What is Hair Mineral Analysis? What can one reveal?
LABORATORY ANALYSIS PROCEDURE (used in your Nutritional Balancing program and Hair Analysis Test)
The procedure described here is used at Analytical Research Laboratories in Phoenix, Arizona. Similar, but at times less rigorous procedures may be used at other hair testing laboratories.
1. Hair samples arriving at the laboratory are first cut into small pieces with surgical scissors.
2. A precisely weighed amount of hair is digested overnight in nitric and perchloric acid.
3.The following day the sample is rehydrated and placed in the measuring instrument to be assessed for minerals.
The most common measuring instrument today is an ICP-mass spectrometer. This is a highly sophisticated hybrid, computer-controlled machine costing several hundred thousand dollars. It is not a “home or office unit”. Any doctor who runs this test in his office is not using the same equipment and results may not be as accurate.
Essentially, the dissolved sample is burned at a high temperature. Each mineral gives off a characteristic spectrum or frequencies of light, which is picked up by sensitive detectors in the measuring instrument. Calibration and precise control of the flame temperature are essential to obtain accurate readings.
Licensing. In America, hair mineral analysis laboratories are inspected annually by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers For Medicare and Medicaid Services, Division of Health Standards and Quality. An operating license is issued only if personnel and procedures meet rigorous standards.
Quality Control. Analytical Research Labs runs control samples and blank samples at the beginning, middle and end of every batch. Also, small amount of hair is set aside and any readings that are far out of range are retested automatically at no extra charge. This is not done at most laboratories.
Hair tissue mineral analysis is not something that can be done in an office or at home. If someone offers a test that is done at the office, it is not the same test. Only about eight or nine laboratories offer commercial hair tissue mineral analysis in America and a few exist overseas. All other laboratories send hair samples to one of the few labs that have the correct equipment and licensing to perform the test.
Hair Mineral Analysis is a window into the cells. It is a tissue biopsy and non-invasive. Nutritional physiology takes place at the cellular level, not within blood or any other location. In other words, what you eat is not as important as what is reaching your body cells. The hair test is unique in that it inexpensively provides information directly about cellular activity, the main site of nutritional metabolism.
Nutritional Balancing is the programme that uses Hair Mineral Analysis to discover the reasons why a person would be experiencing certain symptoms and then treating the body as a whole, with diet and targeted supplements to detox and raise the vitality of the whole body as well as supporting various organs. In this way, no one symptom is addressed but all are addressed at the same time. We allow the body to heal itself of symptoms in its own order and to detox metals and toxic forms of minerals, chemicals, drugs etc in a gradual process when the body has the vitality to do this. Again, toxic metals will be eliminated in the order that the body decides - we don't force anything out.
1. Toxic metals are a serious problem today, contributing to many metabolic disorders and distressing symptoms including fatigue, infections, high blood pressure, heart disease, cancer and diabetes. While routine blood tests cannot detect chronic heavy metal poisoning, tissue mineral analysis is one of the few mehods approved by the Environmental Protection Agency for detecting toxic metals in the body.
2. The Energy Cycle. Having adequate energy is essential for health and all bodily functions and activities. Energy is needed even for healing. Vitality isn't something we need to lose as we get older. Tissue mineral analysis can be used to assess the efficiency of the energy system of the body including the glycolysis and citric acid cycles (the energy-producing cycles within the cells), and to recommend nutrients and foods that will assist in rebuilding the energy system.
3. The Metabolic rate or Oxidation rate. Dr George Watson (PhD, researcher UCLA in the 1970's) discovered that some people burn food at a more rapid rate than normal and some at a slower rate. Knowing the oxidation rate of a person can help decide which foods are most needed and which nutrients would help restore the right balance. This, in fact, can be done with mathematical precision with the hair test.
The oxidation rate and oxidation types in Nutritional Balancing pertain only to Dr. Paul Eck’s method of assessing the oxidation types using hair mineral analysis - when the hair has not been washed at the laboratory. This is essential in order to make an accurate determination of the oxidation type or stage of stress. Most hair mineral laboratories in the United States and most around the world wash the hair in powerful detergents, alcohol, water or solvents. Only two laboratories do not wash the hair, Analytical Research Laboratories (ARL) that Dr. Eck founded, (arltma.com) and Trace Elements, Inc., (TEI) founded by a student of Dr. Eck’s. Dr Eck was a physician and biochemist who pioneered the use of hair mineral analysis, discovering the technology of mineral balancing to release toxic metals and handle disease.
We prefer to use ARL for our analyses as their programmes have been updated and the graphs are much easier to read. They also have ideal levels and values that Dr. Eck discovered which is also crucial for accurate readings of hair patterns.
This is the only system of metabolic typing that we trust and use, as it has proven reliable and consistent.
4. Assessing organ, gland and tissue function. Levels and ratios of tissue minerals relate to the activity of specific organs and glands. By calculating ratios on a hair test, the function of major glands and organs can be assessed, often long before abnormalities appear on blood tests or x-rays. We can see how the body is responding to stress and at what stage of stress the body is at. When we are looking at hair analysis we are assessing mostly biochemical or internal stress ie nutrient depletion, toxic metals, nutrient antagonists (such as chemicals) and distorted mineral patterns.
