Hair Tissue Mineral Analysis
Tissue mineral analysis determines the relationship between the minerals in our body. It is the basis for Dr Eck's research and for all of Nutritional Balancing Science at this time. When interpreted correctly, this test can assess the stress response of the body, the oxidation type, and many other facts.
Insights from hair
Hair mineral content reflects the mineral makeup of the rest of the body, but as the concentrations are often significantly greater it is a more reliable and informative method of analysis. Furthermore, excretion of toxic substances, including heavy metals, also occurs in the hair, thus trace amounts that are not as readily detectable in other tissues and organs may be identified by hair analysis.
Analysis is typically carried out using inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometers these days. They have a very high sensitivity, detecting up to one part per trillion, and are predominantly used in toxicology and environmental contamination.
While the mineral content of hair can be assessed on the individual elements and their concentrations, and significant information can be derived from this on its own, this approach ignores the important interactions that exist between minerals and their relative concentrations, as first described by Dr William Albrecht. From these mineral ratios, understanding of the body's response to stress, glandular and organ functionality can be deduced. Mental and emotional predisposition can also be elucidated from these element relationships and a corrective nutritional supplementation can be advised.
Using the knowledge
Employing Dr Eck's insights of stress theory and metabolic type in correlation to the mineral system, it is possible to provide guidance based on optimum values rather than the more commonly used reference ranges. These are standard deviation ranges derived in large part from people who are ill, being treated medically, and therefore showing imbalances that are not reflective of the norm of healthy individuals. It is therefore not the reference used here.
Full analysis is based on the appreciation of the interelationships of mineral electrolytes and seeking to address the balance on an individual basis.
What is measured?
Various macro and trace minerals (necessary for normal bodily function) and toxic metals are measured. These include: