Rx to Wellness, Uncategorized

Krill Oil or Fish Oil

Health and Wellness Associates

EHS Telehealth

 

Krill Oil or Fish Oil

krilloilvs

Looking to shed a few pounds, improve your skin or keep your brain sharp? You may want to consider taking krill oil. High in both omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants, the potential krill oil benefits are pretty impressive.

 

While I don’t personally consume krill oil, which comes from shellfish, as I follow a biblical diet, it has gained widespread popularity in recent years as a safe and healthy alternative to fish oil. The benefits of krill oil vs. fish oil are nearly identical, but krill oil is more bioavailable, more sustainable, and less likely to be contaminated by mercury or heavy metals.

 

So what is krill oil made from, how can it affect your health and should you be adding it to your daily routine? Let’s take a look.

 

What Is Krill Oil?

Krill oil is a supplement extracted from a species of Antarctic krill, which is a small, shrimp-like crustacean found in the Southern Ocean. Situated at the very bottom of the food chain, krill feed primarily on phytoplankton, or microscopic marine algae.

 

Krill oil contains a highly concentrated amount of omega-3 fatty acids, which have been linked to an extensive list of health benefits, from reduced inflammation to a decreased risk of chronic disease. (1) In addition to omega-3 fatty acids, krill oil also contains phospholipid-derived fatty acids as well as astaxanthin, a potent carotenoid revered for its antioxidant properties.

 

Take a look at any of the glowing krill oil reviews online and you’ll soon see the powerful effect that this supplement can have on health. Krill oil benefits include everything from strengthening bones and joints to boosting brain health and more.

 

  1. Fights Inflammation

Acute inflammation is a normal immune response that can help protect your body against foreign invaders. Chronic inflammation, on the other hand, is thought to contribute to a range of health conditions, including obesity, diabetes, heart disease and even cancer. (2)

 

Krill oil is high in omega-3 fatty acids like docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), which have been shown to have anti-inflammatory properties. (3) According to one study out of the University of Tehran in Iran, supplementing with omega-3 fatty acids for just eight weeks was able to significantly reduce levels of inflammatory markers in the blood. (4) Krill oil also contains astaxanthin, a natural pigment that can help fight the free radicals that cause chronic inflammation.

 

In addition to lowering the risk of chronic disease, the anti-inflammatory properties of krill oil could have far-reaching benefits that extend to nearly every aspect of health, from slowing aging to protecting against certain autoimmune conditions.

 

  1. Improves Heart Health

Whether you’re looking to drop your cholesterol levels or simply keep your heart in tip-top shape, krill oil may be able to help. Krill oil is jam-packed with omega-3 fatty acids, which have been linked to reduced inflammation, a decreased risk of heart disease and improvements in cardiovascular function. (5)

 

One 2015 study conducted at Danbury Hospital focused on measuring the krill oil benefits on heart health in people with diabetes. Researchers found that taking 1,000 milligrams of krill oil reduced several heart disease risk factors and even increased levels of beneficial HDL cholesterol. (6)

 

Meanwhile, other studies have shown that the omega-3 fatty acids found in krill oil can lower heart rate and blood pressure, decrease high triglycerides and reduce the risk of coronary heart disease. (7) Clearly, the omega-3 content plays a huge role in krill oil benefits for the heart.

 

  1. Keeps Skin Glowing

From acne to dermatitis, inflammation is at the root of many common skin conditions. One of the top benefits of krill oil for skin health is its content of omega-3 fatty acids, which have the ability to ease inflammation and keep your skin glowing.

 

In one study out of South Korea, supplementation with omega-3 fatty acids was found to reduce inflammatory acne by an impressive 42 percent. (8) Another animal study published in the Journal of Medical Investigation also showed that DHA and EPA, two types of omega-3 fatty acids found in krill oil, were able to block the production of a specific molecule involved in inflammation, aiding in the treatment of conditions like atopic dermatitis. (9)

 

Krill oil also contains astaxanthin, which may help improve skin health even more. According to one study in 2009, oral supplementation paired with topical application of astaxanthin reduced age spots and wrinkles while improving skin texture and moisture content. (10)

 

