Welcome back to our More Than Healthy weekly health tip. This is Tip #62, How to Interpret Personal Immune System Support Indicators in your hair analysis report.
This year, the first tip of each month will be dedicated to explaining about each page of the hair analysis to help those of you that have your report be able to understand it better. There is such a wealth of information available on every page! And this page is especially important. If you have your report, you’ll want to turn to this page (usually page 5 in your report) and use it as a reference as you read this post.
There is a LOT of information on just this one page. The chart on this page has different areas of concern highlighted in different colors. There will also be a score at the end of each row and a total at the bottom. These scores matter – and we’ll talk about what they mean and why later in this post.
When it comes to our health, Immune System Support makes all the difference
This page is a great example of the incredible value of hair analysis testing. The indicators on this page give you information specific to you as to how you can fortify your immune system. A strong immune system protects us from the worst effects of the many viral and environmental impacts our bodies are subjected to every single day. Boosting your immune system with exactly what it needs is essential for optimal health. It’s how we achieve vitality and well-being.
No two people will ever have the same results on this page, because everybody’s immune system varies dramatically. What’s going on inside each of us is based on so many factors: diet, environmental pollutants, metabolic stressors, and genetics.
The information on this page gives us a roadmap of how to boost our immune system and live a healthier, better life.
Areas of importance
The Personal Immune System Support Indicators page is broken down into nine areas of importance. These areas include the following:
- Vitamins Markers
- Minerals Markers
- Antioxidants Markers
- Fatty Acids Markers
- Amino Acids
- System Supports
- Environmental Stressors
- Resistance Indicators
- Food Restrictions
We will cover each of these areas more in-depth below.
How to interpret your scores
Scoring of your Personal Immune System Support Indicators is basically like golf. The lower the number the better. In fact, you want the lowest number you can get!
For each row, there is a number value to the right. Your total score is reported at the bottom of the page. Scores are divided into the following categories:
|35+ Total Value High Support||High Concern
(areas you need to prioritize and address quickly)
|20-34 Total Value Moderate Support||Moderate Support
(areas of concern, but can wait until after you address high support areas.)
|1-19 Total Value Maintenance Support||Well done! Your main focus is maintaining systems.|
Areas that are highest priority will be color coded as well. These are the areas where you should focus your efforts first.
Most of our clients, including David, who has worked so hard on his health the past years, see a score that is over 35. It is very rare that we see a score that falls in that under 19 range. I share that so you know how normal it is to have multiple areas of concern.
Your score is knowledge…Knowledge is power!
Whatever your score, this knowledge should be hopeful. It should be empowering! It’s okay to have a score like that, because this score also tells you exactly what you need to do to get to that healthy range of under 19. And, even if you do have a score that falls in that lowest category, there are still things you can do to get that score as low as possible. Our health is always worth working on!
Let’s take a look at each of the Personal Immune System Support Indicators and what they really mean. I always like to start with the Environmental Stressors and Resistance Indicators, because these impact all of the other areas so much. If you have a problem in one of these areas, the efforts you make in other areas might not even make a difference. So I always start here.
Environmental Stressors include toxic metals, chemicals and hydrocarbons, and electrosensitivity or radiation. Let’s take a closer look at each of these. If any of these are an area of concern, they will show up in red on your hair analysis report.
We are surrounded by heavy metals. Arsenic, lead, mercury, iron, and others are all around us. They’re in the ground, in the water we drink, and in products we use every day. They become toxic when we have too many of them, and that’s far more common than you might know.
A common source of toxic metals is your cookware. The dishes and pans you use to cook your food each day can leach dangerous chemicals like PTFE, nickel, aluminum, and copper. Plastics leach hundreds of BPA. All of this can lead to serious health problems. We have a lot more information on this topic in our blog post, Using the Right Cookware for Your Health.
There is a whole list of chemicals that affect our bodies negatively that need to be addressed. The list includes things like plastics, solvents, industrial pollution, perfumes, rubber, antifreeze, cleaning supplies, weed killer, paint, and a whole lot more. We’re surrounded by these toxins, and we don’t even realize what they’re doing to our systems.
Hydrocarbons have been called the “deadly poison” found in everyone’s home. They are organic chemical compounds that are naturally-occurring and form the basis of crude oil, natural gas, coal, and other important energy sources. Hydrocarbons form a broad group of chemicals found almost everywhere, including kerosene, gasoline, and furniture oil.
In my latest hair analysis report, I showed chemicals and hydrocarbons highlighted. The big one for me is chlorine in my hot tub. I didn’t want to give up my hot tub time, so I’ve gone to a new system that uses about half as much chlorine. I’ve started getting in my sauna after I hot tub to help remove the toxins from my body. I’m hoping my next hair analysis will show that I’ve been able to mitigate some of the negative effects of getting in my hot tub because I really love all the positive things I get from it.
Electrosensitivity or radiation comes from EMFs. EMFs, or electromagnetic fields, are another area that we’re all exposed to everyday. It’s nearly impossible to mitigate all our exposures. We’re literally inundated with invisible energy and radiation from sources that might surprise you – everything from cell phones and Wi-Fi to our electrical appliances and smart thermostats. Even lighting and baby monitors shed EMFs.
