Vary widely depending on the type of metal and level of toxicity one is exposed to, but common symptoms can include skin rash, headaches, dizziness, immune disorders, joint pain, liver disease, nervous system disorders, loss of memory, and dementia.
If a person experiences extreme confusion, seizures, and disorientation due to heavy metal poisoning, they must be treated in a hospital as a medical emergency. Drugs that serve as chelating agents can be used to help the body rid itself of metal poisoning.
What is Heavy Metal Poisoning?
Exposure to lead, cadmium, mercury, aluminum, copper, and less common metals can cause serious disease and can be fatal. Industrial toxicology scientists have established threshold limits that indicate dangerous exposure, depending on the metal in question, but there is widespread controversy over whether any degree of exposure can be considered safe and tolerable. In fact, no one knows if even the smallest exposure to any toxic metal is safe, particularly among people considered sensitive to a particular metal.
Threshold limits are intended to protect the majority of workers from clinical disease. However, many people argue that low-level exposure is triggering subclinical changes in human health that may not manifest as disease until many years after the initial exposure. Concerns have been increasing steadily as people begin to suffer symptoms related to long-term exposure from air, water, and soil pollution. Such pollution arises from cigarettes, auto exhaust, lead cans, aluminum cookware, food additives, pesticides, fertilizers, fungicides, water piping, cosmetics, hair dyes, antacids, and deodorants.
Getting rid of toxins from one’s system requires, first, that the toxins be eliminated from one’s environment. From there, the toxin should be cleansed from the body gently and gradually, beginning with a diet that is rich in nutrients and low in fat. All fasts should be supervised by a physician or health care professional who is knowledgeable about the effects of fasting and who knows how to respond to the physical side effects of fasts. Toxins are stored in the fat cells within tissues. When a person fasts, he quickly draws on fat reserves as a source of stored calories, which means toxins held in fat cells are released into the bloodstream and can overwhelm the liver, kidneys, and spleen and affect the nervous system, thus causing more damaged than they did in the stores. Rather than doing any sort of severe fast, eat a diet low in fat and high in nutrition and fiber. Such a diet will cause fat reserves to burn gradually, allowing toxins to be released into the system at a rate that is more compatible with the blood-cleansing organs. The high-nutrient diet will also boost immune response and protect against the possible side effects of such toxins. The diet must also be high in fiber to maintain healthy bowel elimination, which is the primary method the body rids itself of heavy metals. If constipation develops while attempting to eliminate toxins, use enemas to encourage elimination. Finally, eat sea vegetables daily. Sea vegetables contain sodium alginate, which has been shown at McGill University and other research centers to bind heavy metals and leach them from the system. Once bound to sodium alginate, the metal is eliminated from the body by the large intestine.
Foods to Eat
If poisoning is suspected:
- A diet low in fat and cholesterol
- Whole grains provide nutrition, energy, and fiber
- Seaweeds (daily)
- Green vegetables, such as collards, Chinese cabbage, kale, mustard greens, watercress, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and other rich sources of nutrients
- Root vegetables, including carrots, onions, rutabagas, parsnips, and turnips
- Hot water and lemon juice promotes liver cleansing
- Grapefruit and other sour citrus fruits promote liver cleansing
- Apples contain pectin, which removed toxic metals
- Carrot juice promotes liver function
- Fresh-water fish from unpolluted waters
- Cooked beans
- Raw vegetables
- Spring water
Foods to Avoid
- Dairy products
- Canned food
- Frozen foods
- Shellfish (if caught near industrial towns)
- Poor-quality water
- Vitamin C: 200 – 500 mg per day
- Vitamin E: 100 – 400 IU per day
- Vitamin B complex
Thiamine: 1.5 mg per day
Riboflavin: 1.8 mg per day
Vitamin B6: 2 – 10 mg per day
Vitamin B12: 2 – 10 mg per day
Niacin: 20 mg per day
- Zinc: 15 mg per day
- Magnesium orotate: 300 mg per day
- Potassium iodide: 1000 mcg per day 1 to 2 months
- Selenium: 70 – 100 mcg per day
Do not over train. It is immune-depressing and can promote over-elimination of toxins from fat cells, overwhelming blood-cleansing organs, just as fasts do.
- Mild aerobic exercise daily, such as walking, jogging, bicycle riding, or some athletic sport, such as tennis
- Stretching exercises and yoga are ideal for promoting qi throughout the system and supporting blood-cleansing organs, as well as eliminating waste from tissues