Is It Safe to Detox Children? What Parents Need to Know…

Is It Safe to Detox Children? What Parents Need to Know…

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As a parent myself, I get it.

We are often concerned about our children’s health and well-being. It’s common to wonder how we can help them better reach their goals, grow to be strong and healthy, and be an impactful individual in this modern world.

Unfortunately, some of us may start to notice that our children develop chronic behavioral issues, skin rashes, digestive issues, inability to focus, or other issues. This may lead some of us to wonder if they are full of toxins.

With the plethora of information out there, we may then wonder if we need to help them with detoxification.

There’s no doubt that our children are exposed to countless environmental toxins, but is detoxing with a binder, potent herbal remedies, or hard-hitting protocols the solution?

In this blog post, we’ll explore the potential benefits and dangers of detoxing for children. There are some safe alternatives to strong detox protocols for parents who want to support their children’s health, including but not limited to supporting their mineral levels with a mineral-rich diet – the key here though is to “test, don’t guess” what’s going on with their nutrient levels with a hair mineral test (HTMA).

This is an image of a quote that says "'Test, don't guess' what's going on with your child's nutritional status with a hair mineral test (HTMA)."

When Detox Goes Wrong...

Before diving into this topic, I’d like to share a personal story about detox.

As a functional health practitioner, I am often helping parents figure out what in the world is going on with their children. Why the out-of-control behavior issues? Why are they getting sick all the time? Why are they getting a lot of cavities?

I had a client, let’s call her Sarah, who was concerned about her son’s temper tantrums and frequent illness. She read online that heavy metal toxicity could be the cause, so she started him on a detox program without proper guidance or testing.

She specifically thought that he had a copper toxicity issue based on his symptoms. So, she started him on a zeolite binder.

Zeolite is an excellent natural binder that I’ll sometimes use with certain clients. With that being said though, it is absolutely NOT appropriate for everyone. For instance, someone who already has a chronic low copper level can further deplete their copper level since zeolites bind to copper and remove that copper from the body.

Quote explaining that zeolite is a great binder but not if you have a low copper level

Unfortunately, Sarah’s detox strategies led to harmful effects on her son’s health. He experienced severe symptoms like fatigue, headaches, and digestive issues. After running a hair mineral test on her son’s hair, we discovered that he was actually chronically LOW in copper, and by taking the zeolite binder, his copper plummeted even further and he got worse.

MUCH worse.

Sarah was just trying to do what she thought was best for her son. I get it. I’ve been there!

So, what happened to Sarah’s son?

Well, I developed a mineral-balancing protocol for him that helped to balance the minerals that were either very high or low within his body: calcium, magnesium, sodium, potassium, copper, and zinc.

Within a short period of time, his extreme behavior issues settled down! He was finally more chill and was able to focus more on his tasks at home.

They finally had peace in their home after years of  just trying to survive.

As Sarah painfully learned, it’s crucial to understand that the health pillars need to be followed before attempting any sort of detox – for adults and kids. I’ll share what those health pillars are in a separate blog.

While you’re working on those health pillars for your family, it’s important to get a hair mineral test (HTMA test) to see what’s going on within your children’s bodies so that they can optimally function.

An HTMA is ordered by a health practitioner who has an account with specialized labs. It is not a blood test, rather it is a non-invasive test that analyzes the mineral content of the hair AND heavy metals that are present. It is the #1 test that I order for my clients and their children.

smiling mom holding smiling daughter
Nutrition Check-up for Kids

Even kids can get a non-invasive hair mineral test (HTMA) to check the balance of minerals in their bodies.

Mineral imbalances (and high heavy metal levels) lead to tantrums, poor sleep, gut issues, anxiety, hyperactivity, and more. Consider getting an HTMA for your children to optimize their nutrition!

Are Behavioral Issues in Children Linked to Mineral Imbalances (and Heavy Metals)?

Yes! As mentioned above, that was certainly the case for my client Sarah’s son.

Numerous studies have also indicated a significant correlation between behavioral issues in children and mineral imbalances and/or high levels of heavy metals. One of the commonly cited examples is the impact of lead toxicity on behavior. Elevated levels of lead, often from common environmental exposures, can contribute to problems such as hyperactivity, impulsivity, and learning difficulties in children.

This is an image of a cup of water and water filter system for a blog about the importance of filtering toxins out of your water.

Sadly, high levels of heavy metals in children are a MUCH bigger issue than most of us realize.

