A PERSISTENT LOW SODIUM/POTASSIUM RATIO
by Lawrence Wilson, MD
© August 2012, The Center For Development
For information about the sodium/potassium ratio, read the article on this site called The Sodium/Potassium Ratio. This article concerns a common problem of why a hair sodium/potassium ratio, also called the vitality ratio, sometimes remains low, even though the patient follows a nutritional balancing program correctly and even though the personÕs health and other items on the hair analysis may improve.
Before beginning, it is most important that the hair is not washed at the mineral analysis laboratory to obtain accurate sodium and potassium values. Only Analytical Research Labs and Trace Elements, Inc. do not wash the hair at the laboratory. I do not recommend using Trace Elements, Inc. for hair testing. They are not as careful, they do not list the ideal hair values, their graphs are more difficult to read, and their nutrition programs are terrible.
Improper Diet. Improper diet or subtle difficulty handling sugars and carbohydrates may also cause a persistent low Na/K ratio. Diet plays an important role in sugar-handling, as do mineral deficiencies and toxic conditions of all kinds that may result indirectly from a poor quality diet and/or improper eating habits. For example, some clients simply refuse to give up eating sugars and other sweets. This may seem innocuous, but in some cases it will slow or perhaps even stop progress in the correction of the Na/K ratio.
Perhaps low levels of omega-3 fatty acids or even impaired vitamin D levels, both of which are common, might also impair correction of the Na/K ratio.
Aging. Older people may persist with a lower Na/K ratio due to weaker adrenal glands, or perhaps kidney dysfunctions, which are usually due to the presence of toxic metals and lowered vitality as one ages.
Vaccines. These introduce many poisons such as mercury into the body, as well as toxic germs and other contaminants in most cases. Excellent alternatives to toxic vaccination exist. See the article on this site entitled Vaccination for details.
Fatigue and/or low vitality for any reason. Fatigue alone can cause a low sodium/potassium ratio and can cause it to persist. It is usually due to inadequate rest and sleep, although it could be due to overdoing on activity or exercise, in a few cases.
Medications and other drugs. Medical or recreational drugs often contain toxic metals, even marijuana. They can poison the kidneys and all other organs, affecting the sodium/potassium ratio.
Chronic infections. Dr. Paul Eck discovered that a low Na/K ratio is associated with chronic infections. Based on years of experience, I estimate that the average person has at least a dozen or more chronic infections. Common sites are the eyes, ears, sinuses, teeth, intestines, joints, bronchial tubes, lungs, liver and elsewhere.
Eliminating these infections may take a number of years even when one follows a nutritional balancing program. This may occur because:
á The infections thrive on weakened tissue and toxic matter in the body. Most people have plenty of this by the time they undertake a nutritional balancing program. Only as the toxic and diseased tissue is removed can the body completely rid itself of these infections.
á They are often very old, deep-seated and chronic, meaning that they are well-entrenched, often in areas of the body with impaired circulation or tissues that are unhealthy such as the bronchial tubes and even the ear canals in many people.
á Often they have been encapsulated or walled off by the body to some degree. This reduces blood circulation, oxygenation and hydration to the area, often causing healing to be much more difficult and slower. It also means that nutritional remedies, colloidal silver or any other medication has difficulty reaching the infected area.
á Many bacterial infections were treated with antibiotics that killed off most of the infection, so the person felt better. However, the germs that remain are often resistant to antibiotics, which means they are not susceptible to medical treatment.
á Meanwhile, past use of antibiotics has caused toxicity in the body that is subtle, but very real. The drugs must often be removed from the body with coffee enemas, sauna therapy and a properly designed nutritional balancing program, and this also takes time. Strange as it may sound, removing the drug residues is often helpful to strengthen the immune response to the point where the body can go after the remaining infection.
á Sauna therapy that 1) enhances the circulation, 2) heats the tissues are few degrees, and 3) heals the tissues with near infrared energy, is often also necessary to activate the bodyÕs immune response enough to cause healing to begin.
These chronic infections may present with no symptoms, or very low-grade symptoms. For example, one may only experience post-nasal drip, a light cough, a mild ear ache, other minor aches and pains, or other vague complaints from time to time. For this reason, most people have no idea these infections are present. Yet they can easily cause the Na/K ratio to remain low for years, in some cases.
Hidden toxic metals. Everyone today, in my experience, has excessive amounts of toxic metals and many toxic chemicals in their bodies. These may also take a few years to remove completely, or longer. Nutritional balancing is one of the fastest ways to remove them very deeply, much faster and deeper than chelation in many cases, for example. However, it is still a slow process as many are hidden deep in the brain, the bones, and other organs where they are virtually undetectable by challenge tests, hair tests and other methods. They will be revealed as they are eliminated through the hair, however. The process of removing the metals deeply must take a lot of time due to:
á Toxicity of the metals. They are extremely toxic substances. If they were removed too quickly, they could poison or even kill a person. The body seems to know how to remove them at a pace that is safe, providing we keep balancing the body chemistry and supporting a person the entire time. Otherwise, it just takes longer. Rarely, a person will have a powerful toxic reaction as a heavy metal is released from a storage site, but this is not common.
