Roots show health
How healthy are you really? One way to find out is to have a hair follicle analysis.
For almost 80 years hair analysis has commonly examined a person’s hair samples for chemicals such as arsenic poisoning or illegal drugs, or provided DNA for paternity and criminal cases. As a scalp hair lives for five to six years, its selfcontained follicle, like a root or plant bulb, keeps a longer record of what passes through the body than blood or urine sampling.
Modern methods are sensitive enough to find traces of minerals/ metals/drugs that are a thousandth of a gram (microgram), or a nanogram (one billionth of a gram) or even a picogram (one thousandth of a nanogram) per gram of hair. It makes sense that hair follicle analysis is also now being used to assess the influences our environment is having on us.
It offers people of all ages a detailed personal wellness profile, so they can see what to target – what to avoid, or which minerals, vitamins and other nutrients they need more of. It could simply be to boost their immune system to beat winter lurgies, or to kick-start their journey towards a more optimised state. They can then correct any imbalance with food or supplementation.
Four hairs are plucked from the back of the head for examination, and the follicle is unaffected by hair colouring or how short the hair is. Analysis takes 15 minutes and provides a comprehensive personalised booklet of a person’s environmental influence in relation to 16 minerals and 16 vitamins, 23 amino acids, omegas (3, 6 and 9), 13 antioxidants and exposure to food additives, viruses, mould and spores, fungi and bacteria, parasites, toxic metals, radiation, chemicals, EMF and ELF, and food sensitivities. Each of these is presented in an easy to understand pie chart.
The actual analysis is done in Germany from an assessment centre that uses CE-approved bioresonance technologies, manufactured to EN ISO13485 standards, and which operates 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, from secure servers. It is overseen and supported by a team of doctors, bio-information specialists and computer engineers. People can then examine their results with their health professional, and discuss ways to address imbalances.
Hair analysis is now available at Health 2000 Broadtop. About five per cent of adults in New Zealand are deficient in vitamin D and another 27 per cent do not meet the recommended level of vitamin D in their blood.
Vitamin D is important for good bones. Everyone needs vitamin D to absorb calcium and phosphorus from their diet, minerals that are important for healthy bones.
Young children who don’t get enough vitamin D can develop rickets which causes bowed legs and knock knees. Adults who don’t get enough vitamin D can develop bone weakness and increased risk of fracture.
Some groups of the population are more at risk of vitamin D deficiency than others. These groups are:
All pregnant and breastfeeding women
All babies and young children from six months to five years old (unless they are having more than 500ml a day of infant formula) People aged 65 and over People who are not exposed to much sun – for example, those who cover their skin, or who are housebound or confined indoors for long periods
The sun is the most obvious source of vitamin D. Our bodies produce it whenever the sun shines on our skin. While the sun is seen less frequently in winter, the ultraviolet index is usually less than 3 (low) in the South Island in the coolest season and therefore less likely to cause skin damage.
You should still be able to accumulate enough sun exposure to maintain adequate levels of vitamin D with a daily walk or another form of outdoor physical activity, preferably about the middle of the day.
You can’t make vitamin D by sitting inside by a sunny window. UVB waves do not pass through glass.
You can augment your vitamin D levels by including in your diet foods that contain small amounts of vitamin D. They include oily fish (eg salmon, sardines, eel and warehou), milk and milk products, eggs and liver.
Some people with a high risk of vitamin D deficiency may need to take a vitamin D tablet. Talk to your GP or dietician if you are concerned.
Symptoms of vitamin D deficiency include bone pain, muscle aches, chronic fatigue and impaired balance.
Some dairy products are fortified with vitamin D though they alone do not contain enough to meet your vitamin D requirements.
Mushrooms are the only nonanimal source of vitamin D in food. Just make sure the mushrooms have been exposed to UV light.