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Mercury to the Brain? Ginkgo, Vinpocetine, NAC, ALA, and others?

Discussion in 'Detox: Methylation; B12; Glutathione; Chelation' started by Lotus97, Oct 21, 2012.

  1. Lotus97

    Lotus97 Senior Member

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    I'm mostly writing this post for answers on ginkgo biloba and vinpocetine since I think the other supplements are already discussed in other threads, but I'm including them just to paint a fuller picture. I recently read that ALA (Alpha Lipoic Acid) and NAC could cause mercury to travel to the brain. I then remembered that ginkgo and vinpocetine work by increasing blood flow to the brain so I was wondering if this could make things worse.

    About 3 weeks ago (9/26/2012), I cracked one of my teeth that had a mercury amalgam filling in it. The tooth was removed the next day so I didn't really think I was at risk for toxicity. However, I started feeling strong physical symptoms of anxiety or over-stimulation and also my heart beating faster. By pure coincidence, about a week before the tooth cracked I had stopped taking some of my supplements to save money. These included:

    NAC 600mg twice/day (stopped on 9/17)
    Vitamin C 1500mg twice/day (stopped on 9/17)
    Alpha Lipoic Acid 600mg twice/day (stopped on 9/17)
    Ginkgo Biloba 120mg twice/day (stopped on 9/20)
    Coenzyme q10 100mg four times/day (stopped on 9/20) I'm not sure if coq10 has anything to do with mercury, but
    Glutathione sublingual 50mg with molybdenum (I don't remember when I stopped this)
    Taurine 4000mg/day (I don't remember when I stopped this)

    I should add that I tolerated these supplements well without any side effects before my tooth cracked. I have considered that going off these for 7-9 days and then reintroducing them at full dosages might have been part of the problem.

    I started taking these supplements again the day my tooth was removed because I thought they would help me heal (I wasn't taking them for mercury). I still had all of these supplements left except for the glutathione. The day the tooth was removed I was fatigued for most of the day, then the next day somewhat anxious and also irritable, the third day I was fatigued again. After that I mostly felt the anxiety/stimulation symptoms. I found out that part of the problem was my antibiotic (Clindamycin) and stopped taking that after 3 days because I read that it could cause herx/herxheimer symptoms. I also read that taurine, NAC, and ALA could cause detox symptoms so I stopped those along with ginkgo and coq10 which I thought might be causing the anxiety. It wasn't until a few days later that I started to suspect the mercury (I still don't know conclusively that it is mercury that is causing these symptoms). I then bought chlorella and glutathione with molybdenum and started taking those again along with garlic and NAC/ALA/Vit C (only once/day this time). I also bought vinpocetine to take instead of ginkgo since it's less likely to be stimulating. I also started holy basil and ashwaghanda, but I'm not sure they're really helping. I also take zyflamend PM which seems to help a little, but it can get expensive. Glycine and glutamine help sometimes too. I just ordered hawthorn berries because my heart has been beating faster. I'm already on blood pressure medication so I'm just going to start on a low dose of hawthorn. In addition, I've cut down my sugar intake and ordered some inulin/FOS to augment my probiotics. I'm also trying to get off Prilosec.

    My main question is whether ginkgo or vinpocetine is putting me at risk. I'm not sure if I should ask about the other things since they've probably been mentioned in other threads, but here's what I'm considering taking:

    -Chlorella
    -Cilantro
    -NAC
    -Glutathione
    -ALA
    -Vitamin C

    Should I just try taking them in a lower dosage than I've been taking them in the past or should I stop them altogether. I've also been reading a lot about methylation recently and I'm wondering how that's related. I'm not sure if I should continue taking my multivitamin and b complex until I run out (so if I can save some money) or if it's better to switch to methylcobalamin and methylfolate right away. I decided I'm going to stop taking everything that I mentioned above for a few days to see if my symptoms level out. I'm also stopping coq10, malic acid, and acetyl-l-carnitine since they might also be contributing to the stimulation.
     
  2. Adster

    Adster Senior Member

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    A lot of people say that the Cutler protocol is the only way to remove mercury safely. That's ALA, DMSA or DMPS dosed according to half life (3hrs for ala, 4 for dmsa and I think 6 or 8 for dmps) at quite low doses. If you google it you will find tons of information.
     