á Location of the metals, in some instances. Some storage sites of the body are much harder to reach than others due to impaired circulation, or other difficulties such as the blood-brain barrier and others. Toxic metals in the bones, for example, usually take longer to reach as well due to reduced circulation and just the depth or layer of the tissue where they are stored. Sites that have suffered damage and scarring, such as the ear canals, bronchials, lungs and other tissues may also be harder to regenerate and thus take longer.
á Incorporated into enzymes. Toxic metals are not just sitting in the body or floating free in the tissues, although this is true of some of them. These are the easiest to remove. Unfortunately, millions of metal atoms are replacing essential minerals in enzymes throughout the body. They cannot simply be pulled out with a chelator or anything else. The body must very carefully and slowly replace them in the enzyme binding sites. This is a much slower process, but a vital one that slowly increases a personÕs energy level and restores the functioning of all the body organs as well.
á Low vitality. Energy is required to synthesize new enzymes, carry away toxic metals and activate the eliminative organs to remove them completely. Most people, especially when they begin a program, have low cellular energy production that make this process much slower.
á Impaired eliminative channels. All toxic metals must be flushed or removed from the body through the so-called eliminative channels or organs such as the liver, kidneys, bowel and skin. Some can be removed through the lungs and elsewhere but these are the main routes. Most people have very damaged livers, kidneys, colons and skin, so this slows the process of metal elimination drastically, often for a few years until these organs can be rebuilt and function at their optimum levels. Blood tests and x-rays are not sensitive enough to pick up the congestion and toxicity of the major organs in most cases.
á Impaired general mineral nutrition. As explained above, toxic metals must be replaced by vital minerals in enzymes. Just following a healthful diet and taking a few supplements is not enough to replenish dozens of trace minerals. Time is required as well. The body has complex buffering systems, and it will only accept a certain amount of these essential minerals at one time. This is even true if one decides to take mineral in intravenously or intramuscularly. Each mineral must be bound to a mineral transporter to be properly utilized in many instances and the process of remineralizing and renourishing a body thus is a time-consuming process, no matter what. If I felt that IV or IM minerals and other nutrients were better, I would suggest it. So far, however, I have seen the opposite. Other than very gross remineralizing of the body, these routes of administering nutrients seem to do more damage by unbalancing the delicate mineral balance of the body and bypassing the normal buffering systems of the body having to do with food absorption. Exceptions to this principle are when a person is very depleted. In these cases, a few vitamin and mineral IV treatments may initially speed up the remineralization of the body. After a number of these, however, they seem to do more harm than good. I am not sure how many are best, but it is not more than a dozen.
MENTAL AND EMOTIONAL CONSIDERATIONS
Dr. Paul Eck found that chronic emotions, in particular frustration, resentment and hostility, correlate with a low Na/K ratio. In other words, these negative emotions can, if important enough, create chronic stress to such a degree that it affects this ratio critically and keeps it low.
If these emotions are not addressed, a person may not be able to overcome the low ratio with just diet, supplements and a healthful lifestyle. This is an important reason why a low ratio may persist.
Sodium/potassium ratio less than about 1, trauma and reduced awareness. Since Dr. EckÕs passing, I have found that when the Na/K ratio is less than about 1, a person is, in some cases, even less aware of emotional imbalances, and even subtle emotional or other types of traumas. Often the person appears well-adjusted and emotionally balanced. I believe this is due to a reduced level of awareness, though, rather than the absence of negative emotions or some kind of buried trauma.
We find that as the Na/K ratio begins to increase on a nutritional balancing program, the person is suddenly faced with his or her emotional issues. This can be very disconcerting and uncomfortable. Greater awareness sounds wonderful, but it is not so for these people. It may not be pleasant at all when hidden traumas or issues are brought to the surface of the mind.
This is especially the case at first, and even more so if one is not prepared or lacks the skills or support to handle the feelings of anger, anxiety, depression or other that may arise.
This problem can slow oneÕs progress in correcting a low Na/K ratio. These individuals may experience significant improvements in some areas, but their Na/K ratio may persist at a low level.
Explaining the possibility of deeply buried emotions and traumas is most helpful and perhaps essential to enable some patients to move beyond their traumas and their low Na/K ratio. Techniques such as meditation, relaxation and a number of natural therapies designed to help process emotional traumas more easily may also be excellent in this regard.
Spiritual Attitudes. At times, an attitudinal change may be needed to clear a persistently low sodium/potassium ratio. For example, having excessive expectations of people or situations easily gives rise to chronic frustration. The habit of holding grievances leads to feelings of resentment and to living in the past.
Attitudes that promote a normal Na/K ratio include living in the present, letting go of grudges and grievances, forgiving everyone (which does not mean condoning bad behavior), and keeping expectations reasonable at all times. An attitude of gratitude for what you have, no matter how paltry or imperfect it may appear, can also be most helpful.
Correcting oneÕs attitudes can also assist tremendously to face unpleasant emotions or issues from the past or the present with courage and great compassion for oneself and for everyone, in fact, even if they appeared to harm one.
Any therapy or method that assists a patient change his or her attitudes can go a long way to correcting a low Na/K ratio. In fact, cultivating healthful attitudes also helps all aspects of healing the body and mind.