  1. Benefits Brain Health

The brain-boosting benefits of omega-3 fatty acids have been well-documented. Omega-3 fatty acids are believed to help reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety and even slow cognitive decline. (11, 12, 13) Some evidence has also found that omega-3 fatty acids may be beneficial in the treatment of disorders like ADHD, bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. (14, 15, 16)

 

There is less research on the cognitive effects of krill oil specifically, but several studies have turned up promising results. A 2013 animal study, for example, showed that krill oil enhanced cognition and exhibited antidepressant effects in rats. (17) Plus, another study showed that 12 weeks of supplementation with krill oil helped activate cognitive function in elderly men. (18)

 

  1. Supports Strong Bones and Joints

Aging can take a big toll on your body, especially in the bones and joints. Conditions like osteoporosis and arthritis become increasingly prevalent with age as you begin to lose bone density and cartilage, causing symptoms like pain, stiffness and an increased risk of fractures.

 

Some evidence suggests that the omega-3 fatty acids found in krill oil could help keep your bones and joints healthy and strong. Studies show that omega-3 fatty acids can help preserve bone density and reduce the inflammation that contributes to bone and joint pain. (19, 20) More research is needed to evaluate the effects of krill oil in particular on bone and joint health, but the omega-3 in krill oil benefits bone health.

 

  1. May Be Associated with Reduced Cancer Risk

As if you needed another reason to get in your daily dose of krill oil, some research shows that omega-3 fatty acids could be associated with a decreased risk of certain types of cancer.

 

In particular, studies have found that a higher intake of omega-3 fatty acids from supplementation or fish consumption may be associated with a reduced risk of prostate and breast cancer. (21, 22) A study published in the European Journal of Cancer Prevention also found that higher consumption of omega-3 fatty acids was associated with a lower risk of colorectal cancer. (23)

 

However, keep in mind that these studies show an association but don’t take into account other factors that may play a role. More research is needed to determine how krill oil and omega-3 fatty acid intake may directly affect cancer development.

 

  1. Aids in Weight Loss

 

Research shows that krill oil benefits weight loss, thanks to its omega-3 fatty acid content. In fact, studies have found that omega-3 fatty acids could help reduce appetite, kick up metabolism and rev up fat burning.

 

One study published in Appetite showed that consuming at least 1.3 grams of omega-3 fatty acids daily increased feelings of satiety up to two hours after a meal. (24) Other studies have found that omega-3 fatty acids can increase metabolism between 4 percent to 14 percent and amp up the amount of fat burned during exercise by up to 27 percent. (25, 26)

 

Krill Oil Dangers

The omega-3 fatty acids found in krill oil can slow blood clotting. If you take blood thinners like warfarin, discuss with your doctor before taking krill oil as it may interfere with the effectiveness of your medications. Additionally, you may need to discontinue taking krill oil at least two weeks before undergoing surgery to prevent adverse side effects.

 

If you’re allergic to crustaceans or seafood, you definitely want to skip krill oil. If you have a shellfish allergy, you should also hold off on taking krill oil until you talk to your doctor. Watch out for food allergy symptoms like abdominal pain, swelling, itching or hives, and report any adverse side effects to a trusted health care practitioner.

 

Common side effects of krill oil include heartburn, nausea, bad breath, indigestion, stomach discomfort, belching and a fishy aftertaste. These issues are especially common when you first start taking krill oil and decrease gradually over time. To minimize symptoms, opt for a high-quality, pharmaceutical grade krill oil, take it with a meal, start with a low dose and increase your intake slowly.

 

Krill Oil vs. Fish Oil

Both krill oil and fish oil are high in beneficial omega-3 fatty acids, including EPA and DHA. Therefore, the benefits of krill oil vs. fish oil for cholesterol, arthritis, skin health and other conditions are pretty comparable.

 

The main benefit of krill oil over fish oil is its absorbability. In fact, a multitude of studies have compared the bioavailability of fish oil vs. krill oil over the years. One large review out of Norway, for instance, compiled the results of 14 studies and showed that the DHA and EPA found in krill oil was more bioavailable than fish oil. (27)

 

Additionally, krill oil contains the added bonus of astaxanthin, a carotenoid found in a variety of foods with powerful antioxidant properties. Also known as “the king of carotenoids,” astaxanthin’s ability to fight free radicals is estimated to be 6,000 times higher than vitamin C, 550 times greater than vitamin E and 40 times higher than beta-carotene. (28)

 

Krill oil is also believed to be more pure, with lower levels of mercury and heavy metals than fish oil. Because krill consume algae, they are much less likely to accumulate high amounts of these contaminants than other types of fish.

