Cenote, I also stuck stuff on the Autism thread before you gave me permission... , which was more in answer to their questions, can you read the autism thread while I'm asleep and you're awake, and let me know if there is something really specific I've not answered and I will try to find an answer for you.
On the Autism thread, particularly note the selenium bit... one abstract re mothers and babies...
I'm not sure where you are, but a full mineral profile would be a useful test, from a reliable laboratory. Hair mineral tests are not accurate. Only sweat and blood are.
If you can't do that, and who can afford it more than once anyway, you might have to go by intuition, like I did
The agriculture people here have pretty comprehensive soil analyses, and one useful way of finding out what is missing from soils, is to talk to vets or animal breeders. They give their animals mineral licks and special supplements, because unlike people, its considered vital for animals. But for people, it doesn't matter?
Daily Mail, March 5, 2001
FRUIT and vegetables are not as good for us as they were 50 years ago according to a scientific study. Modem farming methods mean that the amount of essential minerals In the food we eat has been reduced alarmingly. There is up to 75 per cent less calcium and 93 per cent less copper . In fruit and vegetables, the study says. Runner beans which used to contain a significant amount of sodium - vital for the working of the nerves and muscles - now have almost no traces of it at all.
The levels of other important minerals such as iron, phosphorous, potassium and magnesium have also plummeted. Nutritionist David Thomas said he was 'astonished' by his flndlngs. 'Minerals have been recognised as being very important to our physiology, but the general public has no idea that there has been this dramatic decline in the levels of such elements in our food,' he said. His research allowed that broccoli has 75 per cent less calcium, which is essential for building healthy body and teeth. Carrots have 75 per cent less magnesium, which protects against heart attacks, asthma and kidney stones.
Spinach, famous as a good source of iron, was found to have 60 per C less iron than it did 50 years ago. Mr Thomas said he believed the reduction in the mineral content in food was a result of modern farm methods which use massive amounts of fertiliser on the soil. The fertilisers encourage ph growth, but this Is at the expense of the minerals which are Important for good health. Mr Thomas said: 'We are made up of these substances. If they're deficient then the body cannot cope as well as It would otherwise.'
He based his conclusions on data from The Composition of Foods, a comprehensive study of the content of all major foods dating back to 1940. By comparing figures over a 50-year period he was able to plot certain trends. A similar analysis, comparing data from 1930 and 1980, was published in the British Food Journal in 1997. It compared 20 vegetables and found levels of calcium, iron and other minerals had declined significantly.
Professor Tim Lang, of the renowned Centre for Food Policy at Thames Valley University, said the results revealed an important trend which needed to be exposed. 'These are big percentages,' he said. 'The nature of production is altering what we are eating. Plant breeders have been trying to develop tomatoes and carrots and fruit that look nice, resist disease and can withstand being shipped halfway around the world.
'They have been less concerned about the minerals in the food. 'We are dying prematurely of coronary heart disease and cancer and we are being told to cut down on fat and eat more fruit and vegetables. But at the same time they are changing the content of what we are eating.' Mr Thomas runs a company called Trace Minerals UK, based in Sussex, which distributes a mineral supplement called ConcenTrace.
Professor Lang said that despite his commercial interest, Mr Thomas had carried out a legitimate piece of research.
If you have taken the pill even a relatively short time, you may have a copper/zinc imbalance and a magnesium, B6, folate and EFA deficiency.
Ellen Grant has much to say on miscarriages, but it would be best if you can obtain her book to read that yourself, because its quite complicated, but if mineral deficiency was one thing that contributed to the miscarriage then, then that's even more reason to have a profile done now.
I use a mineral formula based solely on the deficiencies in the soil in this country, since most of what I eat comes from here. I use it every day, and were I to be pregnant now, I would use it, and increase my levels of magnesium, and check the copper/zinc balance.
I would be using Dorothy Hall's and Carol Odell's book simply because its so down to earth and easy to understand. If you want to understand more about minerals, read Paul Bergner's book "The Healing Power of Minerals, special nutrients and Trace elements."
