Opinion is divided, but a majority of practitioners and researchers consider hair analysis to be a most reliable indicator of toxic mineral status. It is also relatively straightforward to obtain a sample.
Hair is one pathway by which the body rids itself of unwanted mineral waste and so the level of a particular mineral in hair gives a good guide to the level of that mineral in the body generally.
Hair grows slowly – about 1 millimetre per week – and so 25 millimetres of hair, taken from nearest the scalp reflects the mineral balance over the previous 6 months, a reasonable period of time – the hair is cut with scissors, not pulled out by the roots! Most hairdressers will assist in the collection of a suitable quantity of hair.
The hair sample is sent by post to a specialised laboratory and we receive the analysis within 2 weeks by e-mail. The results can be posted to parents or sent electronically together with an interpretive report.
Once we have the results we know whether there is a need to consider chelation (see below under ‘chelation’) and whether there are significant nutrient mineral deficiencies present; these can be ‘topped up’ by giving supplements tailored to the needs of a particular child.