I look and feel pretty healthy, but you can see it in the results of my hair test above. Mercury. Aluminum. Arsenic. Some other stuff. I’m a recovering chemist. If you’re not, you might assume you’re safe. I’m sorry. That’s not true. I didn’t work with most of these metals. Also, at the lab bench, I knew to protect myself. My naked exposure came in far more unexpected places. Places that are supposed to be safe. Where I didn’t feel the need to protect myself. Like the kitchen sink. Contaminants are in our water. Our food, even all of that healthy salmon I ate all those years…because there is mercury in our oceans. That healthy brown rice? That’s probably the “innocuous” source of arsenic. Our supplements. Fish oil seemed like a good idea. It’s probably not. Medicine? They used to preserve vaccines with mercury. That was a bad idea. The dentist? Those silver mercury fillings may have held up to chewing, but they leached mercury and silver into our bodies. And here’s the worst place of all. The safest place in the world, we would think…..in utero. Many moms unwittingly pass the toxic heavy metals in their system to their growing babies even as they take their prenatal vitamins, prepare for natural childbirth, and decorate the room. I’m so sorry to say we are not safe. Not until we know how to protect ourselves in a toxic world.
The Lancet agrees. Their Commission on Pollution and Health just came out with a report unequivocally stating that people are suffering from what we’re doing to the environment: “For decades, pollution and its harmful effects on people’s health, the environment, and the planet have been neglected both by Governments and the international development agenda. Yet, pollution is the largest environmental cause of disease and death in the world today, responsible for an estimated 9 million premature deaths.” They’re not even talking about the food and pharmaceutical system and all of the Better Living Through Chemistry – NOT!, we do. Even though protecting and cleaning up our environment is necessary, it’s not even sufficient anymore. Too many people are suffering from strange illnesses that have names but not clear sources or solutions. The answer to all of this won’t be pills. Sorry Doc.
Detox is the only way. The good news is that the power is in your hands. And it doesn’t even cost that much. Paleo diets won’t solve it. More good fats than bad ones is important but won’t fully arm you for this fight. Even oil-free vegan eating isn’t enough. Lucky for us, holistic answers are emerging now. You could get started by spending just $17.54, on Susan Koster’s book: Detox Diary. She’s survived more than most of us will face. And lived to tell about it. Thank goodness. Because we all need to know. My PhD from MIT in organometallic chemistry has never been more useful than in understanding all of this. I have no illusions; neither should you. An enormous shift in healthcare is coming. Get ahead of it. Spare yourself and your loved ones from unnecessary pain and suffering.
Our environmental and health issues are some of the biggest, most sweeping symptoms of our Empathy Deficit Disorder (EDD) as a society. The physical and emotional toxicity are linked. If we cared about our health, wouldn’t we get to the bottom of our issues rather than find ways to keep profiting off disease? If we cared about our bodies, why would we put things that aren’t really edible like MSG in our food (sorry, FDA, you got that dead wrong)? If we cared about children, wouldn’t pediatricians listen carefully to the devoted people watching every move they make – parents – to get to the bottom of the rise in chronic health issues for children (obesity, anxiety, depression, allergies, asthma, and more)? Sure, there’s been progress. Kids used to die without penicillin, etc. But given what we know today about the environmental hazards, what if….what if the pills we give to suppress symptoms are silencing bodily screams for help? They need our help to live clean in a dirty world. Don’t look away. There is nothing empathic about that.
If none of your family is suffering yet, that’s great news. You may be among the people whose bodies have evolved to clear toxins faster than the rest of us. The rest of us are canaries in the coal mine – the sentinels who warn of danger. Because our EDD is making our earth toxic more quickly than our genes can adjust. The danger won’t come with a flashing DANGER! MERCURY sign. It will come in a more traditional diagnosis. It will sound more like “gastrointestinal disorder”, “mental illness”, “adrenal fatigue”, “thyroid disorder”, “allergies”, or something else. It may be qualified as “idiopathic” because saying “I have no idea why this is happening to you” is really hard.
Don’t worry about me. I’m not sick…yet. And I’m on it. This is our year of learning self-care for good, including detoxing. After all, empathy is selfish first. It’s hard to care about anyone else if you’re in a crisis. I’ll keep you posted.
What about you? If you’re curious, here is where you can order a $90 hair test to do in the comfort of your own home. If you have ideas, please share. Let’s hope the world will be more ideal at some point. Right now, we live with toxicity we need to understand. Facing that truth is the foundation of empathic healthcare.