There are many ways to assess nutritional status including symptom questionnaires, iridol- ogy, kinesiology, diet sheets, computer analyses, blood tests, etc.
Why use a controversial tool such as measuring tissue mineral levels in hair? Here are 12 reasons:
A WINDOW INTO THE CELLS
Nutritional physiology takes place at the cellular level, not within blood or any other location. What you eat is not as important as what is reaching your body cells.
Tissue mineral analysis is unique in that it inexpensively provides information directly about cellular activity – the main site of nutritional metabolism.
DETECTING TOXIC METALS
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 methods approved by the Environmental Protection Agency for detecting toxic metals in the body.
Biochemical imbalances can contribute to many mental and emotional conditions. I know of no other tool that even comes close to tissue mineral testing to predict, explain, and suggest nutritional solutions for such common complaints as anxiety, depression, hyperactivity, phobias, insomnia, etc.
REBUILDING THE BODY’S ENERGY MECHANISM
Having an adequate energy level is essential for health. All body activities including healing depend upon adequate energy synthesis. Tissue mineral analysis can be used to assess the efficiency of the energy system of the body including the glycolysis and citric acid cycles, and to recommend nutrients and foods that will assist in rebuilding the energy system.
DETERMINING OXIDATION TYPES
Dr. George Watson discovered that some people burn food at a more rapid rate than normal, and some at a slower rate. Knowing a person’s oxidation rate, as he called it, can help decide which foods are most needed, and which nutrients would be most helpful to restore balance. Giving the wrong nutrients can make your health problems worse. Tissue mineral analysis can be utilized to determine an individual’s oxidation rate with mathematical precision.
One of the most useful concepts in health care is to be able to identify trends before they occur, so that action can be taken to avoid them. Twenty or more trends can be identified from a properly interpreted tissue mineral analysis. The ability to identify trends alone makes tissue mineral analysis an invaluable test.
EXACT AMOUNTS OF SUPPLEMENTS AND PROPORTIONS OF FOODS
One problem in designing nutrition programs is determining how much and which nutrients and foods to recommend. Because of its mathematical nature, hair mineral analysis offers a way to determine supplement dosage and proportions of foods with greater accuracy.
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 tissue mineral test, the function of major glands and organs can be assessed, often long before abnormalities appear on x-rays and blood tests.
CONSTRUCTING A PICTURE OF ONE’S BODY CHEMISTRY
Though not done by many who claim to understand hair analysis, the correct interpretation of the hair test allows construction of a metabolic picture of the way your body is functioning and the way it is responding to stress. I know of no other simple test that allows for the construction of this metabolic blueprint.
A common problem in nutritional therapy is determining if a person is actually improving, especially if some symptoms persist or new symptoms arise. Repeat tissue mineral tests and comparison with previous tests can often provide answers as to whether improvement is occurring, why some symptoms persist, and what to expect in the future.
SUPERIORITY OVER BLOOD TESTS
Blood tests will always be valuable to determine cholesterol, hemoglobin levels, and many other parameters. However, blood tests are incapable of providing the information provided by the hair analysis. There are several reasons why.
Mineral levels in 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 vary but little and less information can be gleaned.
Blood tests are subject to daily fluctuation due to foods eaten the previous day, emotional states, etc. Hair analysis will not vary from day to day, and provides a long-term metabolic blueprint. Understanding this difference avoids much confusion and the long-term reading can be used to definite advantage.
ACCURACY AND RELIABILITY
While some criticism of the accuracy of tissue mineral testing has been made, procedures exist to make the test as accurate or more accurate than blood tests. No test is 100% accurate.
Tissue mineral analysis by atomic absorption is not new. It has been around for 30 years and is used in every industrial and university chemistry lab. New computer-controlled instruments make excellent reliability possible.
Results of tissue tests can vary because instrumentation and handling procedures differ from lab to lab. This is a problem with some laboratories, however, not with the test. I only use one laboratory, Analytical Research Labs, where the quality control procedures and handling of samples are excellent.