 

Finally, krill oil is considered a more sustainable source of omega-3 fatty acids than fish oil. This is because Antarctic krill are one of the most abundant animal species on Earth. Opting for krill oil instead of fish oil can help ensure that you’re not contributing to unsustainable and harmful practices like overfishing.

 

Where to Find and How to Use Krill Oil

Krill oil is widely available at most pharmacies, health food stores and online retailers, usually right next to the fish oil and other omega-3 fatty acid supplements.

 

Be sure to buy from a trusted, reputable brand, and look for supplements that contain a high amount of EPA and DHA with minimal fillers or added ingredients to make sure you get the best krill oil supplement. Popular brands include Nature Made krill oil, MegaRed krill oil and Viva Labs krill oil.

 

When starting out, begin with a lower dose of krill oil and increase your intake slowly over the next few days to assess your tolerance and minimize any potential negative side effects.

 

Taking krill oil with a meal can also help reduce some of the negative symptoms like belching or fishy aftertaste. You can take it at any time of the day, but many people prefer taking it first thing in the morning alongside a healthy breakfast.

 

Krill Oil Dosage

Wondering how much take if you’re looking to maximize krill oil benefits? Most studies use a krill oil dosage between 1,000–3,000 milligrams daily, although this amount can vary widely based on the amount of EPA and DHA present in your supplement.

 

In general, however, the majority of health organizations seem to agree that lower doses of 250–500 milligrams of combined EPA and DHA can be beneficial for most health conditions. Be sure to look closely at the label of your supplement to check how much EPA and DHA it contains; even if a supplement contains 1,000 milligrams of krill oil, the amount of EPA and DHA may be much lower.

 

Additionally, be sure to start with a lower dose and work your way up. Not only does this ensure that you’re able to tolerate krill oil, but it can also reduce the risk of unpleasant symptoms like belching and nausea.

 

Krill Oil Recipes

If you’d prefer to skip the supplement and get your omega-3 fatty acid fix straight from the source, there are plenty of omega-3 foods available. Fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, anchovies, sardines and herring, as well as nuts and seeds, are all loaded with heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids.

 

Here are a few recipes to help squeeze in your daily dose of omega-3 fatty acids:

 

Coconut Yogurt Chia Seed Smoothie Bowl

Sardine Fish Cakes

Zesty Turkey Salad with Beans and Walnuts

Flaxseed Keto Wraps

Teriyaki Baked Salmon

History

Commercial krill fishing dates back to the 1970s, and krill oil was originally approved as a nutraceutical supplement by the FDA nearly 20 years ago, in 1999. Still, krill oil has only gained traction in recent years as a sustainable alternative to fish oil.

 

Antarctic krill are one of the most abundant animal species on Earth, with scientists estimating that there are nearly 500 million tons found in the Southern Ocean. Female krill can lay up to 10,000 eggs at a time and can lay eggs several times each season.

 

Krill are also incredibly resilient. During the winter when food is scarce, they manage to find other food sources, like the algae that grows underneath the surface of the ice, on the ocean floor or even on other animals. In tough times, krill can survive up to 200 days without food.

 

However, krill are also an essential part of our ecological community. Because many other species depend on krill to survive, organizations like the Convention for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources help sustain the delicate balance of the ocean’s ecosystem by setting krill catch limits to prevent overfishing. (29)

 

Precautions

Despite the many krill oil benefits, it may not be for everyone. If you have an allergy to seafood or crustaceans, for example, you should not take krill oil.

 

Krill oil may slow blood clotting and could interfere with certain medications, including blood thinners. If you’re taking a medication like warfarin, talk to your doctor before starting krill oil supplementation.

 

When first starting out, krill oil can cause side effects like nausea, belching, bad breath and dyspepsia. Make sure you take a high-quality supplement, take your pills with food and increase your dosage slowly to reduce your risk of these symptoms.

 

Final Thoughts on Krill Oil Benefits

Krill oil is extracted from a species of Antarctic krill, a shrimp-like crustacean found in abundance throughout the Southern Ocean.