Similarly, imbalances in essential minerals can also influence behavior. For instance, magnesium, often deemed the ‘relaxation mineral,’ when deficient, can lead to restlessness and difficulty concentrating.

Zinc deficiency is also of concern as it plays a vital role in regulating neurotransmitters, and its deficiency can result in mood swings and irritability.

On the other hand, mineral excesses can be just as problematic. High levels of copper, for instance, can create symptoms of paranoia, hallucinations, and hyperactivity, mimicking psychological disorders like schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.

As you can see, maintaining the right balance of these minerals is crucial to children’s neurological and overall health.

The only way to be aware of which minerals need to be balanced is with a hair mineral test since it checks for the chronic levels of minerals within the body. When we have that data, we know which minerals our bodies need more of and less of. Having an individualized nutritional plan of action can help our children as they age.

How Can We Protect Our Children From Toxins?

Children today are perpetually exposed to a broad range of environmental toxins. How can we help to minimize these exposures?

It’s challenging since these toxins come from numerous sources such as the air they breathe, the food they consume, and the water they drink. Here are some of the top offenders:

  • Air Pollution: With polluted air, we are exposed to harmful heavy metals, including lead, mercury, and particulate matter, which can negatively impact our health. The air in busy cities is often full of toxins, as well as in mountainous regions where there are a lot of wildfires. Wherever you may live, it’s probably very wise to filter your air at home.
  • Food: Pesticide residues on fruits and vegetables, hormones in meat, or preservatives in packaged foods introduce toxins into our bodies. Certain foods are higher in heavy metals due to where they are grown. Why? Some parts of the world have more heavy metals in their soil.
    • Solution? Grow your own food or find a local farmer or CSA so you can be aware of WHERE the food is grown and HOW it is grown. If none of those are viable options, then buy organic produce at your local store.
  • Skin: Our skin absorbs what we put on it or what it comes in contact with. Contact with contaminated soils, household cleaning products, or personal care items can also contribute to children’s toxic loads.
    • Solution? Only put organic oils and lotions on your children. Glass bottles are best. I prefer our homemade magnesium lotion for soothing aching muscles and joints, castor oil mixed with argon or jojoba oil as a moisturizer, and castor oil for scratches and bruises. Trust me, homemade and/or simple organic products are usually the best!
  • Water: Even though it is an essential component of life, unfiltered water is often the #1 toxin source. It is a carrier of heavy metals and chemicals if it is not properly filtered. These frequent and varied exposures highlight the importance of mitigating the effects of these toxins for the sake of our children’s health.
    • Solution? Get a high-quality water filter for your family. I prefer Pure Effects. They sell high-quality filters that filter out a wide range of contaminants. Unlike reverse osmosis filters and distillation methods, the Pure Effects filters do NOT filter out the beneficial minerals. We can’t replicate the natural mineral levels in the water, so it is unwise to completely take out certain minerals which is why I like Pure Effects.

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The Potential Dangers of Detoxing Children

It’s probably becoming apparent to you that it’s crucial to understand that detoxing is not a one-size-fits-all approach, especially when it comes to children.

Children have unique needs and requirements due to their still-developing organs and systems. Their bodies may not be equipped to handle the intensity of some detox programs.

For instance, some well-meaning parents will try to kill off harmful bacteria or yeast overgrowth within their child’s guts with either an OREGANO tincture or oregano essential oil. As an extremely potent broad-spectrum microbial agent, oregano will not only kill bad microbes, but good ones as well.

I’ve seen where this is a disaster – in children and adults. Oregano is useful in certain situations, however, I’d never recommend it to children. Like antibiotics, it greatly disrupts the gut microbiome and has the potential for killing off too many good microbes, causing even worse long-term damage to their guts.

smiling woman with coffee
Stop Wasting Money on Useless Supplements Without Getting Tested!

Get a customized protocol based on your HTMA test results with targeted whole food and supplement recommendations that will supercharge you efforts in balancing your minerals AND hormones, ditching gut issues, as well as gently detoxing heavy metals from your body. Start your healing journey today with your own targeted protocol!

Another potential danger of a hard-hitting detox protocol is the release of stored toxins. Children’s bodies may store toxins differently than adults, which can lead to sudden and intense symptoms when these toxins are released during a detox program.

If an adequate and safe binder is not used then these stored toxins may just recirculate within their bodies, causing painful symptoms and inflammation, and then get redistributed to different tissues within the body.

Quote about the importance of following an individualized mineral balancing protocol before using a harsh binder that will also chelate minerals.

