Should detox for heavy metals, like mercury, be done while breastfeeding? That is the question we explore today.
Cynthia, I found your information about the connection between Candida and mercury very helpful. I have struggled with Candida and I am sure I have a fair amount of mercury to deal with. However, I am still breastfeeding my son and wondered if I should wait to do detoxing until the breastfeeding is completed? Because I extend breastfeeding until the child is ready to wean, this may be another year away. Is there anything I can do in the mean time? What is your advice on this situation? Thank you for your time and attention– Kristen
First I want to make sure you’re aware I’m not a medical doctor, so I would encourage you to talk with a holistic or alternative medical doctor about this issue as well.
However in my opinion, No, detoxing for heavy metals should not be done while breastfeeding and I believe most natural health professionals would agree with me. Although, they may have a variety of different reasons why.
Right now, your heavy metal toxins are probably lodged in tissues and organs, but detox would stir up the toxins in the body. Depending on what methods you use, will vary on how much, but ultimately the heavy metals will be recirculating in the blood stream and the gut which means they could enter the breast milk and transfer to the child. You may find some health professionals or producers of detox products that might claim it wouldn’t enter the breast milk, but I think that’s too risky.
Anything in your body has the potential to end up in the breast milk. Heavy metals are serious business and are exceptionally toxic to infants. I wouldn’t want to take the chance.
Additionally, detoxing heavy metals is hard on the body, there is likely to be a cleansing or healing crises, where one may have a decrease in their level of health and a variety of disruptive symptoms, both physical and psychological. A woman who is breastfeeding needs to keep her body and mind as healthy and strong as possible for both her and the baby. This is a time when all the energy and nutrients you have will be needed to take care of yourself and the child.
I wouldn’t think about any heavy metal detoxification until after breastfeeding is over. To comfort yourself, I would keep in mind that you have probably carried these metals with you for some time, holding onto them for a little while longer while you get through this phase of your life will probably not impact your health that much more. The damage from the heavy metal toxins is already done. Whether you detox now or a year from now is not going to make a whole lot of difference. The end result should be the same.
At this time, I would focus on nourishing the body with a clean and healthy diet and avoiding any further exposure to heavy metals or other environmental toxins, like pesticides, food additives, etc. Keep in mind that anything you ingest ends up in the breast milk. Foods that may be high in mercury like tuna, shellfish, swordfish, king mackerel and other fish should be avoided, as well as other known sources of mercury like dental fillings, pesticides, floor waxes, fabric softener, hair dyes, bleach, vaccinations, etc. Not only that, the diet should be organic, because infants are particularly vulnerable to pesticide and hormone levels found in most non-organic food. Sugar, caffeine and refined junk food should be avoided as well as they too have many destructive effects on everyone’s health, particularly the nervous system of a little infant. Not only that, all of these factors are detrimental to anyone trying to address Candida.
These are the most beneficial steps that can be taken for both mother and child. Once breastfeeding is over, then you can devote the time and energy needed for detoxification.