In addition to being loaded with omega-3 fatty acids, krill oil is also high in astaxanthin and phospholipid-derived fatty acids, which help provide a host of krill oil benefits.

Krill oil benefits include reduced inflammation; improvements in heart, skin and brain health; stronger bones and joints; and increased weight loss. It may also be associated with a lower risk of certain types of cancer.

Compared to fish oil, krill oil is more absorbable, less likely to be contaminated by heavy metals and considered to be more sustainable.

For best results, aim to get in between 250–500 milligrams of combined EPA and DHA daily, whether it’s from krill oil, fish oil or whole food sources.

 

If you need help with any of your personal healthcare needs, or you are suffering with a medical condition that you do not think is reversable, please give us a call.

 

Health and Wellness Associates

Archived

Rachael Link

P Carrothers

Director of Personal Healthcare

Restorative and Preventative Medicine

312-972-9355

healthwellnessassociates@gmail.com

https://www.facebook.com/HealthAndWellnessAssociates/

 

 

 

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Health and Disease, Uncategorized

Healing Bells Palsy

bellspalsey

Healing Bell’s Palsy

Bell’s palsy is a relatively common condition that can show up in a myriad of ways. The face may droop in the eye, nose, or mouth area. It may droop on one side or on both sides. It can last only temporarily or for many years. At times it is very painful; other times there is no feeling at all. Sometimes Bell’s palsy affects more than just the face leaving doctors baffled. Oftentimes, when this happens, the person with the condition will be misdiagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS). Unfortunately, these labels are just names that have been given to a set of symptoms that are still a mystery to medical communities.

 

Bell’s Palsy is a viral issue; in particular, Bell’s palsy is caused by a specific undiscovered strain of the shingles virus. Some medical communities are not yet aware of this truth. If you or a loved one have suffered with or are currently suffering with Bell’s palsy, you now have the answer to what causes this condition and the information I am sharing with you here  can help you take steps toward recovery or preventing further health problems caused by the same virus.

 

The Shingles Virus

In medical research and science, only one variety of the shingles virus is known. If someone contracts a rash that is red and painful and it’s considered a textbook shingles rash, this is very easily diagnosed. However, there are 31 undiscovered varieties of shingles  and sometimes the virus does not manifest itself as a rash at all. Or someone may have a variety that develops a rash but they may also have other mystery symptoms that medical communities aren’t aware are caused by the shingles virus also. In some cases, the virus won’t result in a rash, but will show itself as Bell’s palsy. It’s also possible in a small amount of cases that someone with Bell’s Palsy will also experience a shingles rash, but in the majority of cases no rash will be present.

 

The variety of the shingles virus that causes Bell’s palsy probably will not be discovered for another 30 to 40 years. And if the current trend of medicine and research focusing only on genes continues, then the cause of Bell’s Palsy may never be discovered—ever. This, plus the fact that shingles is still only identified by it’s signature rash to most of the medical communities, is why patients do not hear about shingles when they visit their doctor or health practitioner with Bell’s palsy and many other symptoms. This particular variety of the virus tends to attack the trigeminal nerve or facial nerves, which are the nerves responsible for sensation in the face and motor functions such as biting and chewing, and the droopiness known as Bell’s palsy is not the only thing that the virus may cause.

 

Because the virus doesn’t always hit its mark, it can also affect the gums, teeth, and mouth, and even cause pain in the ear. The virus often hits different parts of nerves or misses the nerves to the face altogether. Many people go to the dentist to find a solution to their mouth pain, which resulted in pulling out teeth, only to find the pain did not improve and the teeth did not need to be removed at all. This is a classic example of how the shingles virus could be to blame. These days, dentists are being a bit more cautious when patients come in with gum, teeth, and mouth pain because they have learned from their past mistakes of disrupting the teeth when it was unnecessary.

 

When this variety of the shingles virus hits the nerves just right, it causes Bell’s palsy. These nerves are connected to the brain and there are so many of them that are very close together. When one nerve is affected, it can affect the ones neighboring it causing additional symptoms that can even resemble a stroke.

 

Healing from Bell’s Palsy

Below are some steps you can take not only to recover from Bell’s palsy, but also to prevent it from happening in the first place. Sometimes if you have Bell’s palsy once, it may come again because the virus in still active in a person’s system. It’s helpful to take these steps even if you aren’t experiencing Bell’s Palsy right now for this reason.

