heavy metal information is especially important because many symptoms and disorders are created or exacerbated by heavy metals such as lead, mercury, cadmium and aluminum. Metals can remain in soft tissue for many years even after the exposure has ceased. Mercury for instance gets into the hair follicle via the blood stream, then binds to the keratin protein. Methyl-Mercury becomes up to 250 times more concentrated than in the blood where it came from.
After acute exposure to Mercury, such as placement of a dental amalgam filling, most Mercury disappears from the blood within three weeks and none is present in three months. After three months, most of the Mercury that has left the filling is oxidized and now firmly bound to proteins and proteoglycans [enzymes in the connective tissue] or as metallic Mercury stored in fatty tissue. None of it is in the blood, even though the brain may be suffering the damage from Mercury toxicity.
By having Trace Mineral Hair Analysis testing done on a regular basis, you can see which minerals are needed, which heavy metals need to be eliminated and how to maximize your body’s efficient metabolism. Make the minerals that you take count!