What Are The Heavy Metals?

September 13, 2011

Pipes can be a source of heavy metals in drinking water.

Arsenic, mercury, and lead are the most common heavy metals found in humans, and over the course of a life time exposure can add up!

What Are The Heavy Metals Toxicity Symptoms?

When exposed to a large amount of heavy metals at once (usually in a working environment), severe symptoms can occur, including mental impairment.

But most people aren’t exposed to heavy metals all at once. Instead, there’s a slow buildup in the body over time. Heavy metals accumulate in soft tissue (organs like the brain, kidneys…) and as build up increases cause more severe symptoms, that are less noticeable due to the gradual effect.

Brain fog, which can include memory impairment, poor motor skills, and slow response time is the most generalized symptom, but other organs, especially those responsible for detox, like the kidneys, can be affected too.

Immunosuppression and autoimmune like symptoms are also associated with certain heavy metal toxicity.

What Are Sources Of The Heavy Metals?

1940, 70 years ago, is tooted as the time that we stopped using lead around the home. Of course, that really means stopped introducing lead into the home. Many older homes still contain sources of lead, including paint and plumbing (hence the adage about using cold water for food—it doesn’t sit in the pipes as long and absorb as much heavy metal). And it’s only been recently that we’ve looked at other toxins in the home, and non-toxic paint has become widely available.

Of course, there are still plenty of sources to be worried about. Arsenic and other toxic metals are released through manufacturing process, as well as from pesticides, herbicides, etc. into the environment.

Plastic can also be a source for heavy metals and other toxins; to be on the safe side, don’t eat food in unlabelled plastic or that wasn’t packaged in America, this also includes baby and dog toys, and anything you would use for food/water (plastic cups, bowls, etc.).

Sea food, soil, and even tap water can be a source of heavy metals. Even if that source is small, it builds up over time. (Remember that 1990s PSA where the pregnant woman drinks tap water over and over, with the announcer repeating “a little bit of lead never hurt anybody”?).

What Are The Heavy Metals Removed By?

For severe heavy metal poisoning, go the emergency room.

Generally though, people who lead otherwise healthy lifestyles and aren’t at risk for severe workplace exposure may want to either do an occasional cleanse, or routine maintanence to remove heavy metal build up.

Zeolite is commonly used to remove heavy metals, not just in humans but in water (water softeners, as well as some detergents), and in fish tanks. It’s important to remember that there’s over 200 kinds of zeolite, and not all of them are right for human consumption.

Clinoptilolite is a safe form of zeolite with a small enough structure that it won’t remove larger particles like calcium.

What are other source of heavy metals and toxins people should be aware of? Contribute in the comments!

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