 

In addition, the shingles virus that causes Bell’s Palsy can cause many other symptoms and conditions if the virus is left unaddressed so if you are a loved one have had Bell’s Palsy or any of the symptoms and conditions listed below, it would be helpful to make the adjustments to your diet and supplements that I share in this article. Other symptoms shingles can cause include different kinds of rashes, neurological symptoms like twitching, tingling, burning, spasms, chronic migraines, and headaches, frozen shoulder, diabetic nerve pain, colitis, vaginal burning, TMJ, joint pain, muscle pain, neck pain, sciatic pain, sharp nerve pain, burning nerve pain, heart palpitations, and more. Some medical communities are completely unaware that these symptoms are a result of one or more of the many varieties of the shingles virus.

 

To heal from shingles, there are certain foods that need to be avoided along with certain foods and supplements that help to inhibit and destroy the virus. Let’s look at some of these now.

 

FOODS TO AVOID

Eggs are one of the most important foods to avoid because they are fuel for viruses. When you eat eggs, you are giving the shingles virus fuel to continue proliferating. Medical research is not yet aware that viruses eat, so you might hear health practitioners claim that viruses do not eat anything at all. This is a misconception and another classic medical blunder. Many trendy doctor diets of today tell you to avoid a potato, which is actually helpful for killing a shingles virus. Meanwhile they will recommend eating lots of eggs, which will actually feed the virus along with many other viruses responsible for so many different illnesses and symptoms. The truth is that eggs are the number one food that viruses feed on. If you want to heal Bell’s palsy, it would be helpful to stay away from eggs altogether.

 

Dairy and pork are other foods to stay away from, mainly because of their high fat content. I know high fat diets are popular these days, but this is detrimental to anyone with Bell’s palsy. When your diet is too fatty, the blood thickens and does not allow oxygen to get to the nerves. A fatty diet also inhibits the immune system from doing its job to fight the virus that’s attacking the nerves. It’s helpful to lower your fat intake whether you eat a plant based diet or you include animal foods daily. If you eat a vegan diet, reducing the amount of oils, nuts, seeds, coconut and avocado you eat is important. And if you eat animal protein, try to limit it to once a day or a few times a week and choose the highest quality lean protein sources you can. I know chicken is generally considered to be a lean meat, however chicken is best limited because it’s too high in fat for someone who is trying to fight Bell’s palsy. If you live in a place where eating animal foods is your only option, try to decrease the size of your meat portions and increase your vegetable intake along with bringing in any fruits you can throughout the day. Since fruit is unfairly feared more than ever before today, hearing this may go against a trendy diet belief system that you have adopted. If this is the case, please understand that it’s what will kill off the virus—the cause of Bell’s palsy—and help you to recover your health that matters. When you know the true cause of your symptoms and conditions, your diet should then be adjusted to address it, regardless of what kind of diet belief system you subscribe to.

 

FOODS TO INCLUDE

The good news is you have a lot of secret antiviral weapons in foods that will help you heal from and prevent Bell’s palsy. Fruit is the first food to focus on. Any fruit you eat will help fight the shingles virus because the phytochemicals in fruit are antiviral. Potatoes are another secret weapon to include in your diet. Potatoes are loaded with an extremely potent bioactive L-lysine that inhibits and reduces viral activity. It’s also helpful to include plenty of leafy greens like red leaf lettuce and romaine daily. Eat a cucumber and tomato salad with cilantro, parsley, sage, and rosemary. Yes, tomato. You should not be afraid of a fresh tomato no matter what you hear out there. If you believe that tomatoes are not healthy for you, you’re being misled. Garlic and onion are perfect antivirals to defend you against the shingles virus, as are cumin and turmeric. Drinking fresh pure celery juice is a great way to send healthy mineral salts to your nerve endings. Red clover blossom tea is a great tea to include because of its potent antiviral properties

It’s also important to remove the heavy metals from your body and brain when you have Bell’s palsy. The shingles virus, and all viruses, feed on heavy metals like copper, mercury, aluminum, lead, nickel, steel, and more. By reducing the amount of heavy metals in your body, the shingles virus will have less fuel to proliferate and cause symptoms like Bell’s palsy and others. . These foods are Hawaiian Spirulina, Barley Grass Juice Extract, Atlantic dulse, wild blueberries, and cilantro.

