Calcium is the most common mineral in the body and one of the most important. The body needs it to build and repair bones and teeth, help nerves and muscles to function, blood to clot and also help the heart to work. Vitamin D is essential to absorb calcium.
The majority of calcium in the body is stored in bone, the rest is found in the blood. If the calcium result is abnormal, a corrected calcium calculation is carried out to aid further investigation.
Sodium is both an electrolyte and a mineral. It helps regulate the water and electrolyte balance of the body and is important in the operation of nerves and muscles. Sodium levels in the blood are regulated by the kidneys.
Excess sodium in the blood is often due to dehydration but can also indicate that the kidneys are not working properly.
Too little sodium is often caused by fluid retention (oedema) or reflects loss due to vomiting, diarrhoea or excessive sweating.
Potassium is essential in regulating how the heart beats. It also helps move nutrients into cells and waste products out of cells and influences how nerves and muscles communicate.
Raised potassium can be caused by over-supplementation but is also a sign of kidney failure as the kidneys fail to remove excess potassium from the blood.
Low potassium can be caused by dehydration, excessive sweating, diarrhoea and eating disorders such as anorexia and bulimia.
This test measures how much iron is in your blood with the aim of identifying iron deficiency anaemia or iron overload syndrome (haemochromatosis).
The symptoms of too much or too little iron can be similar - fatigue, muscle weakness, moodiness and difficulty concentrating.
A raised result can mean that you have iron overload syndrome, an inherited condition where your body stores too much iron, or that you are over-supplementing or that you have a liver condition.
A low result can mean that you are anaemic or are suffering from gastro-intestinal blood loss (or other blood loss). Anaemia is also very common in pregnant women.
Hair Element Ratios
Calcium / Magnesium
Calcium / Phosphorus
Sodium / Potassium
Zinc / Copper
Zinc / Lead
Zinc / Cadmium
Selenium / Cadmium
Selenium / Mercury