Even organically, its not possible to get what you need in terms of minerals.
When I was pregnant, because I have low blood pressure, which drops further when I'm pregnant I lived on buckwheat pancakes made from eggs from our own hens, unpasteurised cow's milk (this country doesn't and never has done hormones of any kind
: and I know there are places in the US where you can buy non-hormone organic antibiotic free milk. We can also buy cheese made the old Europe way, not Past-yer-ized.... Then I'd add salt and buckwheat flour I'd just ground myself, and make pancakes, like crepe suzettes. Inside I would sometimes put sliced fresh peaches, or whatever was in season, with home-made yoghurt, or clabbered cream
with liquid honey, or maple syrup, until I found snap freeze boysenberry powder, and went on binges of that.
I ate a lot of avocados, becuase my body screamed for them, so listen to what your body screams for.
If you scream for chocolate, particularly dark, and you're not sleeping well, its a B deficiency.
Nausea in pregnancy is often a long term B deficiency, so look carefully at that long before TTC.
crucial, crucial, crucial is Essential Fatty Acids. Use as wide a variety as possible.
In pregnancy if you want vitamin A take only betacarotene, because if you use cod liver oil, it can cause toxicity if you take too much. With betacarotene, your body only converts what you need. The only exception to that is viral infections where you have photosensitivity, then I would be using CLO.
So a pyramid for me would basically stem from what soil deficiencies you have, how much you grow your own ( I do and use three different kinds of rock dust, and huge quantities of compost, dolomite and ash).
Look to your minerals first. Remember you can't absorb minerals if your gut isn't right, so I'd be using home made yoghurt, Kefir, Yakult (becasue that acidophilus is the least destroyed by stomach acid) and even kefir-based cheese.
You can also aculture fruit juices to kefir...
I wouldn't use kombucha though.
Other probiotics would be tradition saur-kraut, or whatever you prefer.
Okay, they will warn you about listeria foods, but if your immune system is healthy I say pox on that advice. For me, I don't eat any fish that is a scavenger type fish. It must have scales, and not be a bottom feeder. For me, that cuts out molluscs, clams, scallops, and crays. It would also cut out roughy or any other deep fish, as these fish have the highest concentration of heavy metals.
That said I'm not a big fish fan. My father was a marine biologist, so as a child my stomach saw more fish etc, than most people would in a lifetime... enough to put anyone off. But as a principle, look at the toxic metal loadings of fish types before thinking about eating fish.
Depending on where you are, try to get wild meat if its from a safe unpolluted area. That will have the best mineral balance, though one of the sites I used to put up about selenium deficiency was an article that has since disappeared off the web, but copied off my hard drive said this:
Nation & World : Sunday, September 09, 2001
Fighting a battle for little bighorns
By Gary Polakovic
Los Angeles Times
WIND RIVER MOUNTAINS, Wyo. - The baby bighorn sheep stumbled and collapsed on the stony hillside, too sick and wobbly to keep up with its mother.
Jon Mionczynski, a wildlife researcher who followed the pair, had seen this before. For some reason, lambs born into the largest herd of bighorn sheep in the Rockies were not surviving.
It would be hard to find a wilder, safer sanctuary, or so it seemed. But as scientists teamed up with Mionczynski to unravel the mystery, they learned that there is no such thing as pristine wilderness and no refuge from the Industrial Age.
Mionczynski nicknamed the struggling lamb "Rambo" because of its tenacity and pluck. Each time it fell, it struggled to its feet, even after blinding an eye in a tumble.
One evening, he was close to capturing Rambo for testing, but the lamb and its mother started down the mountain and, out of reach, hunkered down in a fortress of boulders near a crag called Lion Pass.
"I returned at daybreak and saw the ewe still guarding the site," Mionczynski recalled. "She made a low-pitched, throaty bleat ... brrrr ... brrrr. It was like a sheep crying, and it just went right through me."