Include these five foods within a 24 hour period of each other to safely and properly remove heavy metals from your body. This is the most effective heavy metal detox protocol that exists. You can contact us for more ways to detox from heavy metals.

While we are discussing heavy metals, I want to share an important truth about mercury fillings. Many people want to get their mercury amalgams removed, but you should know that if you get all your mercury fillings removed at once this could be dangerous because it will release mercury into your bloodstream that wasn’t causing a problem before. The shingles virus will then have a feeding frenzy on mercury and cause more issues. This could result in Bell’s palsy developing. If you are determined to take out your mercury fillings because one is broken or falling apart, be careful to take them out one at a time with many months or more between each removal.

SUPPLEMENTS FOR BELL’S PALSY

There are many supplements that need to be taken to build up your system again Bells palsy and MS.  Contact us so we can go over which ones you should and possibly should not take, based on other medications and conditions you may have.

Moving Forward

Taking these steps that I have described above can be helpful to heal from Bell’s palsy that first occurred years ago, Bell’s palsy that is current or recent, and even to prevent it from happening altogether. It will also help to minimize, prevent or recover from other symptoms caused by shingles. If you feel overwhelmed by making changes to your diet and supplementation, take it one step at a time and keep moving forward. Over time, try to incorporate as many of these antiviral foods as you can. I stand behind you on this healing journey and I am with you every step of the way. Remember that understanding the root cause of Bell’s palsy is half the battle, so you are now that much closer to true healing. We are here to be with you through all these steps.

Health and Wellness Associates

Archived

P Carrothers

Dir of Personal Healthcare Plans

Preventative and Restorative Medicine

312-972-9355 (WELL)

 

Healthwellnessassociates@gmail.com

https://www.facebook.com/HealthAndWellnessAssociates/

 

Lifestyle, Uncategorized

On The Go?

onthego

Do you know that terrible feeling when anxiety gets the best of you? Your heart starts to race and sink, palms get sweaty, lump forms in your throat… and your mind just WON’T STOP?

With our busy schedules and stress-packed lives, it’s no wonder we feel like that often… how are you supposed to relax and unwind when you’re always on the go and in a rush?

Your wish is to ease anxiety and make the racing thoughts STOP so you can finally live in peace

You are not alone. Many people can’t relax, can’t stop moving their feet when they are sitting.  People can’t stop thinking when they are sleeping.  People who cannot sit down for any length of time and just relax.  People who go on vacation and have to keep doing and doing and doing. People who are always doing things even though they admit they felt burned out. Being nervous, stressed, and lack of rest will keep making things worse. But there is a remedy!

The Healthcare Professionals here at Health and Wellness Associates are here to help you with this problem.  This could be a heavy metals problem or a digestive problem.  Yes, a chemical problem too.

Many chemicals have been put through your body and it does take its toll.  We can help you find out what it is and what to do about it.  Do Not Take More Chemicals, meaning a prescription to cure a chemical problem.

Please share with family and loved ones.

 

Health and Wellness Associates

Archived

312-972-Well

Rx to Wellness, Uncategorized

Shilajit Supplement Found to Contain High Levels of Lead and Arsenic

shilatjsupreme

 

Ayurvedic shilajit supplement found to contain alarmingly high levels of LEAD and ARSENIC heavy metals

 

Recent tests in my internationally accredited science laboratory (ISO 17025 accreditation, the “gold standard” of analytical excellence) revealed a shilajit supplement to contain an astonishing 2,700+ ppb (parts per billion) of lead, a toxic heavy metal linked to cognitive damage.

 

This is the same toxic heavy metal found in the Flint, Michigan water supply which resulted in government scientists being charged with felony crimes. The EPA’s limit on lead in the water supply is 15 ppb. The shilajit product we tested was over 180 times higher.

 

The same shilajit supplement was also found to contain over 600 ppb of arsenic, another toxic heavy metal. Alarmingly, it was also found to contain these concentrations of yet more elements and metals that may be toxic at high concentrations:

 

Copper: 4,200+ ppb

Nickel: 4,900+ ppb

Aluminum: 1,380,747 ppb (or 1,380 parts per million)

 

According to the heavy metals grading scale I developed and published at Low Heavy Metals Verified, this concentration of lead would earn this shilajit supplement an “F” grade.