We’ve got a very thorough and informative post on reducing EMFs in your home in our More Than Healthy weekly tip repository, so be sure to go check it out to learn more about EMFs. We’ve started taking spirulina to help with it. In my last hair analysis it’s no longer showing up as a major factor, so the things I’m doing seem to be working.
High priority Resistance Indicators will show up in orange. These include molds/spores, viruses, fungi, and parasites, all of which are incredibly common.
Viruses are tiny germs made of genetic material inside of a protein coating. They cause familiar infectious diseases such as the common cold, flu, and warts. They also cause severe illnesses such as HIV/AIDS, Ebola, and COVID-19.
Viruses invade living, normal cells and use those cells to multiply and produce other viruses like themselves. This can kill, damage, or change the cells and make you sick. But, you may not always get sick from a virus. Your immune system may be able to fight it off. There are also long-term viruses that can harbor in your cells without you even knowing they are there. We’ve seen clients who have had Covid who now have a long-term virus in their system.
Fungi are a group of spore-producing organisms that feed on organic matter. This includes molds, yeast, mushrooms, and toadstools. Fungi are everywhere. Often, they are too small to see. They live outdoors in soil and on plants, as well as indoors on surfaces and in the air. They also live on skin and inside our bodies. Fungi grow well in warm, moist places like shoes, socks, swimming pools, locker rooms, etc.
There are millions of species of fungi, but only a few hundred of these can make us sick.
Common examples of fungal infections include athlete’s foot, yeast infections, and jock itch. But, it is also very possible that you can have a fungal infection with no visible symptoms. Mild fungal skin infections are very common and can look like a rash. Fungal infections in the lung are more serious and cause symptoms that mimic other illnesses like pneumonia.
When you think of parasites, you might think of third-world countries. But parasitic infections are very common here in the U.S. as well, infecting millions of people. Often, we have no idea that we have a parasite. (Read more about this in our blog post, The Health Benefits of a Quarterly Cleanse.)
The CDC has identified five parasites they call “neglected parasitic infections,” neglected because so few of us even realize we’re hosting these microsized freeloaders. The good news is that most parasites can be treated and/or prevented. But, you can only treat a parasite if you know that you have one! They often go undetected and untreated simply because their host doesn’t realize they’re infected.
Other resistance indicators are mold and spores, both of which can have such a negative effect on our health. Statistics say that 50-70% of homes have some form of mold or spores in them, and that 28% of the population is sensitive to it.
This often shows up with allergy-type symptoms such as runny nose, watery eyes, wheezing, coughing, and even asthma attacks. But other symptoms of mold can include:
- Chronic fatigue
- Joint pain
- Frequent urination
- Blurry vision
The connection between mold and depression is especially concerning. Studies show that about 40% of residents living in mold have an overall risk for depression averaging 34-44% higher than residents in mold-free dwellings.
Many of our clients’ hair analyses are flagged for mold/spores. It’s pretty obvious that spores are in the air, and we’re breathing them in. It’s important to look for where they could be coming from in our homes to see if we can mitigate the source in addition to getting it out of our system.
Why these indicators are highest priority
If you have one or more of these areas highlighted, you’ve got to work on these first, as they block progress in other areas.
Here’s an example of that. In my first hair analysis, it showed I had a fungus. I was also deficient in protein synthesis and B vitamins, even though I eat plenty of healthy protein and get plenty of B vitamins through healthy foods and supplements. However, once I addressed the fungus, I saw improvement in both other areas.
I’m not sure if the fungus blocks the vitamins and minerals from absorbing in your system, or if it uses the vitamins and minerals so you don’t get to. But I do know that until the fungus is cleared up, the other things don’t assimilate properly.
Let’s say someone’s hair analysis shows they have a fungus as well as low levels of minerals like zinc or iron. I wouldn’t recommend that they increase those minerals while they have a fungus. What if they already have plenty of zinc, and the fungus is just blocking it from assimilating in their body? Then they start supplementing with zinc and iron. If they get rid of the fungus, they could end up with too much zinc and iron, which is equally problematic. We have informational posts on both zinc and iron which explain all of this well, so be sure to check those out.
In David’s hair analysis, his Resistance Indicators showed he had a parasite and a virus. Once he addressed those with a cleanse, he saw other areas improve.
After we look at Environmental Stressors and Resistance indicators, we then go to the Vitamin markers listed at the top of the page. This section will tell you specifically which vitamins you’re deficient in, including:
- Vitamin A1
- Vitamin B1, B2, B5, B6, B9, B12
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin D3
- Vitamin E
The B vitamins are a major focus, along with D3, vitamin C, and E. Your report is color coded. If any of these are highlighted in a blue/green color, then you can find other pages of the report in that same color, which will tell you foods to eat to increase that vitamin in your system. In most reports, page 12 will tell you how to get more of the vitamins highlighted for you on page 5.
If you’re significantly deficient in any of these vitamins, then you may need to supplement that vitamin for 90 days. Then after those 90 days, you can retest to see if you’re at sufficient levels. It’s so amazing to be able to remove the guesswork, to know for sure!