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  3. Ian

    Ian Senior Member

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    Having amalgams removed releases massive amounts of mercury. There is a special protocol for removing amalgams safely, so you don't get contaminated. But 99% of dentists don't follow it, so they poison themselves and their patients.
     
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  4. SickOfSickness

    SickOfSickness Senior Member

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    I don't know much about it, but have read that chlorella, NAC, cilantro, and others are bad to take if you still have some amalgams. Supposedly they encourage the mercury to come out of the amalgam.
     
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  5. Lotus97

    Lotus97 Senior Member

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    Thanks for the comments. I wouldn't say things are much worse since I cracked my tooth. I've had the speediness and heart palpitations before and I think some might be from antidepressant. However, those symptoms have gotten worse since the problems with my tooth. Also, I sometimes experience a soreness or even sometimes pain around my heart area. I'm kind of worried about what's going with my heart, but I don't know if I should tell my doctor. She'll probably just prescribe more prescription drugs and not sure I want to tell her about the mercury.
     
  6. Lotus97

    Lotus97 Senior Member

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    Update: After reading these forums a bit I think I have another theory as to why I've been having these problems for the past 5 weeks. I'm not ruling out mercury entirely, but I realized that the Jarrow B-complex that I've been taking for the past year (B Right) recently added methylfolate (Quatrefolic (6S)-5-methyltetrahydrofolate glucosamine salt) to the formula. I don't know the dosage because it also has folic acid in it and they just list the total amount of the two. I checked when I ordered it and realized I started taking it right around the time I started having problems. I was taking it twice a day until about 10 days ago when I began taking a different B-complex once a day and B Right once a day. Looking back I realize that I started feeling a little better. I attributed it to hawthorn that I also started taking around the same time. Then a few days ago I noticed I felt worse after taking the B Right so I stopped it for a few days and felt better (although also more fatigued). Today I tried taking it again and within an hour or two my symptoms came back. I had a rapid heartbeat and my mood which had been relatively stable (considering I have depression) for the past week or two dropped considerably. I'm wondering if I should buy methylfolate to test my theory because I don't like jumping to conclusions.
     
  7. AFCFS

    AFCFS Senior Member

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    I have heard that the NAC is good for mercury detox. A search on PubMed gives many some articles that may support that claim or at least point in that direction. Nac & Mercury Detox gives a simple overview. WebMD has some additional info on N - ACETYL CYSTEINE. Also, Iodine may help: Got Mercury Amalgams? Iodine May Be Beneficial and Iodine and Detoxification.

    For different reasons, I take NAC 2400 mg and Iodoral 50 mg, under a doctor's supervision. You have a lot going on there, so think it would be best to run your symptoms and meds by a doc for advice.
     
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  8. Johnmac

    Johnmac Senior Member

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    Anxiety & palpitations are mercury symptoms - so my guess would be that these are at least in part from the cracked tooth, which liberated mercury vapor which crossed your mouth's mucosal membrane & entered your bloodstream & thence elsewhere in the body.

    (I don't rule out other causes - 'multifactorial' is my favourite word.)

    The Cutler people (I am one) believe that:

    1. Taking alpha lipoic acid when you still have mercury fillings is very bad, as it redistributes the mercury round the body & into the brain.

    2. The only way to chelate (& chelation shouldn't begin till 3 months after amalgam removal) is to take the alpha lipoic acid every 3 hours round the clock for 3 days at a time, to minimise redistribution round the body. Twice a day is a no-no.

    Only three agents chelate mercury: DMSA, DMPS and ALA - the last being by far the most powerful, as it enters organs & cells, unlike the other two. ALA is the only chelator that can cross the blood brain barrier & drag mercury out of your brain (a place it rather likes to sequester itself). So it is powerful stuff, & quite dangerous if used episodically rather in in a constant dose.

    There are many reports of disturbed or improperly removed amalgams, and improper use of ALA, causing very bad reactions. I can vouch for the latter.

    A lot of people with mercury toxicity have been lastingly damaged by cilantro.

    I don't know much about NAC except that it's not a chelator, and that it is pretty sulphury: so if you are thiol sensitive (33-50% of people are) it could conceivably be exacerbating your reactions. Thiols weakly bond with mercury and drag it round the body & drop it again (making you sick). As you probably have quite a bit of mercury floating round your system right now (and if you're in the 33-50% bracket), your reaction to thiols will thus be much higher than it was before you damaged the tooth.

    But that's almost a side issue compared to the improper use of ALA, which can really mess you up.
     