 

As a result of the metals composition found in shilajit, I am issuing a consumer alert to avoid shilajit supplements unless you know for certain that they are significantly clean of toxic heavy metals. (Grade “A” or better at LowHeavyMetalsVerified.org.)

 

Personally, not only would I never eat anything containing 2700+ ppb of lead, I would never sell such a supplement in the first place. In my opinion as a scientist, author and superfood formulator, it is highly unethical to sell supplements to the public when they contain such high levels of lead, copper, arsenic, nickel and aluminum.

 

What is shilajit?

 

Shilajit is a black, fulvic acid-rich mineral substance that’s been used in Ayurvedic medicine for thousands of years. It’s currently sold as an Ayurvedic dietary supplement, along with some rather dicey claims that it promotes sexual function, brain function, immune function and even detoxification. It is difficult to fathom how shilajit can be claimed to be so healing when it is contaminated with such high concentrations of heavy metals and toxic elements.

 

Lead, of course, damages cognitive function and harms neurodevelopment in children. It is exhaustively linked to lowered IQ in humans, making it very difficult to grasp how a product with such high concentrations of lead could claim to support “brain function.”

 

And here’s a link to the Healthforce Shilajit web page which describes this dietary supplement as a “thick, resinous material that oozed out of cracks in the … cliffs” and was eaten by monkeys. That same page explains that the metals and elements found in shilajit are “highly bioavailable minerals.” (Just what I wanted for Christmas… highly bioavailable lead, arsenic, nickel and aluminum!)

 

Other claims on the website seem to wildly contradict the known toxic effects of the heavy metals the product contains. For example, the product is claimed to “supports memory, learning, and healthy brain function” even though lead is known to damage memory, learning and healthy brain function.

 

Perhaps most shockingly, the Healthforce web page explains: “We test our shilajit for identity, pesticides, microbials, heavy metals, irradiation, GMOs, solvent residues, and fulvic acid content to assure the high level of purity and potency that our customers deserve.” This means, quite obviously, that the Healthforce company is aware of the lead, arsenic, aluminum and other potentially harmful elements found in their shilajit product, but they continue to sell it anyway.

 

That’s truly shocking to me. Healthforce is bluntly admitting that even though they test their products for heavy metals, they do not stop selling them when concerning high levels of those heavy metals are found in their products. So what, exactly, is the point of testing them in the first place? Do they test them just so they can say on their website that “we tested for heavy metals?”

 

For the record, shilajit supplements have been banned in Canada for the very reason you might suspect: The substance is so high in heavy metals that Health Canada has long since determined it is too dangerous for human consumption.

 

Canada’s ban on shilajit due to toxic levels of lead and other heavy metals

 

Via this Canadian government archive page:

 

Health Canada is warning consumers not to use certain Ayurvedic medicinal products because they contain high levels of heavy metals such as lead, mercury and/or arsenic. Health Canada is taking action to remove these products from the market and to prevent further importation into Canada.

 

Ayurvedic medicinal products are used in traditional Indian healing and are often imported from India. According to the principles of Ayurvedic medicine, heavy metals may be used because of their reputed therapeutic properties. However, improper manufacturing processes may result in dangerously high levels of heavy metals remaining in the final product.

 

Heavy metals pose a particular health risk because they may accumulate in vital organs. Children are most susceptible to the toxic effects of heavy metal poisoning. For example, arsenic poisoning can cause nausea, abdominal pain, vomiting, muscle cramps, heart abnormalities, liver damage, anaemia and reduced motor nerve function. Lead poisoning can cause weight loss, insomnia, dizziness, swelling of the brain and paralysis. Mercury poisoning can cause tremors, insomnia, memory loss, slowed sensory and motor nerve function, and reduced mental function.

 

As a precaution, Health Canada advises Canadians not to use any other Karela, Safi, Maha Sudarshan Churna, Yograj Guggul, Sudarshan or Shilajit products unless they have the required market authorization.

 

Testing protocol

 

As you know if you’ve followed my work for very long, I am the founder and lab science director at CWC Labs. There, I’ve spent several years pioneering heavy metals research into foods and dietary supplements through ICP-MS instrumentation. (The U.S. Patent Office has just awarded me two ICP-MS-related patents, by the way, which have been pending for almost three years. They will be published by the government in just a few weeks.)

