Zeolites for Heavy Metal Detoxification
As our world has become increasingly polluted a greater toxic load has been placed on our bodies. We are evermore exposed to toxic heavy metals, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, voltile organic solvents, tobacco smoke, phalates, dioxin, drugs, PCB’s, herbicides, pesticides, antibiotics and synthetic hormones. We are continually exposed to these reactive toxins in the food we eat, the air we breathe, the water we drink as well as cosmetic and household products.
Toxins can affect just about every system in our bodies resulting in: poor digestion, dysbiosis, fatigue, leaky gut syndrome, decreased immunity, allergies, chemical sensitivities, headaches, loss of hair, hormone imbalances, reproductive failure, respiratory disorders, cancer, depression, dementia, body odor, neurological imbalances, cardiovascular disease, skin conditions such as psoriasis and eczema, to name a few.
As part of our overall detoxification program we often recommend using Zeolites to aid this process. Zeolite is a naturally occurring alkaline volcanic ash (clinoptilolite) that has a crystalline honeycomb-like structure formed over millions of years when lava comes into contact with sea water. Zeolite’s have a natural negative charge which attracts and absorbs positively charged heavy metals and toxins. They are attracted to the negative charge of the zeolite and flow into the honeycomb structure becoming trapped or caught within its cage structure and are held there. Because of the strong electrical bonding they are not released back into the surrounding fluids.
Zeolite has shown to attract mercury, cadmium, lead, arsenic and other heavy metals first because they carry a much greater positive charge than other molecules. Minerals with a lower positive charge such as calcium, sodium, potassium and magnesium have a lessor affinity.
Zeolites also have an unusual property called their ‘cation exchange’. They are able to attract and hold higher positive charged molecules and release lower positive charged particles that they may have attracted previously back into the surrounding environment. This cation exchange can be measured and varies from one zeolite to another depending on how the zeolite was originally formed.
It is negatively charged and therefore attracts and captures harmful substances with a positive charge which includes heavy metals and certain organic toxins. Zeolites travel through the body as crystal cages attracting heavy metals and other toxins like pesticides, dioxins and PCB’s just as a magnet would attract iron filings. The zeolite-toxin inclusion complex then both pass out of the body within the next 6 to 8 hours or so.
As previously mentioned Zeolites generally have a low affinity for calcium, magnesium, potassium etc and a high affinity for lead, mercury, arsenic and cadmium. Unlike other chelators, zeolites actually prefer mercury and lead to the essential minerals. The toxic minerals are structurally much smaller than the essential minerals and therefore fit better into the crystalline cage structure- they actually push the good minerals out. Atomic absorption spectroscopy studies have revealed that the selectivity of zeolite for toxic minerals is in the following order (highest attraction first):
Studies in normal volunteers have shown a 5-7 fold increase in urinary excretion of heavy metals within a week of using zeolites. This represents a removal of toxins from the blood only as they cannot cross the blood brain barrier or enter tissues however continued use may lead to a slower removal from other tissues where the toxins are stored as they are released into the blood. Heavy metals get stored in slow turnover tissues such as bone and brain. If the extracellular fluid and plasma levels are kept low enough for a long enough period, all tissues, including brain cells will have a greater likelihood of downloading their toxic levels of metals.
Research with zeolite has also implies that it may also improve liver function and appears to block viral replication. It also helps balance the body’s pH promoting a more alkaline state and improves oxygenation of the blood. Preliminary studies suggest it increases serotonin production, therefore improving mood. It binds mycotoxins (toxins from fungi and yeast) and has been therefore used for many years in poultry feeds to prevent aflatoxin poisoning.
There are thousands of referenced research papers on zeolite. Most of these however are animal studies- to date there are no meaningful human studies but they are currently underway. Zeolite has no side-effects so the risk to benefit ratio is very small. Safety studies have proven zeolites to be very safe to take. They can however cause a healing crisis reaction if you detoxify too rapidly. This may cause headaches, nausea, fatigue and flu like symptoms. If this occurs you need to reduce the dose in order to slow the process down. Feedback from regular users so far has been extremely positive.
I recommend treatment should continue for at least 3 months which in most cases we have tested has shown to be sufficient to bring most heavy metal levels down to very low levels. Heavy metal testing is the only true way of knowing exactly how long you will need to be on it for. The manufacturers recommend to take it indefinitely however I do not feel that it is necessary. Once you have got your levels down you may chose to take it for a couple of months each year to maintain low levels through out your life.
Zeolites should not be taken by anyone taking medication containing heavy metals, such as lithium or platinum, (which is often found in some cancer medications). They should also be spaced apart from any mineral supplements you may be taking. It is also recommended to drink plenty of clean water (8 to 10 glasses a day) while on zeolites to help flush your system.
After comparing all the various zeolite products on the market we recommend Zeoactiv8 drops as they are submicron particle size, the cavity (cage) is empty unlike other brands and the zeolite mineral itself is mined from the cleanest zeolite deposits in the world.
A 50ml bottle of zeolite drops are available through our laboratory. Zeolite liquid is available here or alternatively refer the ordering information page to view the various ordering methods available. The cost is considerably cheaper than other brands available especially considering it contains twice the concentration of zeolites compared to its closest competitor.
Other agents we recommend to remove heavy metals include DMSA, EDTA and glutathione. Each agent targets certain heavy metals so the agent of choice will depend on which metals are a problem. All these are available through our laboratory. Contact us for details.