When he got to the boulders, he saw fresh mountain-lion droppings. "The ewe had a torn ear, blood running down her face and claw marks on the side of her head," he said. "The lamb was gone. That was the end of Rambo."
In a way, the natural order had prevailed: the strong picked off the weak. But something was unnatural, too: what was making lambs so sick within weeks of their birth? Why were ewes leading weak lambs on arduous treks through cougar country to reach mineral licks at the base of the mountain?
The herd, which used to number about 1,250, plummeted by 30 percent in two years during the early 1990s and never recovered. Since then only about two out of every 10 lambs have survived.
In 1998, the Wyoming Department of Game and Fish told Mionczynski to set up a one-man camp at nearly 12,000 feet, track the herd's every move, study every foot of their mountaintop refuge, examine plants they eat and send back blood and tissue samples of dead and dying animals.
The job called for a meticulous observer and a skilled outdoorsman, someone who did not fear grizzly bears or living in a tent in snowstorms and driving winds. For Mionczynski, it was the dream assignment.
"I have the best job in the world," Mionczynski said. "I'm just a peon in this research, but I like to think I am helping these animals."
Now, four years into the project, scientists believe they are close to solving the mystery. What they have discovered suggests that profound environmental changes are beginning to ripple through the food chain and into the bodies of lambs. They are learning that even reclusive bighorn sheep, masters of evasion, can't escape pollution that falls from the sky.
As a result, Mionczynski and others fear, these icons of wild America may be unable to survive in the wild without continual human intervention.
A summer thunderstorm peels off the Winds, a fitting name for the mountain range west of Dubois, briefly spilling rain and hail over town. Tourists pull off of U.S. 287 into the National Bighorn Sheep Interpretive Center, the newest and most ornate facility in this two-lane town. It's located past the Ramshorn Inn Tavern, not far from the high school where the Rams play, a couple blocks from the Ramshorn Food Farm on Ramshorn Street.
"This town loves these sheep and we're proud of them," said museum Director June Sampson. "In the winter, people can see them with spotting scopes from their living rooms. Hundreds of people come from all over to see the sheep."
Rocky Mountain bighorns have thrived in these mountains southeast of Grand Teton National Park for centuries. They are stocky and barrel-chested with petite feet that stick to rocks like suction cups. In the fall, rams charge one another and smash heads at speeds of 20 mph in battles that sometimes last all day and all night. Shoshone and Gros Ventre Indian tribes made powerful bows from the horns, which are still prized by hunters as trophies.
The herd inhabits the northern Winds in scattered bands. When they all converge on the sagebrush hills at the edge of town during winter, they constitute the largest group of wild sheep in North America. They once were so abundant that they were transplanted to establish new populations from South Dakota to New Mexico to Idaho.
Yet there are fewer and fewer sheep for tourists to enjoy. Barely 800 animals remain in the herd, which is still in decline.
No sooner had Mionczynski set up camp on Middle Mountain in June 1998 than he saw many lambs as feeble as Rambo. Born healthy, they grew sick shortly after ewes made their annual spring migration to Middle Mountain to forage. If pneumonia didn't kill them, predators did.
"Some were crawling on their knees. They were so sick they couldn't even get up to nurse. Their muscles just seemed so stiff and they had trouble breathing. They stuck their noses in the air, mouths open, gasping for air," Mionczynski said.
Ranchers in the lowlands reported that the ewes ate dirt at washed-out mineral licks. It helped explain why ewes were leading their sick lambs down the steep mountain to sagebrush flats that they normally visited only in winter. Something essential was missing from their diet. The route traversed some of the roughest country in the Winds, including a series of cougar ambush spots in Lion Pass.
Eventually, Mionczynski observed that lambs who nursed from the ewes that made the journey to lowland mineral licks did much better.
The challenge was to find the missing ingredient in the mountain forage.
Working in a makeshift lab fitted into a cave in the boulders, Mionczynski began testing plants the sheep eat. He discovered that the nutrient selenium had dipped to alarmingly low levels.
