In the book, “The Puzzle of Autism: Putting It All Together“ (Yasko) I presented the hypothesis that chronic viral and bacterial organisms in our bodies are able to create additional havoc in your system by acting as ”accomplices” to heavy metals, and aiding in their retention in the body. This adds yet another layer of complication to the story and again reiterates the fact that the health conditions we face today are multifactorial and complex in nature.
While the bacteria staphylococci are especially prone to retaining aluminum, it is likely that other bacteria also can do so. Aluminum may increase the propensity for bacteria to form a biofilm, which is an additional survival mechanism used by bacteria to hide in the body in a chronic fashion. Bacterial infection promotes accumulation and retention of heavy metals in the body, which contributes to oxidative stress and impairs neurotransmitter formation. Metals may be retained in the body through several mechanisms.
The elimination of pathogenic gastrointestinal flora and excretion of the metals they retain, therefore, may be essential for proper function of the biochemical pathways in the body, along with maintenance of proper balance among the organisms that should be present in the gastrointestinal tract.
“Aluminum is a well-documented and undisputed neurotoxin that is associated with cognitive, psychological, and motor abnormalities. Both clinical observation and animal experiments have documented neurotoxicity from excess brain exposure to aluminum, which has been found in elevated levels in the brains of patients with Parkinsonism, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), and Alzheimer-type dementia. Aluminum induces encephalopathy and causes neuroanatomical and neurochemical changes in the brain, including neurofilament disturbances followed by nerve cell loss. Primate studies have provided evidence of aluminum’s ability to induce seizures” (Yasko and Mullan, Autism Science Digest).
In addition to aluminum toxicity, the presence of lead, arsenic, mercury and cadmium have been known to have adverse biological effects on humans since ancient times. Metals, particularly heavy metals such as lead, cadmium and arsenic constitute significant potential threats to human health in both occupational and environmental settings. Arsenic is clearly carcinogenic and cadmium is now being recognized as a contributor to osteoporosis. Lead averages 1000 times higher concentration in all human bones tested anywhere on earth today than four centuries ago. During the past three decades epidemiologic studies have demonstrated inverse associations between blood lead concentrations and children’s IQs at successively lower lead concentrations (Rogan, New England J Med). In response, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has repeatedly lowered its definition of an elevated blood lead concentration, which now stands at 10 µg per deciliter (0.483 µmol per liter). The fact that associations are seen at these low lead concentrations implies that there is no safe level of lead. Mercury is neurotoxic even at the relatively low levels of exposure seen in dentists’ offices. Many vaccines continue to include mercury as an ingredient. Coal-fired power plants alone release over 50 tons of mercury into the air annually just from burning coal for our electric power (Johnson, Chem Eng News).
My experience has been that as infections are eliminated from the system we see a release of stored metals from the body. The success of this approach supports the premise that these chronic infections have been efficiently binding toxic metals in the body where no chelating agent (metal binding agent) seems to be able to effectively remove them. With the elimination of chronic bacteria, viruses and heavy metals, real improvements in health and wellness can be achieved.