A long, long time ago when man was inventing the wheel… nature provided us with pristine surroundings and atmosphere. We drank from the crystal blue waters, ate ‘organic’ fruit and vegetables, and rested in unspoiled lands.
…How so much is changed. Yes, we have progressed in terms of no longer defecating where we eat. Instead we have raped and pillaged all of the earth; her rivers, lakes, oceans, forests, deserts, and anywhere else we can find*.
As a consequence we now live in a toxic environment that compared to 100 years ago, would completely exceed imagination. Lift a bottle of water to our mouth… bring in dangerous xenoestrogen plastics. Apply our daily antiperspirant… introduce the heavy metal aluminium. Breathe in a full breath… hello arsenic.
Before this turns in to one of those “the sky is falling” type blog posts, let me digress and say:
“Whether you like it or not, your environment is affecting your health; but you do have the power to control it.”
And one of the biggest problematic elements found on earth for kidney sufferers is the heavy metal cadmium. Cadmium is one of the ‘big’ four heavy metals that are associated with the biggest threats to human health. The other three include: lead, mercury, and arsenic.
Heavy metals are routinely studied by large international bodies (such as the World Health Organisation – WHO) to determine their affects on human health. As such, much data and evidence has shown that these heavy metals exert powerful, though destructive, biological effects on the human body.
Cadmium in particular is an easy one to be exposed to due to the nature in which it is used. Nickel-cadmium batteries are mass produced and shipped to all four corners of the Earth – where you are probably using some right now. Cadmium industrial emissions are also very high, due to the fact that most cadmium products are uncommonly recycled. And cadmium exposure is profoundly increased in those who smoke cigarettes (cadmium is found in tobacco).
So What Are The Main Sources of Cadmium?
• Cigarette smoke (inc. passive smoking)
• Batteries (nickel-cadmium)
• Evaporated milk
• Electroplating (Electronics)
• Drinking water (galvanised pipes)
• Phosphate fertilisers
• Breathing contaminated air in the workplace
• Plumbing alloys
• Photographic chemicals
I am sure you are wondering by now…
“So How Does Cadmium Affect The Kidneys?”
Well, studies have shown that long-term exposure to cadmium via the food, water, or air, builds up in the kidneys and can possibly cause kidney disease and kidney failure via a number of pathways. A 2003 study in New Zealand (using mice) showed that in as quickly as 4 weeks of exposure there was an increase in antinuclear antibodies (=immune system). And on top of that, after 31 weeks on a low dose, increases in IgG2a (=immune system) were also noted. This brought about increased levels of protein in the urine and continued presence of immune bodies in the kidneys; indicating a kidney linked auto-immune disease (e.g. glomerulonephritis).
For many of you with hypertension (aka high blood pressure), a fire is burning intensely within you, which must be extinguished. Inflammation is the cause of many illnesses, and studies now point towards inflammation as a key trigger and driver for high blood pressure – the second biggest cause of kidney disease after diabetes.
If you haven’t already gathered, treating the cause of your illness is rule number one for healing yourself from renal disease (and any disease for that matter), so excuse when I repeat myself 5 billion times on this one…
“Treat the cause, not the symptoms. Treat the person, not the disease.”
So when I came across this study, I just had to show you. The results weren’t just suggestive, they were straight out conclusive! (Study: JAMA December 10, 2010, Vol 290. No. 22 2945)
A group of researchers came together to observe whether C-reactive protein (= a marker of systemic inflammation) is linked to high blood pressure. C-reactive protein has already been connected with the increased likelihood of myocardial infarction (= heart attack) and stroke, so the dangers to the cardiovascular system is already well established. On a side note: inflammation has also been associated with the development of diabetes, gastrointestinal disorders, dementia, increased aging, arthritic conditions, skin disorders, immune dysfunction, and many more.
The study began by taking blood samples from 20,525 people with normal blood pressure. 7.8 years later they measured the same individuals again, and discovered that now a quarter of them had high blood pressure (5,365). C-reactive protein was then tested and shown to be significantly associated with an increased risk of developing high blood pressure.
They concluded “C-reactive protein levels are associated with future development of hypertension, which suggests that hypertension is in part an inflammatory disorder.”
This may seem a blatantly obvious statement to make to many people, but I am surprised time and time again how often this overlooked when treating ones health. But then again, this maybe second nature to me as throughout my naturopathic studies I was always told, verbatim: “treat the person, not the disease, treat the cause, not the symptoms”.
For example, this is most obvious when you slice your finger with a knife; you do not try and remedy the situation by increasing the strength of your skin so it can withstand knife penetrations do you? (I hope not, as that would be a little crazy!). No, you try and slice with more accuracy, because it was the handing of the knife that was the cause of the cut, not the skin being too weak.
The same can be said for let’s say, using pain medication for a headache. Are you treating the ‘headache’? Think about it. Or are you really inhibiting the ‘pain’.
A good question to ask before you ever treat yourself is “what am I trying to achieve here?”.
If you are trying to receive quick relief from the pain, then yes this is a VERY wise thing to consider, otherwise, if you are trying to heal, cure, or remedy the headache then you are entirely going about it the wrong way.
Though the solution to the cause of the headache maybe a tricky one to work out initially – as there are many possible causes: magnesium deficiency, spinal problems, estrogen dominance, high blood pressure, heavy metal toxicity, neurological disorders, just to name a few – it ALWAYS results in lifelong healing. Well worth the time and investigation, I believe.
…You see, when you realise the cause of YOUR kidney disease, you will be freed from its hold on you. And it won’t stop just at your kidneys, your whole body & life will be transformed by the flow on effect.
“Ones’ health displays the law of ‘cause and effect’ with perfection”
Take diabetes for example, the number one cause of kidney disease in the world, do you believe just treating the kidneys will be enough to heal them permanently if you leave your diabetes unchecked?