Get the Lead and Mercury Out: Detox Heavy Metals with Minerals and MoreHelke Ferrie June 22, 2021
Sauna therapy helps the body to eliminate heavy metals through the skin; it should be accompanied by supplementation of vitamins and minerals to offset those lost in sweat
In the mid-1990s, I embarked upon a personal road to recovery after suffering from a near-fatal neurological disorder. Caused by pesticide poisoning from 20 years of exposure to DDT in India, as well as mercury poisoning from dental amalgams, my case of toxic overload was not especially unique. In fact, poisoning by environmental and dietary toxins are pervasive in the medical literature throughout the history of humankind:
- Many ancient Romans unknowingly died of lead poisoning from the pipes used in their plumbing and the pots used in cooking. It is even theorized that low-level lead poisoning may have caused the insanity of some emperors.
- Napoleon Bonaparte was likely to have died from prolonged exposure to the arsenic contained in toxic fumes given off by wallpaper at Longwood House, his prison home on the island of Saint Helena in 1821.
- American sailors became ill during the Second World War from lead poisoning. As a result, lead was removed from ships’ paint (and later from all paints), and it was navy doctors who first developed chelation therapy.
- In the 1950s, hundreds of deformed babies were born to mothers in Japan’s Minamata Bay area. The deformities were found to have been caused by parental consumption of fish from area lakes contaminated by industrial mercury, a heavy metal which inhibits fetal development during formation of the brain and neurological system.
- Close to 6,500 people died or became ill in Iraq in 1972 after ingesting bread made with wheat that had been treated with a methylmercury-based fungicide.
These are the types of tragic events which resulted in the refinement of tests over time to detect toxicity levels of all heavy metals and other toxic substances such as PVCs and solvents. As well, the enormous increase in the use of heavy metal-laced pesticides, along with industry’s growing reliance on mercury, lead, barium, arsenic, and platinum further strengthened the need for such diagnostic methods as well as treatments.
The Toxic Origins of Disease
The science of medical toxicology is now growing as fast as the production of toxins. When the Human Genome Project was completed in 2003, the first major benefit was not (as hoped for by investors) the identification of specific diseases located on specific genes. Instead, on April 16, 2003, the U.S. National Institutes of Health held a press conference to announce that their research had identified some 200 genes found to be vulnerable to environmental toxins linked to cardiovascular disease and cancer. Many of these genes are regulatory, continuously affecting thousands of other genes simultaneously. So attempting to genetically manipulate even one of them, in the hope of conferring resistance against our pervasive environmental contamination, is now thought to be impossible.
So the Human Genome Project had unwittingly re-affirmed key tenets of environmental medicine, which are:
– To stay healthy, humans must avoid toxins in air, food, soil, and water;
– Preventive or therapeutic detoxification is necessary for ongoing restoration of health;
– Humans need nutrition that is uncontaminated by processing, genetic manipulation, and synthetic chemicals.
None of this can be patented. Instead, the world must be cleaned up if we wish to survive as a species. Lead has already been removed from all paint products and so has mercury from pressure-treated wood.
Medical research has made great gains in detecting toxins and developing detoxification techniques, yet few doctors are trained to recognize the toxic origin of most diseases because medical school curricula and clinical practice guidelines are mostly focused on symptom-controlling drugs. Fortunately, there are many naturopathic doctors who have always known better, as well as an increasing number of physicians who are becoming frustrated with ‘managing’ diseases instead of curing their patients.
Research has proven that the epidemic of chronic diseases threatening to bankrupt the wealthiest nations today are caused by environmental toxins of our own making. Finding ways to clean up the environment and protect ourselves from these disease-causing pollutants has become urgent.
Historically, corporate anonymity ensured that no responsibility would be taken for the cancers, asthma, obesity, and mental health disorders caused by environmental pollutants. However, this has changed. In June 2018, groundskeeper DeWayne Johnson became the first person to take Monsanto to court on “allegations it has spent decades hiding the cancer-causing dangers of its popular Roundup herbicide products,” according to The Guardian.
And in July 2018, Johnson & Johnson was ordered to pay $4.69 billion to 22 women and their families “who had claimed that asbestos in the company’s talcum powder products caused them to develop ovarian cancer,” according to The New York Times.
Sources of Toxicity:
Some of the heavy metals causing toxicity in our modern environment and their common sources include:
- lead (auto exhaust, root canals, makeup and cosmetics, building materials, water);
- mercury (dental fillings, vaccines, contact lens solution, seafood);
- cadmium (cigarettes, batteries, hydrogenated oils (i.e. margarine, corn oil, etc.), coffee);
- arsenic (conventional non-organic poultry and eggs);
- aluminum (deodorant, vaccines, cookware, some teas);
- thallium (added to gasoline);
- bismuth (makeup, medicines).
