The Effects of Heavy Metals in the Body

Tommy and LaDonna CecilUncategorized

Post # 1 : What are heavy metals?

 

triangle with bones

                                                                  First you have to ask yourself , “what are heavy metals?”

The term heavy metal refers to any metallic chemical element that has a relatively high density and is toxic or poisonous at low concentrations. Examples of heavy metals include mercury (Hg), cadmium (Cd), arsenic (As), chromium (Cr), thallium (Tl), and lead (Pb).
Heavy metals are dangerous because they tend to bioaccumulate. Bioaccumulation means an increase in the concentration of a chemical in a biological organism over time, compared to the chemical’s concentration in the environment. Compounds accumulate in living things any time they are taken up and stored faster than they are broken down (metabolized) or excreted.

pic of heavy metals

 

What makes them so dangerous?

Heavy metals are dangerous because they tend to bioaccumulate. Bioaccumulation means an increase in the concentration of a chemical in a biological organism over time, compared to the chemical’s concentration in the environment. Compounds accumulate in living things any time they are taken up and stored faster than they are broken down (metabolized) or excreted.

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 system.

The worst part about 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.

This list of five common toxic metals will give you a heads up to avoiding further exposure to these health-degenerating elements.

Mercury

Dental Amalgam

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.

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.

Vaccines

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.

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. 

Fish

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. Due to mercury concerns, pregnant and breastfeeding women can transfer mercury to their newborns, causing significant neurological problems.

Lead

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.

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 kidney disease.

Aluminum

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 loss. 

Antiperspirant

Antiperspirants contain aluminum that is absorbed by your body.

Water

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. 

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

Arsenic

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. 

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.

Cadmium

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. 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. 

Recently, cadmium has also been identified in e-cigarettes and those that vape.

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