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Aluminum appears to be a copper antagonist as is cadmium.  In the hair analyses that I've seen from people with hyperthyroidism, usually either cadmium or aluminum levels are high.  This supports the hypothesis that there are multiple ways that copper can become depleted and lead to hyperthyroidism.

Aluminum is an essential nutrients, but in our society there seems to be a much greater chance of getting too much aluminum rather than too little. Here are some common sources of aluminum that you need to avoid if your hair test shows high aluminum: antiperspirants and underarm deodorants, aluminum cookware (especially dangerous if acid foods like tomatoes are cooked), beverages from aluminum cans, municipal drinking water which often has aluminum compounds added, baking powders, bleached flour, processed cheese, some table salts, some antacids, and breathing in dust when sanding with aluminum oxide sandpaper.

Aluminum file (authors and titles will be added):

"The effect of repeated intraperitoneal administration of deferoxamine, citric, malic and succinic acids on the distribution and excretion of aluminum was determined in male Swiss mice which had previously received aluminum nitrate intraperitoneally at a daily dose of 0.27 mmol/kg for five weeks. Chelating agents were administered for two weeks at doses approximately equal to one-fourth of their respective LD50. Treatment with DFOA, citric, malic or succinic acids significantly increased the fecal and urinary excretion of aluminum and reduced the concentration of aluminum found in various organs and tissues, with citric acid being the most effective. In sight of these results, citric, malic or succinic acids may be considered as alternatives to deferoxamine in aluminum toxicity. However, further investigations are required previous to the possible use of these compounds in human aluminum poisoning." malic acid for aluminum toxicity.doc

"All the dietary constituents significantly increased the aluminum levels in bone, whereas brain aluminum concentrations were also raised by the intake of lactic, gluconic, malic, citric, and oxalic acids. The levels of aluminum found in spleen were significantly increased by gluconic and ascorbic acids, whereas gluconic and oxalic acids also raised the concentrations of aluminum found in kidneys. Because of the wide presence and consumption of the above dietary constituents, in order to prevent aluminum accumulation and toxicity we suggest a drastic limitation of human exposure to aluminum." malic acid increases brain levels of aluminum.doc

"Aluminum induces impairment of bone formation by the inhibition of osteoblastic function. Magnesium enhances bone turnover by through the stimulation of osteoclastic function. Zinc regulates secretion of calcitonin from thyroid grand and influences on bone turnover. Gallium suppresses bone turnover in humoral hypercalcemia of malignancy in a similar mechanism as aluminum and cadmium. Copper induces low bone turnover by both suppressions of osteoblastic and osteoclastic functions. Iodine as the hormonal forms of thyroxine and triiodothyronine enhances bone turnover." aluminum interferes with bone formation.doc

"High dietary aluminum seemed most toxic when dietary magnesium was low enough to cause a marked growth depression (100 micrograms/g). High dietary aluminum elevated the spleen weight/body weight and liver weight/body weight ratios in magnesium-deficient, but not in magnesium-adequate rats. High dietary aluminum depressed the concentrations of magnesium in bone more markedly in magnesium-deficient than adequate rats. On the other hand, aluminum seemed most toxic when dietary boron was not low. Aluminum more markedly depressed growth in boron-supplemented than boron-deprived rats. In the boron-deprived rats fed 400 micrograms magnesium/g of diet, high dietary aluminum (1,000 micrograms/g) apparently was beneficial, in experiments 2 and 3, hematocrit, and hemoglobin were actually normalized by high dietary aluminum. Plasma magnesium was significantly depressed by high dietary aluminum when the manganese supplement was 50 micrograms/g diet but not when it was 20 micrograms/g diet. On the other hand, growth was more markedly depressed by high dietary aluminum in boron-supplemented rats when the manganese supplement was 20 rather than 50 micrograms/g diet. The findings indicate that the response of rats to high dietary aluminum is influenced by magnesium, boron, and manganese nutriture." aluminum toxicity affected by Mg,B,Mn.doc


Title Severe copper deficiency due to excessive use of an antacid combined with pyloric stenosis.
Author van Kalmthout PM; Engels LG; Bakker HH; Burghouts JT
Source Dig Dis Sci, 27(9):859-61 1982 SepLanguage Eng Unique Identifier 82261179