Biochemical imbalances (hormonal, mineral and vitamin) can contribute to a host of emotional problems. The hair test and a nutritional balancing programme can explain and help correct common complaints such as anxiety, depression, hyperactivity, phobias, insomina etc. This is because balancing one's mineral levels is a key factor in improving one's vitality, which naturally improves one's mood and gives everyone a greater ability to reach one's full potential.
5. The superiority of the hair tissue test over blood tests. Blood tests will always be valuable to assess cholesterol, hemoglobin levels, and many other parameters. However, mineral levels in the blood are ten times less than they are in the tissues, making measurement difficult. Also, blood levels are kept within very narrow limits by the body for various reasons, so that readings can vary little and also they are subject to daily fluctuations due to food intake, emotional feelings etc. Hair analysis provides a longer term metabolic blueprint (around 3 months) and we use this longer-term reading to our advantage.
6. Exact amounts of supplements and a precise diet. We mostly use Dr Eck's exactly prepared supplements that are in particular amounts and ratios to balance all hair mineral patterns – some supplements are used to balance one person's chemistry as shown on the hair test and others are used for someone else. Retesting every 3 or 4 months is very important to make sure you are on the correct supplements. We can determine supplement dosage and foods a person needs because of the mathematical nature of hair analysis which gives us a greater accuracy than if we were to design a nutrition programme without this test.
The Nutritional Balancing diet is unique in modern society and insists on a 70% cooked vegetable diet. You could also call it the alkaline reserve mineral diet or the good digestion diet. Depending on the hair test results we modify this diet to suit the person's oxidation rate and symptoms.
Finally, to achieve greater results with hair mineral analysis and the Nutritional Balancing Programme, we use proven and effective addtional detox methods and supplements (such as kelp - iodine, omega 3 and vitamin d3) to help speed up the progress of the programme and to balance the body in the 21st century.
Dr Paul Eck on this groundbreaking science:
The Chain Reaction Principle: Why just one mineral out of balance can affect all other minerals in the body
Every single mineral in the body has an effect on every other mineral in the body. So if just one mineral is imbalanced in the body, this affects all minerals by starting a massive chain reaction of mineral imbalances.
Most people say, “I’m just taking a little magnesium,” or a little zinc or whatever it is. If people only knew the harm they could cause by taking even one mineral supplement they didn’t need, or taking the right supplement in excessive quantities.
For instance, consider iron. Thousands of people take iron tablets because they are tired. Unfortunately, if iron is not taken in the right ratio with other minerals, it will make you more tired.
Everybody’s mineral chart is different and the amount of iron, and other minerals, which you need for more energy may be completely different than for the person next to you.
Here is what could happen to a person who takes an iron supplement:
Sodium goes up. This is the first thing that happens. The iron will cause sodium levels to rise as a consequence of stimulating the adrenal glands.
Magnesium goes down. Magnesium levels will go down because sodium lowers magnesium.
Calcium goes down. When magnesium goes down, calcium also goes down to try to maintain the same calcium/magnesium ratio.
Potassium goes up. Calcium and potassium also move in opposite directions. So when calcium goes down, potassium moves up.
Nitrogen goes down. Since the person is going into fast oxidation, he is starting to cannibalise his own proteins, instead of building them. This lowers the nitrogen level.
Copper goes down. Since tissue respiration is speeding up, copper is being used more quickly. If the copper is already at low levels, or, if the person has a high zinc to copper ratio, then his copper availability could plunge to dangerously low levels. At levels below 1.0, the person moves into a cancer danger zone.
Zinc goes down. As copper goes down, zinc goes down to maintain the proper ratio with it. Since zinc is needed for proper functioning of the adrenal glands, the lowering of zinc will eventually exhaust the adrenals. This will make you more tired than before you started.
Manganese goes up. As zinc goes down, the manganese goes up, since they normally move in opposite directions. Eventually, manganese reserves will become depleted.
As the manganese levels collapse, the person becomes weak and indecisive (exhausted adrenals) — weaker than he was before he began taking the iron tablets.
In other words, the taking of iron has made the anaemia worse.
I could go on and on. All these mineral imbalances could easily be caused by just one mineral which has become too high in relation to the others — in this case, iron. You can see now what can happen when you take “just a little iron” to get your energy up.
So when a person has 21 minerals out of balance, just imagine how complicated it can get trying to balance them. Each mineral in the body has an effect on all the other minerals. No mineral works alone.
No matter what your views are on the “creation” of man, one thing is certain — the physical body of man is made up of minerals. Minerals are the basis of all life on this planet.
Every single physical living cell on earth is derived totally from minerals and mineral-based compounds. Every single living body cell. including the DNA genetic codes themselves are dependent upon minerals for both their structure and function.
Yet, without Hair Tissue Mineral Analysis, there is no scientific way of telling exactly which minerals and vitamins you need.