It would be hard to think of a more suppressed and misunderstood health epidemic than that of copper toxicity. While millions around the world struggle with the effects, the mainstream message is that of denial and avoidance - "copper toxicity is rare"... or "there's no such thing". Rather than educate people on the potential effects of excess copper accumulation, the overly-simplistic message told to people is "everyone is deficient and should consume more". Rather than consider cell and tissue status of toxic accumulation, most medical testing and research is focused on the blood level, which conveniently ignores stored cell and tissue levels. Rather than providing fully informed consent to women being given birth control, the possibility of copper toxicity is almost never mentioned (and then even after symptoms develop, often denied). Rather than provide education on the role that mineral imbalances have on both physical and mental health (especially that of copper), the mainstream response is simply to ignore minerals and instead prescribe medication when symptoms appear.
Beginning with the work of Dr Carl Pfeiffer, MD, PhD in the 1970s, and further brought to light by the works of Eck, Watts, Walsh, Wilson, Malter, Fischer, and others, there is a wealth of research showing the existence of copper toxicity and its effects on human health. Yet, most doctors remain unfamiliar with this imbalance, or worse yet, deny its existence. One of the reasons for this is that treatment of copper toxicity (at least for non-acute cases), is based on nutrition, not pharmaceuticals; the latter approach provides big profits, the former does not (research and marketing tends to follow money). Nor is nutrition adequately taught in medical school.
Furthermore, when it comes to assessing copper status, almost all doctors and researchers rely on blood test results (and studies based on blood testing). This ignores one of the most fundamental aspects of copper toxicity - excess copper does not get stored in the blood! Blood levels have almost no correlation to stored tissue levels! Lack of education in this regard has led to even those with PhDs and other credentialed "experts" being skeptical that a mineral imbalance could possibly affect health; after all "it wasn't what they were taught in school"!
Equally unfortunate, most people fall across the plethora of articles written that promote copper deficiency, and sometimes those that even deny copper toxicity. The toll such messaging has taken on human health is devastating, all the way down to suicide because a young lady was told by her doctor that copper toxicity didn't exist (even though post-mortem testing verified her high copper load). (That young lady was not a singular case, there are many!). The toll on mental health has profound consequences, especially when the effect of copper is considered in relation to other resulting mineral imbalances.
The benefits of copper, as an essential nutrient, have been known for thousands of years. These benefits are nothing new, and that's what most people are only taught. Promoting only the benefits makes it easy to sell books, supplements, and copper devices when people can be convinced of a "miracle cure". Unfortunately, with copper, there are two sides to the story, and the research on this site as well as provided by the pioneers in this field who dedicated their lives to this research aims to bring that other side to light. For example, there's no denying that many people are deficient in copper (bioavailable copper!). In fact, most people are, and we must remember too that copper is an essential nutrient. However, for many of those people with deficiency, excess copper exposure can actually be a contributing factor to their underlying deficiency, in which case then taking more copper just adds fuel to the fire.
We could use the examples of water, or calcium, or sunshine, to make this more clear. A person dying of thirst in the middle of an ocean has both an excess and a deficiency of water at the same time. There is more than enough water, but none of it drinkable. In fact, drinking more of that water could be disastrous for the person's health, even fatal. Or, let's take calcium. Everyone knows calcium is an essential nutrient, just like copper. However, taking too much calcium (without other nutrients) can make bones more brittle and even leads to cell death. We also know that sunshine has health benefits. However imagine if a dark skinned equatorial tribal person with lots of melanin were to tell a fair skinned Celtic person that there's no harm in getting many hours of sun on the skin just because he or she can tolerate it! We have to elevate our understanding of minerals and recognize that there is a delicate balance in nature, and both too little and too much of something can both be harmful. This underscores considering both sides of the "copper coin". It also underscores the importance of considering biochemical individuality - a nutrient (in higher amounts) that may make one person feel better, could send another person completely off the edge, health-wise. And this is seen in clinical practice countless time and time again where one-size-fits-all advice was given, dangerously painting everyone with the same paintbrush.
The hope of this research, and website, is to advance nutritional understanding related to copper and presenting the "other side of the coin" so often dismissed. It also hopes to encourages greater appreciation of biochemical individuality, as well as the importance of looking beyond just blood. Unfortunately, for the millions of those affected by copper toxicity, the one-sided promotion of copper's benefits overshadows this research and is one of several factors (more are discussed below) that keeps copper toxicity off people's radar, and has only sown even greater confusion. Denial, lack of education in this field, and even the outright blocking of this information on a few prominent social media groups, means more and more people are being affected, unaware, with sometimes life-saving answers kept hidden in the dark.
“ With each successive generation, copper toxicity becomes more pervasive and common. Until medical doctors and other “health” care practitioners begin to study the mind/body’s mineral system especially as it is reflected in HTMAs, the medical / mineral disconnect will remain. Without HTMA data, medical doctors will not recognize the epidemic nature of the copper toxicity problem." ~Dr. Malter, Ph.D.