Literature regarding the biochemistry of aluminum and eight similar ions is reviewed. Close and hitherto unknown similarities were found. A hypothetical model is presented for the metabolism, based on documented direct observations of Al3+ and analogies from other ions. Main characteristics are low intestinal absorption, rapid urinary excretion, and slow tissue uptake, mostly in skeleton and reticuloendothelial cells. Intracellular Al3+ is probably first confined in the lysosomes but then slowly accumulates in the cell nucleus and chromatin. Large, long-lived cells, e.g., neurons, may be the most liable to this accumulation. In heterochromatin, Al3+ levels can be found comparable to those used in leather tannage. It is proposed that an accumulation may take place at a subcellular level without any significant increase in the corresponding tissue concentration. The possible effects of this accumulation are discussed. As Al3+ is neurotoxic, the brain metabolism is most interesting. The normal and the lethally toxic brain levels of Al3+ are well documented and differ only by a factor of 3-10. The normal brain uptake of Al3+ is estimated from data on intestinal uptake of Al3+ and brain uptake of radionuclides of similar ions administered intravenously. The uptake is very slow, 1 mg in 36 years, and is consistent with an assumption that Al3+ taken up by the brain cannot be eliminated and is therefore accumulated. The possibility that Al3+ may cause or contribute to some specific diseases, most of them related to aging, is discussed with the proposed metabolic picture in mind.aluminum--metabolism and possible health effects.doc

Studies were conducted in order to assess the level of aluminium (Al) in samples of Indian tea, coffee, toothpaste, paan masala (mouth freshener) and baking powder. Leaching of Al from cookware while preparing tea and coffee was also studied. Experiments were also conducted to study the sequential leaching of Al from cookware by preparing tea and coffee in the presence of standard size Al sheets (coupons). A small amount of Al was found to have leached from coupons during preparation of tea. Tea leaves, were found to be a rich source of Al and a maximum of 2.2% Al is extracted in tea infusions. Coffee powder on the other hand was not found to be a rich source of Al. Baking powder was found to be a rich source of Al and 1 kg of cake prepared with 1-3 teaspoon of baking powder may contain 2-12.7 mg of Al in each serving (25 g). Toothpaste also contains a significant quantity of Al, more so, when packed in Al tubes. Ingestion pattern of Al from these items by humans is also discussed.aluminum in tea.doc

Nutrition Almanac, pg. 100: "Aluminum is easily absorbed by the body and is accumulated in the arteries. Highest concentrations are found in the lungs, liver, thyroid, and brain." "Average amounts in the diet do not interfere with the absorption or utilization of calcium, phosphorus, zinc, copper, selenium, iron, or magnesium. Fluoride may be interfered with, but more tests must be made."

Carl C. Pfeiffer, Ph.D., M.D.


Many patients have a low blood histamine (histapenia) & high serum copper level. Low histamine patients are typically overstimulated with thoughts racing through their minds making normal ideation difficult. Low histamine children are hyperactive while often healthy in other respects. Serum Cu levels in these patients are abnormally high. The normal level of serum Cu is about 100 mcg%. Since Cu is a brain stimulant and destroys histamine, the elevated serum (and presumably brain Cu) level probably accounts for many symptoms, including the low blood histamine level. The treatment Rx consists of the administration of zinc, manganese, vit. C, niacin, vit. B-12, and folic acid. Folic acid in conjunction with B-12 injections raises blood histamine while lowering the degree of symptomatology. Zn allows for the normal storage of histamine in both the blood cells and the brain. Zn and manganese increase the urinary excretion of copper. Patients with loss of memory frequently have high blood AL levels above 20 ppb. As magnesium, zn and vit C. are given the high blood AL level decreases to normal (less than 10 ppb) and memory improves. Accumulation of AL occurs in various human tissues including blood, brain, liver & bone. Several independent research reports now indicate that a high AL intake may have an adverse effect on memory in the adult (Alzheimer's D.), & may be a factor in learning disabilities & behavioral problems in younger people. Humans do not need AL for any purpose. Individuals with elevated blood AL levels, memory loss & those frequently exposed to AL compounds will find it beneficial to minimize or eliminate all AL sources.