 

My laboratory has also been awarded this Certificate of Excellence for outstanding analytical work, achieving “100% acceptable data” while producing analysis data for water samples that was off by only 0.3 ppb (0.0003 ppm). I’m also the author of the widely acclaimed book Food Forensics, which achieved the Amazon.com #1 Best selling SCIENCE book ranking before it was even launched.

 

To test this shilajit supplement, I used our accredited in-house method, based on EPA 200.8, a published scientific method for elemental analysis. The internal standard I mapped to lead for this determination was Bismuth-209, widely known to be the heaviest stable nucleus in existence, with a half life that is more than a billion times longer than the age of our universe.

 

Today, I am routinely testing dietary supplements for many commercial customers. Since launching this commercial testing service at CWC Labs, I have only seen one health product with a more disturbing heavy metals profile than this shilajit dietary supplement: powdered zeolite (which is usually extremely high in lead and aluminum, beyond anything else in the entire industry).

 

How can it “detox” you when it’s so high in toxic elements?

 

Over the years of being involved in the raw food industry, veganism, nutrition and forensic laboratory science, I have come to reluctantly discover that many companies that manufacture and sell dietary supplements are run by people who are scientifically illiterate.

 

You’d be amazed to learn just how many so-called “detox supplements” are actually loaded with toxic heavy metals. It’s beyond belief, and if you ran a world-class laboratory like I do, you’d be shaking your head in amazement at the number of “detox” supplements that still exist in the marketplace today, often sold with what can only be called a degree of carnival hucksterism.

 

Shilajit is no exception. It’s been found to contain such high concentrations of toxic lead that Canada banned shilajit supplements, citing high lead content as a threat to public safety. Yet here in the United States, many of the very same people who wouldn’t dare eat GMOs or swallow pesticides are literally eating shilajit (or other similar substances) by the spoonful. (Yes, you can scratch your own head in wonderment at all this…)

 

My official shilajit health warnings

 

WARNING #1) Shilajit supplements may contain very high levels of toxic heavy metals. In fact, many medicinal herbs from India and China (both for Ayurvedic medicine and Traditional Chinese Medicine) are very heavily contaminated with lead and other toxic elements. See my recent coverage of the FDA’s recall on turmeric for another example.

 

WARNING #2) Some companies that sell shilajit have a long history of selling other dietary products containing very high levels of toxic heavy metals. As you’ve seen in this article, even when some companies are fully aware of the high heavy metals their products contain, they are willing to keep selling them anyway!

 

WARNING #3) Do not trust any shilajit product unless you have it tested by a competent, accredited laboratory. If you want my laboratory to test products for you, you may purchase these heavy metals test kits to have us test your dietary supplements, soils, water or even your own hair composition. (Our test is conducted via ICP-MS and analyzes your sample for 20 elements, including the toxic heavy metals.)

 

Finally, do not eat rocks or inorganic minerals that might ooze out from between rocks. I know it sounds almost stupid to say “don’t eat rocks,” but you’d be amazed how many products I’ve seen in the industry which are basically just ground up rocks. Nearly all cheap calcium supplements, for example, are just compressed, powdered oyster shells or cheap calcium sources often contaminated with lead. If you’re taking cheap, low-grade calcium supplements, you are actually causing yourself serious health damage (which is why cheap calcium pills are linked to serious health problems).

 

As I’ve warned people again and again, get your minerals from living plants wherever possible, not from rocks or rock derivatives. And do not believe the quack science of the fringe supplement pushers who claim things like “lead is a mineral, so it’s good for you!” There’s no such thing as healthy lead, by the way. For decades, they put it into gasoline to improve engine performance. What we got as a result is nationwide cognitive decline and a huge rise in mental retardation. Go figure…

 

And yes, for the record, there are great many people in the so-called “raw food” movement who are mentally deranged and seriously brain damaged from heavy metals, recreational drugs or a bizarre combination of the two. If they tell you to eat something because it’s amazing, awesome, ancient or popular, think twice about what you’re doing. If you consume shilajit, you’re basically licking nasty black crap out of the side of a cliff like a bunch of monkeys. You’d be better off growing sunflower sprouts in clean water enhanced with ocean minerals, quite frankly.

 

Health and Wellness Associates

Mike Adams

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