Avoiding heavy metal exposure is next to impossible in today’s technologically advanced world. We are exposed all the time to heavy metals in the form of air, water, food, products or through other consumer items. Ingestion of heavy metals like aluminum, mercury, lead, arsenic, cadmium are very toxic, whether you experience acute or chronic exposure.
Heavy Metal Exposure: Acute exposure to heavy metals happen when your exposure level shoots up all of a sudden and you become a victim of a disastrous event. Large scale factory accidents that result in release of chemical gases, toxins, heavy metallic substances into the air etc. belong to this category. Another exposure, the chronic kind, happens on a daily basis. You maybe exposed to heavy metals daily, in the form of foods, utilities, dental fillings, air, dust, smoke and a lot of things unwittingly. Though acute metal exposure is easy to identify and diagnose, chronic metal exposure is not that way.
With chronic exposure, you are able to sense the imbalances only when some crucial system fails drastically. Even vaccines, pesticides and insecticides can form toxins in the body. Absorption of toxins happens through food, water, air and even through skin. Light exposure (on a day to day basis) to tap water, “silver” dental fillings, vaccines, fertilizers, insecticides can increase the toxin content/deposit in your body over a particular period of time. Excess toxin in the body binds in the soft tissues, causing blockades in the blood stream. Often, this can be the cause behind atherosclerosis and arteriosclerosis.
How to protect yourself from heavy metal toxicity: Many think that heavy metal toxicity is not that serious. It is not so. If you become a victim of metal toxicity, you have to be careful with the food, water and air you intake.
1. Avoid heavy metal usage/exposure: Get to know about heavy metal sources and the specific ways in which heavy metals can affect you. Avoid using/exposing yourself to them. If possible, avoid exposure to other chemical toxins or agents that can create blockades in your blood stream. If you are working a chemical/heavy metal environment, ensure you have the protective gear to prevent any kind of exposure.
2. Look for symptoms: If heavy metal exposure is unavoidable, you should go ahead with the next step – identification of symptoms and treatment of them. Look for symptoms of heavy metal toxicity. These include mental confusion, muscle pain, aches, headaches, memory loss, gastrointestinal upsets, food allergies, intolerances, vision problems, fatigue, heart ailments, and other chronic disorders. Since the symptoms are vague, you may not be able to diagnose if they are a result of heavy metal exposure. In which case, you can consult a doctor and screen your entire body for heavy metal toxicity.
3. Screening: Next step is to subject yourself to screening for heavy metal toxicity. The easiest screening process is a hair analysis followed by urine tests after intake of chelating drugs. If a 24-hour urine collection test indicates that you have excess metal content, then, it is better to go for a complete analysis and find out the heavy metal that is causing ailments in you.
4. Treatment: Once you have identified that heavy metal toxicity is the reason behind your ailments, it is better to go ahead with chelation therapy. You need to choose the chelating agent upon discussion with your physician. Most of the time, treatment will involve intravenous EDTA chelation, accompanied by intravenous Vitamin C and mineral infusions.