Minerals and Emotions

how-deficiencies-and-excesses-of-minerals

It is absolutely incredible and fascinating when you learn how nutrients can influence our health. It’s even more interesting when you learn that they can influence our personalities! Let’s go over how deficiencies and excesses of certain minerals can affect our emotions.

Calcium

Calcium is the most abundant mineral in the body- 99% should be found in the bone (but over consumption is the cause of tissue calcification). The 1% not in the bones is needed for nerve transmission, blood pressure regulation, iron metabolism, proper cell division, plus health skin and teeth.

TOO MUCH CALCIUM can make a person very sluggish, apathetic, indifferent, numb, and it is related to the Calcium Shell (read more here!)

TOO LITTLE CALCIUM can make someone irritable, emotionally unstable, tense, and unable to slow down/ driven

Magnesium

Magnesium is responsible for thousands of enzyme reactions and proteins in the body. Common symptoms of magnesium deficiency include Anxiety, Depression,PMS, PCOS, Endometriosis, Muscle pain (think Fibromyalgia), Insomnia, Headaches/migraines, Heartbeat irregularities, High Blood Pressure, Diabetes, and Constipation.

TOO MUCH MAGNESIUM  can make a person sluggish, depressed, and withdrawn from others

TOO LITTLE MAGNESIUM is related to hyperactivity (think “ADD” or “ADHD”), irritability, or being high-strung

Sodium

Sodium is found in all of the body’s cells, as well as in the blood and other bodily fluids. Sodium (along with potassium) helps to maintain the body’s fluid balance. Sodium plays a huge part in nerve transmission, muscle contraction, and for the creation of hydrochloric acid.

TOO MUCH SODIUM contributes to excess energy so people tend to be on-the-go constantly; it makes people push themselves to the limit in order to burn off that extra energy

TOO LITTLE SODIUM causes the exact opposite- it makes people fatigued, not motivated, and lethargic

Potassium

Potassium is essential for nerve and cell health, as well as heartbeat regulation, energy production, and the metabolism of carbs and protein.

TOO MUCH POTASSIUM has similar effects as high sodium- people tend to be overactive, driven and pushing themselves to the limit

TOO LITTLE POTASSIUM also has a similar effect as low sodium- the person is lethargic, not motivated and usually depressed

Copper

Copper is actually present in all of the tissues of the body.  It helps make collagen and hemoglobin, plus helps to make oxygen in red blood cells (along with iron).  COPPER IS AN ANTIOXIDANT! This is why we want to make it bioavailable and not try to just detox it- please read my post on copper dysregulation to learn more. Copper is essential for a number of enzyme reactions, as well having roles in bone formation and healing. Copper aids iron absorption- this is why “iron anemia” is not just as simple as adding iron. Fixing a copper or iron deficiency depends on ceruloplasmin production- which I talk about in my copper dysregulation post linked above.

TOO MUCH COPPER can cause excess sentimentality, OCD type behavior, depression, mood swings, schizophrenia, PMS, any postpartum issues like depression, anxiety, and even psychosis (copper can TRIPLE during pregnancy)

TOO LITTLE COPPER plays a role in mental health as well- it can make a person feel detached, numb, and spacey. Low bioavailabile copper can cause chronic fatigue as well and make someone unmotivated. Copper is needed for serotonin and other important neurotransmitters- which is why too little copper is just as bad as too much!

Iron

Iron is one of the minerals that we hear so much about- but iron supplements are actually wreaking havoc for a lot of people! Iron is very essential to life but we have to focus on balancing copper as well since they work in tandem, plus ceruloplasmin is the copper and iron binding protein. Our food is over-fortified with synthetic nutrients like iron and this is contributing to a lot of health issues.  Iron toxicity is a HUGE issue right now. But on the good side of iron, we need it for immune function, energy production, making hemoglobin, and it helps protect cells from oxidative damage.

TOO MUCH IRON can cause a person to become very angry and aggressive most of the time. Consequently, being angry can cause us to hold on to even more iron too! Read about the iron-toxic personality here.

TOO LITTLE IRON causes extreme fatigue and weakness

Zinc

Zinc is needed for at least 300 different enzyme reactions in the body. Zinc helps make folate more bioavailable. Zinc is needed to convert retinol (Vitamin A) to retinal. A deficiency in zinc can lead to low levels of bioavailable vitamin A as well. Zinc deficiency signs include chronic and severe diarrhea, immune system deficiencies, impaired wound healing, diminished appetite, impaired taste sensation, night blindness (because zinc and retinol have a direct relationship), swelling and clouding of the corneas and behavioral disturbances (because of its relationship with copper)

TOO MUCH ZINC can cause aggressiveness, or any other emotional instability because of how zinc can antagonize copper

TOO LITTLE ZINC can contribute to indecisiveness, low libido for both men and women,  extra feminine characteristics, emotional instabilities

You can read some more about emotions and minerals here.

Want to know how nutrients interact with each other to cause these symptoms? Read my post on nutrient interactions here!

High Heavy Metals and Emotions

Mercury- When elevated, mercury can cause extreme mental symptoms. Think “mad hatter”! You can read more on Mercury here.

Aluminum- When aluminum is high, one can experience severe brain fog, and it plays a huge role in Alzheimer’s. Read my whole post on Aluminum here.

Cadmium- When cadmium is high, one can be very stubborn, manipulative,  egotistical, and aggressive. Here is my whole post on cadmium.