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  9. Johnmac

    Johnmac Senior Member

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    PS:

    I don't know anything about chlorella, but found this at the Frequent Dose Chelation site:

    "The proteins in the chlorella have single thiol groups, which attract mercury and move it around in the body but are not strong enough to remove the mercury from the body. For removal you need molecules with the 2 thiol groups."

    There are a lot of bad reports on chlorella on the site. The site is at:

    http://health.groups.yahoo.com/group/frequent-dose-chelation/

    Lots to search in the "Files" section there.

    If you are trying to improve methylation, it would stand to reason that you should (safely) remove your remaining amalgams - as mercury is one of the key agents which damage methylation.

    Finally, the fact that you improve sometimes on glutamine and glycine lends some weight to my theory on NAC (above) - and thus to the theory that you got poisoned with mercury when your tooth cracked - as glutamine and glycine (ideally in a 2:1 ratio) douse down thiol/sulphur symptoms pretty nicely. Thiol/sulphur symptoms only tend to appear when mercury is present.
     
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  10. AFCFS

    AFCFS Senior Member

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    While trying to rule out any number of possibilities, and trying best to address symptoms/causative elements, without shooting ourselves in the foot, wondering how to go about ascertaining if it might be from a dental filling. Is the crack in the amalgam obvious (e.g. pain), would a dental hygienist/dentist pick it up on it during an cleaning/x-ray check? Can they possibly leak, or allow mercury escape just as is? Is there a test for it?
     
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  11. Johnmac

    Johnmac Senior Member

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    Perhaps the best test you can do - tho highly inadvisable - is to take ALA improperly. It will produce symptoms of disorientation, irritability, fatigue & brainfog.

    No-one should ever do that - but seeing as the OP already has, and had at least some of those symptoms - it is suggestive that mercury from the cracked tooth is at least in part to blame for the symptoms.

    A more general test of mercury toxicity is to take ALA properly, and see if you get some (much milder) symptoms. You'd need to buy the Cutler book to learn that approach.

    There is a hair test which will often confirm mercury in the body - discussed in the Cutler books.

    Yes, mercury fillings - even when they're not damaged - leak mercury vapor, which crosses into the body with ease. It then migrates to organs (especially those with lots of fatty tissue like the brain), where it takes up residence, and causes lots of problems down the years.
     
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  12. Victronix

    Victronix Senior Member

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    "Anxiety & palpitations are mercury symptoms"

    Yet those are also symptoms of thyroid problems, B-12 start-up symptoms, D deficiency, gut problems, or any of a number of issues. Hard to pinpoint a cause in this case given that several things are going on at once.
     
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  13. Lotus97

    Lotus97 Senior Member

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    I've had my my TSH and T4 free tested already and it was normal. I asked my doctor about other tests and she said it wasn't necessary. I take 6000 iu of vitamin D. I'm not sure about gut problems, but I do limit my sugar intake and take probiotics and prebiotics for Candida. I also take a few grams of glutamine on an empty stomach every day, avoid gluten, and recently stopped taking Prilosec to prevent leaky gut. I don't want to rule anything, but mercury seems to at least be playing a part. Also, I've questioned whether I have lyme disease or not about a week ago I had a rash on my ankle and about 3 years ago I had a similar rash on my ankle in the exact same place. I was bitten by a tic on my ankle about 16 years ago, but I didn't have any major symptoms immediately afterwards although my health has steadily declined since then. Also, both times the rash appeared was a few weeks after getting chiropractic adjustments and I've read people with lyme saying that they had a worsening of symptoms after adjustments. Not sure if any had a rash afterwards, but I know my symptoms did get worse after the adjustments.

    As far as taking ALA, as I've mentioned above before the cracked tooth I was able to tolerate high doses of ALA and NAC without any problems. Now I'm just taking a much lower dose of ALA and NAC just to be cautious. I'm not ready to start methylation right now so I feel that I have to do something.
     
  14. Lotus97

    Lotus97 Senior Member

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    I was reading one of Rich's posts and he said that methylcobalamin can cause problems with mercury:
    This is part of the reason he recommends hydroxocobalamin instead. I was thinking about switching to hydroxy b12 before I read that, but he also says that hydroxy b12 can convert to methyl b12 so do I also need to limit hydroxocobalamin? Is adenosylcobolamin/dibencozide safer or is hydroxy b12 fine?

