[Guest Post]: Heavy Metals and How to Remove Them from Your Body

[Guest Post]: Heavy Metals and How to Remove Them from Your Body

Did you know that all of us, probably every day, are consuming heavy metals in some form?  That's a scary thought!  This blog post is from qualified naturopath Shannon Burford, of Cura Integrative Medicine.  He gives us a background of heavy metals, as well as simple ways to remove them from our bodies.


Pollution on Earth and Our Health

Today, more than ever, it is important to eat a diet high is nutrient dense foods and anti-oxidants because the world is increasingly contaminated with pollution. Some pollution includes heavy metals which comes from batteries in landfill, large top feeding fish, renovation work in old houses, mine sites and industry.

Everyone living on the planet is exposed to some level of heavy metals found in dust and the body naturally detoxes this with the right minerals, vitamins and diet.

Severe heavy metal toxicity is life threatening and a famous Western Australian case occurred in Esperance with high levels of lead dust causing hundreds of birds to die suddenly. Realistically though for the average person, levels of exposure are low and persistent. The effects are subtle and generally decrease the overall antioxidant levels in our bodies, making us more susceptible to a lowered immune system.

Some symptoms of heavy metal toxicity with high levels include:

  • Kidney (renal) diseases, liver (hepatic) diseases,
  • Endocrine disorders: hypothyroidism, adrenal fatigue, and sex hormone imbalance
  • Chronic pain throughout the muscles and tendons such as Fibromyalgia
  • Chronic tiredness – general feeling of discomfort, fatigue, and illness
  • Brain fog – state of forgetfulness and confusion
  • Chronic infections such as Candida or Bacterial
  • Gastrointestinal complaints, such as diarrhoea, constipation, bloating, gas, heartburn, and indigestion
  • Prolonged Dizziness
  • Visual disturbances
  • Mood swings, depression, and/or anxiety
  • Nervous system malfunctions – burning extremities, numbness, tingling, paralysis, and/or an electrifying feeling throughout the body


How to Remove Heavy Metals from the Body

If you suspect you have been exposed to heavy metals or have heavy metal toxicity, get a test to see where you stand. A hair mineral analysis is a good start to assess levels being excreted from your body through your hair. A hair analysis can determine which heavy metals are overloading your body and measure the levels of each toxic metal as illustrated in a simple bar graph showing acceptable and unacceptable reference ranges. It is important to note that often the hair result does not show excretion toxins but it does show changes in other elements associated with toxicity.

The hair analysis also tells you which essential minerals your body is lacking, which it has too much of, and which important mineral ratios are imbalanced due to heavy metals and other nutritional deficiencies. Often hair results will show low levels of selenium, zinc, iron, calcium and molybdenum with heavy metal toxicity.

A Hair Mineral Analysis can identify over-exposure to heavy metals such as uranium, lead, mercury, arsenic or aluminum and is therefore used for heavy metal testing. It can also detect whether there is an excess or deficiency of vital nutrient minerals such as calcium, potassium, zinc and iron. 


Diet Essentials to Remove Heavy Metals

The fastest and easiest way to get started is to start to increase your intake of nutrient dense foods, sometimes called superfoods. These are foods which have a high amount of vitamins and minerals and antioxidants.

Some very good foods for detoxing include-

  • Chlorella
  • Spirulina
  • Beetroot
  • Raw garlic
  • Coriander
  • Goji berries
  • Dulse
  • Broccoli sprouts

Aim to eat these food daily and include a vegetable juice made fresh.



Shannon Burford is passionate about evidence-based naturopathy and nutrition for optimal health. He runs a busy practice in Claremont, Perth called Cura Integrative Medicine, where he sees patients from babies all the way up to the elderly.

After beginning his journey with his own health challenge, he was determined to help others and studied two Bachelor degrees in Science, Health Science and Naturopathy. He is currently studying his masters in Complimentary Medicine.

For more information contact the Cura clinic on 08 9284 4644 or visit the website or Facebook Page.

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