Symptoms of Toxicity:
While signs of acute toxicity are easier to spot (severe cramping, vertigo, vomiting, difficulty breathing, impaired motor and cognitive skills, etc.), more subtle signs that you need to detox heavy metals are:
- fatigue, headaches, acne
- poor digestion/bloating/gas
- compromised ability to digest fats
- female problems (hormones, infertility, preeclampsia)
- excess sweating; aching joints
- gaining weight just around the waist
- severe food cravings, mood swings
- middle-of-the-night insomnia
Hair Analysis Detects Toxic Metals
According to the World Health Organization, the gold standard for detecting toxicity in the body is hair analysis. Like no other diagnostic tool, hair analysis can reveal to what extent a person has become contaminated with toxins through air, water, and food. On March 19, 2005, a conference on hair, tissue, and mineral analysis was held in Toronto. Dr. George Tamari, MD of Anamol Laboratories, and Dr. Patricia Wales, ND of Alberta (a chelation expert), taught health professionals the most recent advances in the use of hair analysis tests. Information gained from hair is more comprehensive than from blood and urine which only inform about the body’s toxic load within the past few hours. (Blood and urine do not reveal what toxic metals are stored deep in the tissues where they systematically destroy the organs over time.)
Hair analysis can show deficiencies that will have future consequences before signs and symptoms of illness have begun: it is history, diagnosis, and guide to a highly specific therapy all in one. Hair can show months of toxic metal accumulation averaged out over time, as well as the depleted status of beneficial metals and minerals. Hair analysis reveals what is happening on the battlefield and who is losing. (Archaeological hair analysis has even helped detect the declining nutritional status of agrarian populations when agriculture began some 10,000 years ago with its reliance on mono-diets, the so-called ‘staples’, after millions of years on much more varied diets.)
Detoxification treatments fall into two groups: those that require a doctor and those that don’t. It takes a medical doctor or a naturopathic doctor to interpret a hair analysis, and legally only medical physicians can provide intravenous therapies. However, for people who are not desperately ill and for purposes of prevention, anybody can learn the basics and apply them. If your hair analysis shows the presence of toxic metals, they should be removed. The available protocols include the following, usually in combinations:
1. Take beneficial mineral supplements – that are antagonistic to the toxic ones, thus slowly removing them (e.g. magnesium chelates mercury, zinc detoxes lead, etc.). Since all toxic metals deplete essential and beneficial metals/minerals, increasing the intake and bio-availability of beneficial minerals helps to excrete the toxic ones.
2. Access the bloodstream with chelating drugs – To remove toxic metals intravenously requires the use of vitamins and beneficial minerals, like magnesium, to be infused simultaneously to ensure that heavy metals do not injure the kidneys and gastrointestinal tract during elimination. (Note: Chelation therapy for cardiovascular disease follows different protocols.)
3. Excrete heavy metals through the skin – This can be done with a far infrared sauna, epsom salt baths, and clay in baths or poultices. Other techniques include acupuncture to increase lymphatic drainage, and coffee enemas to bolster the eliminative function of the liver. Sauna therapy utilizes the body’s largest organ (the skin), which constantly excretes toxins through sweat, while also increasing the cell-division process (healing) and mobilizing lymphatic drainage (for internal cleansing). Sauna therapy should be accompanied by supplementation of vitamins and minerals to offset those lost in sweat, especially potassium.
Coffee enemas are central to the cancer treatments developed at The Gerson Institute and by the late Dr. Nicholas Gonzalez. Coffee administered rectally raises the liver’s production of glutathione by many hundreds of times and causes the excretion of heavy metals.
4. Dietary changes – Organic food is less acidic and more alkaline due to the absence of pesticides, and it promotes bio-availability of beneficial minerals.
5. Removal of all “silver” amalgams – This is a must in all cases, though timing varies individually. (Ed. note: See healthy dentistry professionals on pages 40, 41, 43 of Vitality magazine.)
6. Optimal intake of vitamin C – or intravenous treatment with it, is essential because vitamin C is itself a chelator. See my report on what mainstream medicine now knows about vitamin C in my Vitality article of December 2017.
7. Probably the most effective heavy metal removal therapy – comes from energetic medicine developed in Germany and available through some naturopaths and doctors in Canada. Known as bioresonance vibration therapy, it identifies the specific heavy metals in a person’s body and reverses their polarity so they can be eliminated through stool and urine.