Mineral Testing for Kids

While you are working towards helping your children achieve the four main health pillars (clean air, clean water, clean food, and quality sleep), you may want to consider having your children’s mineral levels tested, particularly if they have a chronic issue.

With that being said though, a hair mineral analysis is an excellent preventative measure for children too, even if they don’t have chronic health issues.

Anxiety, depression, autism, skin rashes, gut issues, behavioral issues, excess weight gain, and so much more are linked to mineral imbalances – either an excess or deficit of certain nutrients.

Quote explaining that minerals balance sets the stage for proper detox

A hair analysis test is a simple and cost-effective option that can be done annually. More often is necessary if there’s a chronic health issue.

When there is a health issue to resolve, I generally recommend rechecking mineral levels with an HTMA test every 3-4 months so we can see how their mineral levels have changed and see how their diet may need to be changed to fit their new needs.

A Parents' Guide to "Detoxing"

There are safe ways to help our children maintain optimal health without resorting to harsh detox programs. Here are a few alternatives for parents to consider:

  • HTMA Test: Order a hair mineral test for your child: find a qualified and well-educated practitioner who will actually guide you through the process rather than just providing the test results. This is very important because there is an art to reading an HTMA test. You’re more than welcome to reach out to me!
  • Nutrition: Providing our children with whole, unprocessed foods rich in essential vitamins and minerals can help support their overall health and detoxification processes. The hair mineral test will show you exactly which nutrients need to be a priority for your children.
  • Water: Drinking plenty of water helps flush out toxins from the body. Most of our children are dehydrated these days. Be sure to offer your child filtered or spring water instead of tap water, which contains heavy metals, harmful bacteria, chemicals, birth control hormones, etc.
  • Air Filter: There are many toxins in our homes. The air we breathe every day matters since it gets circulated all throughout our bodies. An air filter makes a huge difference!
  • Green Products: Opt for natural cleaning and personal care products. Reducing your child’s exposure to toxins in the products they use can make a significant impact on their health. Consider using natural, non-toxic alternatives for cleaning and personal care products.
  • Physical Activity: Sweating is one of the body’s natural ways of eliminating toxins. Encourage your child to be physically active through play and sports. Get out there and be active with them too!
  • Castor Oil Pack: If there is one detox tool that you want to try out for your child then I’d suggest it be a castor oil liver pack. It does not “detox” the body per se. What it does do is support the liver in working more efficiently so that the liver can better remove toxins from the body. There is a company that makes kid-sized versions of castor oil liver packs that are less messy than what you’d probably make at home. Learn more about it HERE


Graphic with tips on "How to Help Kids Detox Naturally"

The Bottom Line

Detoxing children may not always be the safest or most effective solution, particularly when their minerals are imbalanced – which is a VERY common issue nowadays. 

I encourage you to repeat the phrase “test, not guess” over and over again so it sinks in as important. It’s beneficial to trust our guts as parents at times, but before embarking on any detox program, it’s crucial to test your child’s nutrient levels, as well as have a well-educated nutritional practitioner guide you through the test results. From there, a mineral-balancing plan can be crafted for your child.

There’s so much value in asking questions and researching what’s best for our children. Let’s empower ourselves and our children to lead healthy, low toxin lives. It’s important to safeguard them from toxins while also educating them about what it looks like to eat a diet that is varied and extremely mineral-rich.

back of woman's hair
Hair Mineral Analysis Test

Minerals are necessary to make energy as well as help your body make hormones and decrease anxiety and depression.

Check your chronic mineral status and heavy metal load (along with your family’s) with a test that analyzes these elements. Metals like mercury, lead, cadmium, aluminum, and arsenic that can harm our health in major ways are  checked in this test. Get your HTMA test today! 

Want an HTMA Test?

Are you curious if a hair mineral analysis can help you or your family’s health? With our world being so inundated with toxins, I encourage people to dig deeper into their nutritional status and ability to detox. It’s better to be preventative with our health and test before a health issue develops.

Hair mineral test on a table

Feel free to reach out if you’d like to see if I currently have a waiting list for my mineral-balancing program (or course)! It’s important to be part of a program in which you are guided through how to actually balance your minerals. There’s an art to properly balancing minerals because all the minerals interact with one another and do a special dance with one another within the body.

I’m here to help.

Whenever you’re ready, there are 2 ways I can help you:

1.  Hair Tissue Mineral Analysis (HTMA) Testing

Please note that A Hair Mineral Analysis (HTMA) is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, reverse, or prevent any disease. It is not intended to replace any other medical test(s) that may be prescribed by your medical doctor.

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