Mercury Poisoning: A Safe Approach

mercury poisoning

It’s pretty safe to say that most people in the Western world have probably been exposed to too much mercury. You’ll find mercury in vaccines (where it gets thrown right into the blood stream- much harder for the body to process vs. it being ingested), dental tooth fillings ( what a dangerous idea! Mercury in your mouth), fish (especially tuna), and even cleaning products.  Mercury can be passed through the placenta so a mother with amalgam fillings can unfortunately pass along this metal to her unborn baby. Since mercury fillings were introduced about 100 years ago, this has given us a long time to build up this toxic metal.

Other sources of mercury include pollution in our air, our water, acid rain, talc powder,broken thermometers, batteries, diuretics, suppositories, wood preservatives, adhesives, floor waxes, tattoos, fabric softener, hair dies, paint, plastics, chlorine bleach, laxatives, and the “eco-friendly” CFL light bulbs.

Symptoms of Mercury Toxicity

Nearly every illness out there could be related to mercury toxicity, especially if you know that you have had exposure.  Mercury can build up in the brain, lungs, heart, and kidneys so it can constantly be creating symptoms. Mercury is often found with Candida and parasites- there are many theories on why this happens. Some think that yeast, bacteria, viruses and parasites feed off of the mercury but others think that since mercury weakens the immune system it allows us to get this build-up of excess junk.

The most common symptoms include:

  • Adrenal issues
  • Auto-immune illness like RA, fibromyalgia, etc
  • Mineral dysregulation/deficiencies
  • Parkinson’s
  • Acne
  • Issues with anger or other emotions
  • Depression, anxiety, racing mind
  • Insomnia
  • Tinnitus
  • Blood sugar issues
  • Infertility
  • Literally ANYTHING you can think of

 

Testing for Mercury

Long term mercury toxicity is hard to detect. If it has been building up for decades then you will more than likely not see it on any test. The most common way to test for mercury is a urine challenge using a chelation drug.  After taking the drug, you collect your urine over 24 hours and a lab tests it for how much mercury was excreted. Chelation drugs can be dangerous- we’ll get into this in a minute.

The other way to test for mercury is HTMA. Again, if you have had chronic mercury exposure then it is unlikely you will see mercury on the HTMA, especially if you are a slow oxidizer with weak adrenals.  Sometimes we may see mercury come out in the hair once a person becomes stronger but most mercury is eliminated through urine and skin.

Treating Mercury Toxicity

Now this is where many people tend to disagree.  One of the most popular ways to treat metal poisoning, especially mercury, is chelation. Chelation is a process that usually uses 2 drugs (DMPS and DMSA) to remove mercury from the body. The biggest problem with chelation is that it also removes GOOD minerals from the body as well as bad metals. So you are stripping your body of much needed nutrients when you are already in a deficient state.

Chelation is powerful enough to pull the metals out of storage (only according to some sources- others say that it cannot pull the metals out of storage) but if the body is weak, it cannot properly eliminate the metals properly and will likely redeposit itself elsewhere in the body, usually the brain. I was part of a group on FB that loves chelation and I was so discouraged to see all of these people suffering for the sake of ripping metals (and minerals) out of the body.  This is not safe, and I will never recommend it!

The best ways to eliminate mercury include:

  1. HTMA to determine mineral status
  2. Balance the nervous system
  3. Aid detoxification- liver and lymph health especially
  4. Strengthen the body with good nutrition
  5. Strengthen your skin! Skin is our biggest organ and plays a huge role in detoxification. Mercury apparently can be excreted through the skin when it is functioning properly. Sauna therapy, dry skin brushing, getting adequate sunshine and eliminating toxic beauty products are all essential to help the skin breathe!
  6. As much sleep and rest as possible. We heal when we sleep and without sleep, we will not detox properly since the liver and lymph work while we sleep
  7. Fix deficiencies in zinc, chromium, manganese and selenium
  8. Fix copper dysregulation– Mercury has the ability to bind with copper and make it not able to work properly. We need copper to help undo the damage of oxidative stress in the body, which mercury creates a lot of.

What If I have Mercury Fillings?

There is much debate about this these days. Some people cannot make progress without removing their fillings, and others just want to get the junk OUT of their mouth once they learn about it.  The best thing to do is to work on your adrenals as much as you can, strengthen your body, and try not to stress about the fillings until you feel strong enough to handle the extraction.  Some people that jump into getting them removed completely crash.  When they take the fillings out, the mercury releases vapor.  This vapor is usually what causes the body to go into overdrive and crash if the elimination organs aren’t working properly.

If you decide to get your amalgams out make sure you find a very competent dentist that has been removing amalgams for years. You can check out the whole proper procedure on this website and you should be able to search for dentists that know how to properly remove the fillings.

You can also check out BioRay’s site for more info on safe amalgam removal and how to use some of their products to do so safely.

Most people will have some form of mercury build-up. We have to aim to strengthen the body in order for it to take care of the metals itself instead of ripping metals and minerals, and then having to go back and replenish the body.  Since mercury is not the only issue that we have, it makes much more sense to nourish ourselves and allow our bodies to heal on their own.

I hope this post was helpful for some of you that are on the fence about how to tackle mercury!

Sources:

http://www.holistichelp.net/blog/mercury-poisoning-and-candida-overgrowth/

Metals and the MInd

Mercury by Dr Wilson