Description and Chemistry
Copper is a trace mineral that is an essential trace element found in all body tissue
Assists in the formation of hemaglobin, iron metabolism and absorption.
Protein metabolism and in healing processes.
Copper helps the body to oxidise vitamin C and works with this vitamin in the formation of elastin.
Copper is needed for the production of RNA and is necessary for proper bone formation and maintenance, also required for the synthesis of phospholipids (formation of the myelin sheaths around nerves) and aids myelin in skin pigmentation. Black people have more copper than white people.
Absorption and Storage
Approximately 30% of ingested copper is used by the body, absorption takes place in the stomach and upper intestinal tract, most dietary copper is excreted in the bile and faeces.
Copper is stored in the tissues with the highest concentrations in the liver and brain then the kidneys and heart.
The foetal liver at birth has 7 times more copper than an adult and since copper is a brain stimulant this excess may be a factor in hyperactivity in children.
This is rare, usually malnourished or generic disorders: Anaemia, oedema, irritability, restlessness, brittle bones, weak red blood cells, general weakness and malaise, impaired respiration and skin sores.
The NRC recommends DDI of 2 milligrams in adults.
High copper levels can result in serious physical and mental illness. Paranoid and hallucinatory schizophrenia, hypertension, stuttering, autism, child hyperactivity, toxaemia in pregnancy, senility, functional hypoglycaemia, post-partum psychosis or depression ( due to high serum copper levels elevated by oestrogen which rises during pregnancy and xan take 2-3 months to lower after birth).
Wilsons disease (copper absorbed in excess diffuses into the tissues, may accumulate in the brain and liver producing severe mental illness and death).
Copper suppresses zinc levels dangerously, bringing on fatal conditions.
Copper piping and some well waters have high copper levels which are dangerous if it is drinking and bathing water.
Hahnemann (father of homoeopathy) Quote: What a poison can cause that it can cure.
Loathing, nausea, fits of anguish, vomiting, troublesome burning of the mouth, unsuccessful rertching, violent pains in the stomach, bloody diarrhoea, constant uneasiness, sleeplessness, exhaustion, weak and small pulse, cold sweat, paleness of face, pains in the entire body, tingling, palpatations, vertigo, chest constriction, hurried breathing, haemoptysis, hiccoughs, loss of consciousness, wandering look – also convulsions, rage, apoplexy, paralysis, death.
Medical and therapeutic Uses
Adequate zinc and manganese helps keep the copper ratio balanced within the body as well as vitamin C and B6.
Anaemia, leukemia, osteoporosis, rheumatism, arthritis, baldness, greying of the hair, bedsores, oedema, lethargy, passivity, restlessness, excitability and non-acceptance of oneself.
Helps increase circulatory functions, used to cleanse wounds and fight bacterial infection and stimulates metabolic processes. Anti-inflammatory effect.
How to lower copper levels
Zinc – displaces copper
Manganese – works with zinc
Molybdenum – rids the body of copper and is used for non-correctable anaemia
Vitamin B6 – works with zinc and manganese
Vitamin C – collates copper
Good Food Sources
Liver, lamb and xalf higher than adult. Whole grain products, almonds, brazil nuts, leafy green vegetables, dried legumes, seafood especially shell fish, wheat germ, yeast, soybeans, nettles, chickweed, kelp, red clover, parsley, curry powder.