Are heavy metals a root cause to your gut dysbiosis?
One major reason is that some people struggle so much with candida and parasites is that these microbes are in our gut to PROTECT us from the toxic effects of heavy metals. This is why “kill” protocols that just focus getting rid of candida or parasites can be misguided, and ineffective. The microbes are there for a reason. They are trying to neutralize deadly toxins in our tissues: heavy metals.
Addressing candida and parasites outside of the context of toxicity that they exist within is ultimately misguided.
So how do you address heavy metals? Jumping straight to an aggressive heavy metal detox protocol may not be the best option. We need to first support the immune system and detoxification pathways in gentle but powerful and foundation ways. Often, just by using intentional dietary protocols to rebalance the gut microbiome and open the detoxification pathways through simple at home methods, the body will start releasing metals naturally. No further intervention necessary.
After rebuilding the gut microbiome and opening the detox pathways naturally for 1-2 years, and you STILL have stubborn symptoms especially like fatigue, depression and constipation, this may indicate heavy metal toxicity that you have not been able to eliminate. At this point, taking a more direct approach may be warranted.
The first thing to consider is your mineral status. Heavy metals engage in what is called “ionic mimicry”- meaning that heavy metals can replace the essential functions of minerals in your tissues in the case of severe mineral deficiency. The body would rather hold onto toxic metals that are performing essential functions and keeping you alive. So focusing on refeeding minerals is essential. Food wise, this looks like sea vegetables, fish eggs, lower toxin seafood like smaller fish, raw dairy, unrefined sea salt. Bottled mineral water from mineral rich springs is another great option. Trying to eat high amounts of fruits and vegetables that have specifically been grown on regenerative farms is also helpful- just eating fruits and vegetables from your local grocery store probably won’t help as most farmland is devoid of mineral rich soil. It is also likely you will need to supplement minerals, particularly things like selenium, iodine, zinc, magnesium, boron, etc., although ideally this should be done under the supervision of a clinician.
Be mindful of oxalates in your diet- this means avoiding plant foods that are high oxalate (which sometimes are listed as those high in calcium and magnesium, so be cautious). Oxalates can bind to heavy metals we are exposed to and prevent us from eliminating them.
I also recommend absorbing minerals through your skin- swim in the ocean, lakes and rivers as much as possible. Visit mineral hot springs. Spray magnesium chloride on your skin and take epsom salt baths.
Expose your body to hormesis- this means beneficial environmental stressors! What these stressors do is basically “kill off” your weakest mitochondria, which our the primary detox mechanisms of the cell. This looks like sauna, cold exposure, exercise, and fasting. These spur more glutathione production, which is necessary for our body to detoxify.
Meat stock is high in cysteine and methionine, which supports the detox pathways that eliminate heavy metals. Onions and garlic also provide essential nutrients for these detox pathways.
Phase 3 detox is how we actually get these metals out of the body- the colon! Heavy metals are fat soluble toxins, meaning they release out of the bile in our stool. Triggering bowel movements daily through supplementation or use of enemas is essential if you struggle with constipation. If you aren’t prone to constipation, binders such as activated charcoal and bentonite clay can be helpful as well.
Do I recommend IV chelation therapy for heavy metals? I have had it done TWICE. I have mixed feelings about the process. It did help me improve symptoms of fatigue I was still struggling with, but it also caused damage to my liver and gallbladder that it took me years to recover from. Looking back, I think I would have gone about things more gently and been more patient with my body. But this is a very personal decision for you to weight the pros and cons of.
Heavy metals CAN be detoxified through natural methods, although it may take years. I encourage you to implement the practices described in this video.