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Howard's End: A Little Light Metal

"You are what you eat" has been the catch-cry of some health professionals for decades. But now, more and more scientists are saying that we all need to know more about the food we eat because some foods can effect behaviour and we could be wasting money on unnecessary vitamin supplements. John Howard has been researching and has filed this report.

Copper, Magnesium, Zinc, Iron, Boron, Potassium, Chromium and Vanadium, are not things we think about every day, but scientists are saying that while vitamins are very important, minerals are also vital for our overall health - perhaps more so.

They say we all need to know whether these trace minerals in our body, which form part of our food-intake and keep us healthy, are balanced - because it can effect our behaviour.

Would you swim in a pool or take a spa bath if you knew the water wasn't as balanced and healthy as it could be; would you drink water if you knew it wasn't as pure as possible; would you eat processed vegetables if you knew that many of the vital minerals and vitamins had been destroyed while processing?

Would you eat certain types of foods, and limit others, if you knew which could help you stay healthier?

These are just some of the questions to which scientists are saying each of us ought to know the answers.

For example, if you want to start your car quickly then you use an acid battery, but if you want prolonged light such as from a torch, you use alkaline batteries.

And so it is with our body - the right acid and alkaline levels in balance, to maintain proper health and to get the desired result.

Dr Alex Schauss, a noted American author and nutritional expert, tells the story of a 9-year-old boy who was brought to his clinic three years ago. The boy had been charged with attempted murder, but his criminal record began at aged 6.

He had burned animals, shot at people's houses and beat up other youngsters. The police said he would be a lifetime criminal, a Charles Manson-type psychotic.

He was on six psychiatric drugs and had earlier been expelled from school after he had beaten-up a ten-year-old girl. Counselling alone had not helped.

Dr Schauss did a hair mineral analysis and discovered the boys copper levels were off the charts. He added supplemental zinc to the boys diet which helped reduce the excess copper and two weeks later further analysis revealed that his excess copper levels had been reduced and his behaviour had started to improve.

It was later discovered that the boy had regularly been given only coffee for breakfast, a hamburger for lunch and a pizza for dinner.

There have been some relapses in behaviour but along with new counselling, the boy is now on his way to becoming a model citizen.

And another example. Using an electron paramagnetic resonance spectrometer on bone samples, scientists have discovered that it is just two atoms of copper which bonds the apatite crystals to the collagen in bone - the loss of the apatite crystals from the collagen is said to explain the cause of the degenerating disease, osteoporosis.

In tests, they found that the bonding sites in the bone were little recesses into which would fit only two atoms of iron, or copper, or zinc, or six of beryllium but, importantly, only copper had an electron resonance of its own and both the apatite and the collagen had exactly the same electron resonance with copper.

It was a peg and hole with two atoms of copper as the bonding agent much the same as a carpenter uses a piece of wood as a dowel to make furniture joints.

Space science programs in both Russia and the U.S. have also shown that astronauts get osteoporosis despite working out so hard in a twelve week mission that their muscles grew, but bone loss still reached 6.8 percent - because normal earth gravity stress signals, which helps bone to grow, were not evident in space

Many minerals are referred to as trace minerals, which might make it seem as though they are of little importance, but nothing could be further from the truth.

Minerals and their deficiencies have been implicated in a wide range of off-balance health conditions where the body is so deficient of them, and has become so acidic, that it's almost impossible for the complex biochemical and enzyme processes needed for good health to take place.

For example, cigarette smoke is rich in Cadmium (the blue colour in the smoke). Low zinc/high cadmium ratios are implicated in learning disabilities. Therefore, Zinc is needed to balance Cadmium.

Scientists say that children who do poorly on achievement tests tend to have low iron levels. These children also display disruptive, impulsive and irritable behaviour in the classroom.

But most of these children's mineral imbalances seem to go undiagnosed and instead, they are medicated with drugs.

The type of mineral - acid or alkaline - is so important in nature, that the hydrangea flower will be either blue or pink depending whether the soil is acidic or alkaline.

And when you buy food there is no guarantee that the soil in which it is grown might be mineral deficient which can cause the vegetables, for instance, to also be mineral deficient.

There are simple tests which you can do at home to establish whether your family is in mineral balance but most of us are presently playing a form of Russian roulette with our health.

When the mineral balances in the body are off, such as being too acidic, it is logical that your health will be off. This then sets up an internal environment that becomes a new playground for opportunistic bugs, bacteria, viruses and fungus.

Enzymes that are constructive can become destructive and oxygen delivery to cells can also suffer when the body is out of balance.

We really need to start thinking more about what we are and what foods we eat. Perhaps we don't need to be spending billions of dollars globally on vitamin pills.

Surely, the first step we can take is to actually find out, through a simple home test, whether our family is mineral-balanced and in-sync with nature - as we were intended to be.

Feedback: jhoward@minidata.co.nz


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