From the bulletin board, February 27, 2002:

Copper anemia from ALUMINIUM


From: Mike
Remote User:


Hello fellow freedom fighters. God bless us with wisdom and freedom from sickness. I thought I should worn anyone who uses Aluminum Oxide sand paper for woodworking, etc. I have always been very careful not to use any aluminum housewares, toothpaste, anti-perspirants, packaged food products, food additives (Watch for baking powder in baked goods). The one fiery dart that the enemy got me with was sand paper. Aluminum Oxide is just one kind of many types of sand paper on the market. All types of sand paper should be used with dust masks, air filters and protective clothing. (Change and wash your clothing before you take of the dust mask).

Johns article on Aluminum is great. Check it out.

John; I do have questions on how to get rid of Aluminum once it is in the system.

Should I stop taking boron? Increase Magnesium, Zinc, Vit.C, Copper?

Here are some of l-l-2001 test results. All symptoms are now gone.

Thanks John for your compassion to help others.

Most symptoms were gone within a few weeks of using the Hyper supplement recommendation.

My hair test showed very high Aluminum, very Low Copper, very low Selenium, Very high Iron, very high Calcium and Magnesium, low Cobalt, low Molybdenum, low Lithium, low Boron, high potassium / normal sodium. All other minerals and toxins were normal.

Thyroid tests= normal according to Doctor. Are they? reference range TSH = 3.2 0.40 - 5.00 t4 = 10.0 5.0 - 12.0 thyroglobulin Auto AB = <0.3 <1.0 Thyroid per uxicase auto AB = 0.5 <2.0 free T-3 = 2.7 2.3 - 4.2 free T-4 = 1.2 0.8 - 1.6

symptoms =fatigue, high heart rate, tremors, anxiety, Joint pain. high blood pressure (135-100).

The doctor said there is nothing wrong with you, except you are under stress.

I think I was Aluminum toxic, which used up my copper, selenium reserve.

Maybe John can explain this better.

Hi Mike,

That is really great information about the use of aluminum oxide sandpaper. I just added it to the aluminum file and you'll see it next time I publish. I don't believe that any nutrition book has mentioned that source, and I, as a woodworker, never thought of it either. It's funny, we work so hard avoiding the trace amounts of some toxic only to expose ourselves to a major source without awareness. I'm glad you discovered that. It might help a lot of people.

I sell wood supplies and abrasives to the wood working industry. I was always surprised by the number of cabinet makers who get hernias. Perhaps this is the answer. The aluminum in the sandpaper decreases their copper.

Since aluminum is a light element, I believe that it's pretty easy to get it back down to normal levels. One thing that I recently noticed is that magnesium (element 12) is right next to aluminum (element 13) in the Periodic Table of Elements. I missed this for years because the Periodic Table is distorted (like the Mercator Map of the world, the Periodic Table would be better represented in three dimensions rather than two). 

The elements right next to aluminum are magnesium (to the left), boron (above), silicon (right), and gallium (below). Each of these should be good antagonists for aluminum. I would suggest taking adequate amounts of these. Silicon is found as silica or horsetail extract. Gallium isn't available yet as a supplement, although I acquired some and experimented with it. Indium is right below gallium (and therefore two rows below aluminum) and, interestingly, just to the right of cadmium. This position suggests that indium might be a key element in reducing both cadmium and aluminum. But, alas, indium is not available as a supplement either. Both gallium and indium, however, are available as trace elements in a good trace element supplement.

The relationship of copper to aluminum is interesting, because they do not appear to be right next to each other in the Periodic Table. However, if you use a little freedom with the Table, you could easily see that aluminum and magnesium could be positioned just above copper in the table. Since there are close relationships between magnesium and copper and aluminum and copper, perhaps we need to think of these three minerals as all right next to each other.

The balance between aluminum, magnesium, and copper is a very critical balance that affects thyroid health. Excess aluminum is often seen in the hair of hypers and when copper is replenished, aluminum levels invariably go back down. So the key to getting aluminum back into balance is probably copper along with magnesium. Aluminum toxicity has to be considered a primary way that copper gets depleted, and hence a primary cause of the copper deficiency diseases: collagen failure, hernias, high cholesterol, heart disease, aneurysms, and hyperthyroidism. 

So it's possible that aluminum was the beginning of your problems. Once the high aluminum depleted copper, this created other imbalances, like the high iron. High iron, in turn, causes low cobalt, etc.