Hair Tissue Mineral Analysis (HTMA)
Hair Tissue Mineral Analysis (HTMA ) is a safe and non-invasive pathology test. It measures the levels and comparative ratios of nutrient and toxic minerals found in hair. HTMA is regarded by many doctors, naturopaths, and nutritionists as one of the most valuable screening tools available in everyday and preventative health care.
Why test for minerals?
Minerals are essential for growth, healing, vitality, and well-being. They reinforce bones and teeth, maintain the body’s pH and water balance, and regulate nerve activity, muscle contractions, energy production, and enzyme reactions. They are the basic “spark plugs” of life.
Ideally, we should get all the minerals we need from a balanced diet. Unfortunately, modern life has made this virtually impossible. Modern farming techniques, fertilizers, and nutritionally depleted soils reduce the mineral content of our food. Environmental pollutants, chemical food additives, and stressful lifestyles also have a detrimental effect on our nutritional status. HTMS is a non-intrusive health screening tool used to measure your body’s mineral status. This data can highlight potential health problems and help you to treat them through a nutritional program tailored to your health needs
Why Test Hair Tissue
Hair is a body tissue made up of mostly dead, keratinised cells that are fused together. The shaft of the hair is the portion that projects from the skin. The root of the hair, below the skin’s surface, contains living matrix cells from which the hair grows. Matrix cells depend on blood supply for nourishment and growth. As they grow and divide, minerals are keratinised into the growing hair shaft, creating a permanent record of metabolic activity and exposure to toxic elements. Mineral concentrations in the hair are a reliable indicator of mineral stores in the whole body. If your health, diet, or environment has created a mineral imbalance or toxic mineral excess, it will be recorded in the hair shaft. Research has shown that hair mineral levels reflect stored mineral levels in other body tissues.
Why Not Test Blood?
Measuring the mineral content of blood is a good indication of the minerals being transported around the body. However, it cannot accurately measure the minerals stored in tissue. Often, the body’s homeostatic mechanisms maintain proper serum mineral concentrations at the expense of tissue concentrations. Unfortunately, correct serum levels can mask both mineral excesses and deficiencies in tissue. For example:
- about 30-40 days after acute lead poisoning, elevated serum lead levels may be undetectable. This is because the body removes lead from the blood as a protective measure and deposits it into tissues.
Causes of Mineral Imbalances
- Improper eating habits: Fad diets and diets high in refined carbohydrates, sugars, salt, alcohol, and saturated fats can lead to mineral deficiencies and excesses. Even the mineral content of a healthy diet can be deficient if foods are grown on nutrient-poor land.
- Medications: Many medications deplete the body’s store of nutrient minerals and can increase levels of toxic minerals. Medications such as diuretics, the oral contraceptive pill, antacids, and aspirin can all cause vitamin and mineral deficiencies.
- Genetic and individual factors: A predisposition towards certain mineral imbalances, deficiencies, and excesses can be inherited from parents. Certain individuals can also inherit an abnormal need for particular nutrients to maintain good health.
- Nutritional supplements: Supplements can also lead to mineral excesses and deficiencies. For example, excess calcium intake can cause phosphorus and magnesium deficiencies. Continued magnesium deficiency increases sodium levels and eventually causes vitamin A deficiency.
Conditions Affected with Mineral Imbalances
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Cardiac conditions
- Dental problems
- Digestive problems
- Hair loss and poor nails
- High blood pressure
- Hormone imbalance
- Immune impairment
- Learning difficulties
- Macular degeneration
- Memory problems
- Mood swings
- Muscle cramps
- Prostate disorders
- Skin problems
- Thyroid disorders
- Wounds healing poorly
Many health conditions are aggravated by mineral imbalances and toxic metal excesses, including cardiovascular disease, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, migraines, learning difficulties and hyperactivity in children. Consequently, we need to test and monitor our nutritional status more than ever.
Benefits of HTMA
- Safe, scientific, non-invasive pathology test sent to your home for you to provide sample (detailed instructions included).
- Reliable data on more than 35 nutrient and toxic minerals, and over 25 important mineral ratios.
- Valuable health information often not revealed in standard blood and urine tests.
- Discovery of nutrient mineral imbalances or toxic mineral excesses that may be affecting your health.
- Personalized patient and doctor interpretive test reports that assess your current mineral status, highlight areas of concern and recommend dietary changes and supplements for improved health and well being.
Personalized and “user friendly” reports that are easy to read, comprehensive and incorporate the latest developments in nutritional therapeutics are provided. The reports contain a wealth of clinical data which, when interpreted correctly, can provide an indication of nutrient imbalances and mineral toxicity. ICL’s advanced reports are designed to shed light on the patient’s current health status, identify potential areas of concern and direct dietary and supplemental measures to improve patient health.
Aquarian Laboratories are the leading service provider of Hair Tissue Mineral Analysis (HTMA) Pathology in Australia. They provide reliable and comprehensive clinical data in their HTMA reporting. All hair tissue samples are analysed using state of the art techniques by Trace Elements Inc, a US federally licensed and certified clinical laboratory specialising in hair tissue mineral analysis.
Hair Mineral Test Level 1
11 Minerals: Boron (B), Calcium (Ca), Chromium (Cr), Cobalt (Co), Copper (Cu), Iron (Fe), Magnesium (Mg), Manganese (Mn), Molybdenum (Mo), Vanadium (V), Zinc (Zn).
5 Toxic Elements
Aluminium (Al), Arsenic (As), Cadmium (Cd), Lead (Pb), Mercury (Hg).
Hair Mineral Test Level 2
21 Minerals: Barium (Ba), Boron (B), Calcium (Ca), Chromium (Cr), Cobalt (Co), Copper (Cu), Iodine (I), Iron (Fe), Lithium Li), Magnesium (Mg), Manganese (Mn), Molybdenum (Mo), Phosphorus (P), Potasium (K), Selenium Se), Sodium (Na), Strontium (Sr), Sulfur (S), Vanadium (V), Zinc (Zn), Zirconium (Zr).
15 Toxic Elements
Aluminium (Al), Antimony (Sb), Arsenic (As), Beryllium (Be), Bismuth (Bi), Cadmium (Cd), Lead (Pb), Mercury (Hg), Nickel (Ni), Platinum (Pt), Thallium (Ti), Thorium (Th), Tin (SN), Tungsten (W), Uranium (U)