     
  15. triffid113

    triffid113 Day of the Square Peg

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    I had all my mercury amalgams removed and the dentist made me take chlorella afterward for several weeks to absorb any more mercury. He followed a procedure to suck up mercury vapor etc as he was removing the amalgams. I had all of them removed so whether or not you can take chlorella with amalgams was not an issue.

    You could try olive leaf extract for the palpitations. I think (tentatively) they are either caused by low magnesium or hyperthyroid (which for all I know can cause low magnesium). I used to take rhodiola to help a poorly functioning adrenal gland (before I had to replace adrenal hormone with DHEA) and the rhodiola worked (prevented undeserved low blood sugar attacks) but it would cause one arrythmia per day. olive leaf extract cancelled out the arrythmia. However now that I am writing this it occurs to me that my arrythmia was SLOWed heart rate so not sure if it would work for you. You might want to search for magnesium and its affect on heart rate. Also you might want to check your thyroid. Also check the appropriate heading at www.ithyroid.com because there is some discussion about mineral relationships that is very interesting there.

    Your original question regarding Gingko is interesting. I have wondered the same thing myself. I get unilateral brain swelling (optic nerve, one side) when I have thyroid issued. I have this HUGE dose gingko which is GAY-RUN-TEED to dilate neural blood vessels. When I take it, the swelling I feel at the optic nerve diffuses ALL OVER MY BRAIN but in lower dose. So I wonder, did I do myself any good or did I now damage my entire brain??!! So, yes, I would say gingko spreads a bad thing around.
     
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  16. Lotus97

    Lotus97 Senior Member

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    One of the articles about Iodine you referred to raises doubts about the bioavailability of Iodine in kelp/seaweed. Although there are questions about contamination (arsenic and other heavy metals) in kelp and other types of seaweed I thought that minerals from food were usually bioavailable.
     
  17. Sam7777

    Sam7777

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    I myself 16 months ago took , among a massive amount of different supplements, ALA, chlorella, ashwagandha, B complex, minerals, ginkgo, gotu kola, all while having a damaged mercury amalgam filling in my mouth. I say damaged, because most of the filling and most of the tooth had been gone for 12 years, so it all essentially looked like a rotten tooth with out a filling. But trust me, it has pieces of amalgam concealed in the bottom of it. I have not recovered from this event, it caused me to aquire essentially chronic fatigue and anterograde amnesia. This is consistent with cutler forum warnings.

    I take this to be the most outright empirical proof possible that ALA is as strong as it is, and that mercury causes highly specific, characteristic CFS symptoms. In fact mercury initiates most thyroid disease and B vitamin deficiency, because it plays a part in destroying your digestive capacity and consequential ability to absorb minerals like calcium, magnesium, zinc, and vitamins such as B-12. But the digestive inhibition will ultimately lead to mineral deficiency(in my case my hair test confirms 8 mineral deficiencies). This will shut down and limit the efficiency of most of the important biochemical synthesis cycles associated with the metabolism, production, and assimilation of a number of the B vitamins. This is one reason why thyroid disease, B vitamin deficiency, and mercury symptoms are similar.

    Mercury plays a part in multiple chemical sensitivity and methylation concerns as well. However, according to cutler, mercury detoxification does not require correcting the methylation cycle. The downstream affect of this role means that as your toxic metal burden increases, you sequester more chemical toxins such as BHA, BPA, dioxin, etc.

    I believe, and with poor knowledge to the public, that ALA is extremely dangerous in the wrong situations. I am currently still trying to learn by what means chemically it is responsible for somehow leaching mercury directly from an amalgam. Far fetched though it may be, it seems very certain to happen.
     
  18. Little Bluestem

    Little Bluestem Senescent on the Illinois prairie, USA

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    Does R-Lipoic Acid do the same thing?
     
  19. Lotus97

    Lotus97 Senior Member

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    I was wondering the same thing. Alpha Lipoic Acid is made up of R-Lipoic Acid and S-Lipoic Acid. The R isomer is the active one, but I don't know if it's what is responsible for the chelation properties of ALA.
     
  20. Lotus97

    Lotus97 Senior Member

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    I just had a thought. If Ginkgo Biloba, Vinpocetine, Resveratrol, Grape Seed Extract, and Pterostilbene increase blood flow to the brain wouldn't that also mean they increase blood flow away from the brain too? If this is the case then maybe there isn't as much of a risk as I thought.
     

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