We’ve done several videos and blog posts on these vitamins and the importance of having the right amount. Check those out here:
The Health Benefits of Getting Enough Vitamin B
Increase Vitamin D to Healthy Levels
The Health Benefits of the Right Amount of Vitamin C
These posts have great suggestions about how you can get more of these essential vitamins in your diet.
The next area on the Personal Immune System Support Indicators page is called Mineral Markers. Sufficient minerals are essential for good health. The minerals listed include:
Just like vitamins, this section tells you if you are deficient in one or more of these. If any area is colored in blue, then that shows a deficiency. You’ll want to look at the page on minerals to see the foods you should eat to improve that mineral in your body.
We’ve also done numerous videos and posts about minerals. If you are deficient in any, I highly encourage you to refer to our informative blog repository. We are also constantly adding more to our library of tips. Here are links to some of the posts we’ve done on minerals:
The Health Benefits of Getting the Right Amount of Zinc
The Health Benefits of Getting the Right Amount of Iron
The Health Benefits of Getting the Right Amount of Selenium
Using the Right Cookware for Your Health
Also, just like with vitamins, you’ll want to get the majority of your minerals from food if you can. These posts have great recommendations for how to do that. Then if you’re still deficient after you retest at 90 days, you may have to supplement to get your levels to sufficiency.
The next area is the Antioxidants Markers. If there are any colored in purple you will want to pay attention to those.
Simply put, free radicals are highly unstable molecules that are naturally formed when you exercise and when your body converts food into energy. Your body can also be exposed to free radicals from a variety of environmental sources, such as cigarette smoke, air pollution, and sunlight. These free radicals cause “oxidative stress,” a process that can trigger cell damage.
Oxidative stress is thought to play a role in a variety of diseases including cancer, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and eye diseases. It’s also scientifically proven to play a major role in every negative side effect of aging, like wrinkles and grey hair.
Antioxidants are key to anti-aging and staying healthy. Research shows that antioxidant molecules have been shown to counteract oxidative stress in laboratory experiments.
Examples of antioxidants include vitamins C and E, selenium, carotenoids such as beta-carotene, lycopene, lutein, and zeaxanthin. Fruits and vegetables are rich sources of antioxidants.
We’ve written a lot about the health value of antioxidants and how to get more of them. Check out some of these posts:
The Health Benefits of the Right Amount of Vitamin C
The Benefits of Adding Healthy Herbs and Good Seasonings to Your Meals
The Health Benefits of the Right Amount of Coenzyme Q10
Fatty Acid Markers
Fatty Acid markers are next. If you have any in a light orange color then you’re deficient in that area. This could mean you’re not getting enough health fats in your diet. Or, that your body isn’t absorbing them correctly. It also may be that you’re eating too much unhealthy fat. Getting more Omega-3 and 9 helps all of the above.
During the digestion process, the body breaks down fats into fatty acids, which are then absorbed into the blood. Fatty acids are the building blocks of the fat in our bodies and in the foods that we eat. They have many important functions in the body, including energy storage. When needed, the body can use fatty acids to fuel the cells if not enough glucose is available.
Most of my clients just have to add Omega 3 & 9 supplements to their diet. You can get healthy fatty acids through diet, but you might not want to add mackerel, sardines, and herring to your diet. Many of my clients are eating salmon and trout occasionally, but not enough to move this marker. So this is an area where we do suggest supplementing. It’s an easy supplement to add, and Costco has a really good one that’s cheaper than eating more salmon. We recommend taking four Kirkland Signature Natural Fish Oil Concentrate with Omega-3 Fatty Acids each day.
Check out our informative post on this topic, The Health Benefits of Omega-3 Fish Oil, for more information.
System Support refers to the previous page of your hair analysis. We went over this page in detail last month. You’ll definitely want to check out that post, How to Interpret the System Support Energetic Indicators in the Hair Analysis Report. It breaks down every section for you, just like we’ve done for this page.
If anything is light green, it’s in addition to what you learned on the previous page, System Support Indicators. I always tell my clients if it’s an easy one like liquid hydration, then definitely add more water. Otherwise, just focus on the things on the previous page.
The last area on this page is Food Restrictions. It will be highlighted in a darker green. These are foods you want to avoid for the next 90 days until your next hair analysis. There is another page that lists 10 more food restrictions that we’ll discuss in a future post.
A wealth of information in Personal Immune System Support Indicators
Wow! Can you believe how much information you get on just this one page of your hair analysis report? It’s incredibly empowering! I just love that we can see, right there on the page, exactly what’s “going on in there.” No more hit-and-miss guesswork! With hair analysis, we can find out WHY things are happening. And then we can figure out WHAT to do to fix or prevent problems.
Be sure to come back next month as we continue this explanation with an overview of how to interpret the Gut Support Indicators page. There are so many other benefits of understanding your hair analysis. We hope this helps you really utilize the information you’ve got in your hair analysis paperwork.
More Than Healthy Hair Analysis
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Thanks for joining us, and we’ll see you next week.