Selenium is a peculiar, sulfur-like element essential for many mammals. It is a naturally occurring nutrient with a twist. Just a little is needed to ensure bones, muscles and immune systems develop properly, but just a little more can be toxic.
Tests on Middle Mountain showed 5 parts per billion of selenium in forage favored by bighorns - 75 percent lower than the minimum requirement for a healthy immune system, according to veterinarians.
But how could selenium be in short supply? Soils across much of the West are awash in it. In nearby Dubois and other parts of Wyoming, range cattle are sometimes poisoned from ingesting too much of it.
The selenium content in plants fluctuates with weather, rising in dry years and falling in wet. The fluctuations correspond neatly with a 30-year lamb survival trend, with fewer surviving in wet years, scientists say.
At the same time, the chemical content of rainfall was changing. So was the composition of the soil that absorbed it.
For at least a decade, according to scientists, storms have been carrying larger and larger amounts of chemical contaminants and dumping them across the Rockies. Among the chemicals are nitrates and ammonium, which can saturate the environment with nutrients or create acidic conditions similar to those that plague forests in the Northeast and Canada. The phenomenon is known as acid rain.
At the bighorn camp on Middle Mountain, scientists tracking storms and wind currents have traced the sources of pollutants that blow in from hundreds of miles away.
On the one hand, the pollutants fertilize plants and microorganisms. On the other hand, they can saturate soil and water with nutrients, causing toxic algae blooms, harmful acids and changes in soil chemistry.
"We're pushing the first dominoes in the food chain, and there's good evidence it's increasing and probably in response to nitrogen deposition," said Mark Williams, a hydrogeochemist and fellow at the Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research at the University of Colorado at Boulder. "We've reached a threshold and we're at that slippery slope where we are headed toward dead fish and dead trees."
Near Colorado's Rocky Mountain National Park, scientists have begun an experiment to see if pollutants are short-circuiting the selenium cycle and contributing to declines in the bighorn herd at St. Vrain Canyon, said Rob Roy Ramey, chairman of zoology at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science.
"Urbanization and sheep deaths seem to go hand in hand. We know there's a lot of acidification of the front range of the Rockies, and this offers a perfectly reasonable and clear mechanism. It's a hypothesis, but it's very plausible," Ramey said.
So that might be a tall order.
1) Gut flora to absorb
2) minerals, and
3) help the body to utilise and manufacture the maximum amount of B's available.
4) Folic acid is obligatory. Minimum 800mcgs a day.
5) EFAs variety is the key.
6) Buckwheat brings down high blood pressure, and puts up low blood pressure. I couldn't have survived without it. But even if you haven't lbp, it's high in rutic acid, which is a blood cleanser.
7) Listen to your body's messages, and if licorice is what it wants eat it, preferable organic, natural. If seville orange marmalade sprinkled with coconut on sourdough bread is what you want, eat it.
8) Bread. Eat only sourdough if possible. I've posted here before, that sourdough bread is the only bread whereby minerals are bio-available. Yeasted bread is only an option extra on odd ocasions for the feel in the mouth if that's a psychological need.
Anyway, sourdough tastes better IMO
9)Butter, milk cheese, unpasteurised if poss.
Only rule. If you body screams for it, no matter what it is, eat it; if your body says "No way" don't bother.
If you are like me, your body may shut off certain foods. Like Cabbage and onions. Not only was the smell uncopeable, they would make me vomit.
When it comes down to it, sometimes the only way to get what you need is a liquid mineral supplement.
I take all my supplements as powder in vegetarian capsules. Dolomite, I buy as powder and put it in capsules I buy myself. My husband just sprinkles it on his food
uke: but my stomach can't tolerate that. all supplements I buy come in non-gelatine capsules.
Be careful with seaweed. Certain types are high in iodine, and the last thing you need is an iodine excess, as that will cause mineral catabolisation. If you eat any granulated seaweed, no more than a pinch a day or half a teaspoon a week.
If I've missed something, yell.