Throughout this site we explain, in significant detail, the various causes and effects of copper toxicity. Hopefully this work will shed clarity on a topic which affects so many, yet which still remains so unknown, and on which so much false information continues to be written about . The Internet today is flooded with articles that:
Social media, while it can be used to educate, has also become a source of much confusion. For example:
Without mentioning site names as their further promotion is not deserved, it is important for people to understand the caution necessary when researching this topic. By far the majority of websites and blog articles out there writing on copper are presenting blatantly false or misleading information, a huge disservice to women's health and those seeking real answers. A few examples:
Tragically, the Internet and social media has become a breeding ground of erroneous information, much of it influenced by a small number of individuals (including doctors) who have the power and a platform to convince large trusting audiences, and this is the unfortunate environment the public is left to navigate through. It's becoming increasingly difficult for people to know what to believe, especially when some of these so-called 'experts' flat-out deny the concept of 'copper toxicity'. Not only does such ongoing ignorance deny what so many have painfully struggled through, it also suppresses greater awareness of the condition and the chance to address the sources of exposure. How many more people have to painfully lose their health or a loved one because of ignorance surrounding copper toxicity, or their practitioner not understanding that the blood copper level is a fluctuating and highly unreliable marker, or not understanding the effect birth control pills, copper IUDs, copper sulfates, estrogens, copper piping and high copper diets have on people, physically and psychologically. How many more stories do we have to hear of young women being prescribed anti-depressants, without even an investigation into her copper level and associated mineral imbalances? To deny copper toxicity is to deny an individual's right to possibly finding the one answer that could save their life or transform their health. Too many lives have already been hurt or destroyed as a result of medical ignorance, and the health of our future generations, especially our young women, is most at risk. Those of us in the health care and holistic healing communities have a duty and owe it to the people we serve to promote proper understanding of this epidemic. It's time we move into a new paradigm of health, recognizing the interconnection between our environment, food choices, and minerals levels, and how those interrelated minerals influence, and indeed control, our health, even our personality. The science, research, and hard evidence has existed for over 40 years; it's time we recognize the toxic nature of copper on the body resulting not from mere internal 'dysregulation' but from the large number of sources from which we are receiving over-exposure (copper sulfates, copper IUDs, copper piping, xenoestrogens as examples). Leaving outdated medical and nutritional beliefs behind, let's open ourselves to knowledge which can truly serve the greater good of people. When women receive fully informed consent to birth control, when nutritionists understand the essentiality of program design based on a client's individual mineral profile and not fad dietary beliefs, and when the medical system allows for greater conversation on the role mineral imbalance plays in disease, what are the possibilities for our world in terms of reducing illness, increasing human energy, and saving relationships and lives?
The research on this site is the summation of 40+ years of research specific to mineral balances and copper toxicity. There is no longer a lack of research, or evidence. The evidence is clear and factual, especially through HTMA data. The hope is that through this website and furthering the life's work of pioneers in this field including Drs Eck, Watts, Pfeiffer, Malter, Wilson, and others, the tide will eventually be turned in favor of awareness and proper understanding for the benefit and healing of all those affected. It would be hard to think of a more suppressed and misunderstood health epidemic than that of copper toxicity. While millions around the world struggle with the effects, the mainstream message is that of denial and avoidance. Rather than educate people on the effects of excess copper accumulation, people are told that "everyone is dificient and should consume more". Rather than consider cell and tissue status of toxic accumulation, almost all testing is focused on the blood level, which typically comes back within a relatively normal range (not surprising given the homeostatic nature of blood). And rather than provide education on the role that mineral imbalances have on both physical and mental health, the mainstream response is simply to ignore minerals and instead prescribe a medication.
Beginning with the work of Dr Carl Pfeiffer, MD, PhD in the 1970s, and further brought to light by the works of Eck, Watts, Wilson, Malter, Fischer, and others, there is a wealth of research showing the existance of copper toxicity and its effects on human health. Yet, most doctors remain unfamiliar with this imbalance, or worse yet, deny its existance. One of the reasons for this is that treatment of copper toxicity (at least for non-acute cases), is based on nutrition, not pharmaceuticals; the latter approach provides big profits, the former does not (research and marketing tends to follow the money). Nor is nutrition adequately taught in medical school.
Furthermore, when it comes to assessing copper status, almost all doctors and researchers rely on blood test results (and the studies based on blood testing). This ignores one of the most fundamental aspects of copper toxicity - excess copper does not get stored in the blood! Blood levels have almost no correlation to stored tissue levels! Lack of education in this regard has led to even those with PhDs and other credentialed "experts" being skeptical that a mineral imbalance could possibly affect health; afterall "it wasn't what they were taught in school"!
Equally unfortunate, most people fall across the plethora of articles written that promote copper deficiency, and sometimes those that even deny copper toxicity. The toll such messaging has taken on human health is devastating, all the way down to suicide because a young lady was made to bel
"It's not too difficult to think of a conspiracy behind the copper toxicity epidemic. This is especially so when we note that, in 1975, Carl Pfeiffer, MD, PhD wrote his book Mental and Elemental Nutrients with a chapter on copper toxicity related to contraceptives. The vital information about copper toxicity was clearly there in Dr. Pfeiffer's book.
Then, the hair analysis research of Drs Paul Eck and David Watts showed the epidemic levels of copper toxicity, but in August, 1985, JAMA published their first article attacking hair analysis, claiming it was inaccurate and a "commercial" scam. Ironically, this 1985 JAMA article was based on shoulder length hair samples from two 17 year-old girls who were both copper toxic! The article's author and the editors of JAMA obviously had no idea that their own data validated copper toxicity as revealed in HTMAs.
In my view, ignoring the significance of Dr. Pfeiffer's work on copper toxicity as well as JAMA attacking the best lab test (HTMA) for detecting copper toxicity made sure that medical doctors and psychiatrists remained ignorant of the real problem of copper toxicity.
Therefore, millions of teen girls and young women have struggled with the effects of copper toxicity. They have had little or no chance of getting adequate help from most medical doctors or psychiatrists and other "mental health" practitioners. Essentially, the "standard of care" for decades has been based on continued ignorance of copper toxicity and the nutritional interventions that can really be helpful"
~ Dr. Malter, PhD
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