Often, the abovementioned methods will be tailored to the specific patient, as Dr. Grace Ziem does at Johns Hopkins Center for Environmental Medicine. Dr. Dietrich Klinghardt in Seattle is one of the world’s leading experts in detoxification. He explains: “There are no true detoxification agents: all we have are mobilizing agents. The body has to do the excreting with the help of proper mobilizing agents.” Hence, the training provided in chelation therapies by the American College for Advancement in Medicine teaches how to use which method and how to titrate intravenous chelation over time and intensity, the deciding factor being individual patients’ tolerances and the extent of patients’ prior organ damage.
Environmental and dietary toxins can kill rapidly or slowly, through one-time powerful doses, or through low-level exposures over long periods of time. The mode of action is systematic blockage of essential nutrients and interference with the function of the organs that naturally handle detoxification (liver, kidneys, bowels, skin).
Different metals affect different organs as prime targets:
- mercury attacks first the kidneys and then the brain and spinal cord;
- lead attacks the brain;
- aluminum invades the brain;
- and all metals affect the liver, which then causes the shutting down of the liver’s detoxing work.
Detoxification combined with nutrient replenishment are the two inseparable activities of intervention and preventive medicine. Fortunately, we now know how to treat and prevent the effects of almost all the poisons which humanity has created (except for depleted uranium, which is the awful exception). Here are some examples:
– The medical literature has reported that some Alzheimer’s patients were able to return home to their families after being rapidly detoxed by intravenous chelation from heavy metals.
– Some autistic children, poisoned either by a tuna fish-eating mother during pregnancy or by mercury-preserved (thimerosal) vaccines, have had their brain functions restored by various detox protocols. (See Recovery From Autism: A Success Story Using Detoxification and Nutrition by Dr. John Gannage posted at www.vitalitymagazine.com)
– The prevention of damage to a fetus is achievable by analyzing the mother’s toxicity and nutritional status through her hair, and then detoxing her prenatally.
Fortunately, my own personal road to recovery was facilitated by my dentist, who was a member of the International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology. He sent me for a hair analysis to detect heavy metal levels and to establish bio-compatibility for the substitute fillings. Effective healing can only take place after complete amalgam removal, switching to an organic diet, and appropriate supplements.
Today, we can still benefit from the advice of Hippocrates, given 2,500 years ago, namely to understand that health is our “most valuable possession and we can learn how to treat illness by [our] own judgment.”
 Lead poisoning and the fall of Rome: https://tinyurl.com/ycratmon
 What killed Napoleon: https://tinyurl.com/yb4r6f2z
 Mercury and deformed births: https://tinyurl.com/y8cm6aaf
 Iraqi poison grain disaster: https://tinyurl.com/y9y7g8td
 Human Genome Project: https://tinyurl.com/y89b2ol8
 Lawsuit Claims Monsanto Hid Cancer Danger of Roundup for Decades: https://tinyurl.com/ybk7o2bo
 Johnson & Johnson Told to Pay $4.7 billion in baby powder lawsuit: https://tinyurl.com/y86ccho4
- J. Krop MD, Healing the Planet: One Patient At A Time, second edition, Kos Inc., 2003 (also contains detox protocols for doctors)
- S. Rogers MD, Detoxify or Die, Sand Key Co. 1-800-846-6687.
- K.-G. Wenzel & R. I. Pataracchia ND, Earth’s Gift to Medicine: Minerals in Health and Disease, Kos Inc. 2005 (all essential as well as toxic minerals explained). Order: (519) 927-1049
- Books by Dr. Nicholas Gonzalez include: Conquering Cancer: Volume One – 50 Pancreatic and Breast Cancer Patients on The Gonzalez Nutritional Protocol, available on Amazon.ca
- Visit the website of the International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology (www.iaomt.org) for dentists trained in non-toxic dentistry and detoxification therapy
- Hair analysis can be done through most naturopaths, wholistic MDs, and other health professionals. Or visit: https://www.canaltlabs.com to do it yourself.
- American Academy of Environmental Medicine, www.aaem.com,
Helke Ferrie is a medical science writer with a master's degree in physical anthropology. Her specialty lies in investigative research into ethical issues in medicine and the politics of health. She started her investigative journalism career in the mid-1990s, looking at issues of medicine and environment. She has been a regular contributor to Vitality Magazine ever since. Helke has also authored books on various subjects including: "Ending Denial: The Lyme Disease Epidemic", "What Part of No! Don't They Understand: Rescuing Food and Medicine from Government Abuse", and "The Earth's Gift to Medicine".