Hair Tissue Mineral Analysis

Hair Tissue Mineral Analysis is an indispensable tool in Nutritional Balancing. It allows us to construct corrective health programmes based, very specifically, on an individual’s biochemistry. As biochemistry develops, we can monitor change and adapt a programme accordingly, all at low cost and without any invasive procedures.


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What is hair analysis?

This advanced screening test measures the levels of twenty-one minerals and toxic metals present in a sample of hair. Since the mineral content of your hair reflects the mineral content of your body tissue,  hair analysis provides us with a mineral blueprint of your cellular biochemistry.

Against popular belief, this does not mean that the total load of minerals and toxic metals in the body are measured.

No test can identify all of the mineral deficiencies, heavy metals and mineral excesses that exist deep in your tissues; within your bones, brain and organs, for example. Instead, a 2cm sample of hair cut close to the scalp reflects average cellular metabolic activity, over a three month period of time.

Metabolic Activity – The chemical processes that take place in your body to keep you alive.


Sadly, the nature of hair analysis is rarely understood, and many will claim to be experts despite total incomprehension of this tool. Whilst a number of physicians are becoming aware of natural healing methods, they often apply them in a haphazard manner, which can make matters much worse.

Yet through correct interpretation of a hair analysis, it is possible to construct a metabolic picture of the body. This conveys the efficiency and efficacy of different metabolic patterns, influencing how you think, act, feel and heal. In other words, it demonstrates how your body is functioning and its ability to respond to stress. To our knowledge, no other simple test exists that can relay this crucial information.

Using hair analysis

Understanding these patterns makes it possible to assess the likelihood of many health conditions and to guide their correction. It enables bespoke design of nutritional programmes, determining which nutrients and foods are appropriate, and in what quantities. Because of its mathematical nature, hair analysis can determine food proportions with great accuracy, as well as specific supplement dosage.

Further to this, repeating hair analysis over time and comparing results with previous tests will demonstrate how well the body is progressing and what adjustments need be made to maintain optimal development.

In order to obtain this information, the understanding must go far beyond the identification of single mineral levels. We must recognise the relationships and interactions between minerals, communicated  clearly through mineral ratios and metabolic patterns.

What is a metabolic pattern?

A metabolic pattern is a combination of mineral levels and/or mineral ratios.

A general rule is that metabolic patterns are the most important factors to consider when interpreting a hair analysis, followed by mineral ratios and finally, single mineral levels. The science of mineral balancing is almost always aimed at improving major metabolic patterns and not a single mineral.

By combining mineral levels, ratios and patterns on a hair analysis, we can assess the following in detail:

Oxidation patterns.  Dr. George Watson discovered that some people burn food at a faster rate than normal, and some at a slower rate. Knowing a person’s oxidation rate, as he called it, can help decide which foods are most needed, and which nutrients would be most helpful to restore balance. Giving the wrong nutrients can make your health problems worse. Hair analysis can be used to determine an individual’s oxidation rate with mathematical precision.

Autonomic nervous system patterns.  A properly performed hair analysis can assess many aspects of the functioning of the autonomic nervous system. This is a critical imbalance today in thousands of people and leads to hundreds of symptoms, from digestive disturbance and trouble eliminating toxic metals, to sleep disturbances, blood sugar problems and even cancers.

Energy patterns.  Having an adequate energy level is essential for health. All body activities, including healing, depend upon adequate energy synthesis. Hair analysis can be used to assess the efficiency of the body’s energy system and to recommend nutrients and foods that will assist in rebuilding that system.

Glandular, organ and tissue patterns.  Levels and ratios of tissue minerals relate to the activity of specific organs and glands. By calculating ratios on a hair analysis, the function of major glands and organs can be assessed, often long before abnormalities appear through x-rays and blood tests.

Dietary patterns.  Hair analysis can be used to quickly screen for hypoglycaemia and diabetes. Hair testing can usually guide a practitioner to correct Type 2 diabetes and some Type 1 diabetes without the need for most drugs. Mineral imbalances and chronic infections are often involved with these conditions.

Toxic metal patterns.  Toxic Metals are a serious problem today, contributing to many metabolic disorders and distressing symptoms including fatigue, infections, high blood pressure, heart disease, cancer, diabetes, dementia & Alzheimer’s. While routine blood tests cannot detect chronic heavy metal poisoning, Hair Tissue Mineral Analysis is one of the few methods approved by the Environmental Protection Agency for detecting toxic metals in the body.

Trend patterns. One of the most useful concepts in healthcare is the ability to identify disease trends before they occur, so that preventative action can be taken. Thirty or more disease trends can be identified from a correctly interpreted hair analysis.

Monitoring progress.  Symptom changes alone are not sufficient to determine whether a person is progressing on a healing programme. Hair analysis, however, can detect subtle changes in body chemistry, a wonderful benefit that enables careful monitoring of healing progress.

Stress patterns.  A superb capacity of hair analysis is its potential to assess stress within the body. Through correct interpretation, it is possible to uncover some twenty to thirty stress response patterns and determine the body’s current stage of stress. This type of analysis and interpretation is based on the stress theory of disease, first put forth by Hans Selye, MD some 60 years ago, yet still widely ignored in the medical profession. It is extremely useful, helping to reverse many types of pathology that do not respond well to other methods of care, be that traditional medical care or holistic healthcare.

Psychological and emotional patterns.  Biochemical imbalances can contribute to many mental and emotional conditions. Hair analysis is outstanding in that it allows us to predict, explain and propose nutritional solutions for these complaints. Common conditions include anxiety, depression, hyperactivity, phobias, insomnia, panic attacks, ADD, ADHD, autism, schizophrenia, dementia, violence, bipolar disorder and more.

Movement patterns.  These are related to a person’s lifestyle and current activities; their life path and movement or progress through life. They can be extremely helpful in counselling a person, promoting understanding of both physical and emotional illness.

Why is hair analysis superior to blood tests?

Whilst blood tests will always be valuable in determining a number of parameters, they are incapable of providing the information that one can interpret from a Hair Tissue Mineral Analysis. The reasons for this are:

  • Mineral levels in the blood are ten times less than they are in the tissues, making measurement more difficult.

  • The body maintains blood levels within very narrow parameters at the expense of cellular health. This means that problems will not show up in the blood until they have reached a critical stage of development, perhaps years after their potential detection through hair analysis.

  • Blood tests are subject to daily fluctuations due to foods eaten the previous day, emotional states and so on. Hair analysis is not affected by such rapid changes and therefore provides a more dependable, long-term metabolic blueprint.

  • Toxic metals are easier to detect in the hair than in the blood. They are not found in high concentrations in the blood, unless the test is performed immediately after an acute exposure. Most toxic metals accumulate in the soft tissues, including the hair, as the body works to move them to locations where they will do less damage.

Analytical Research Labs

To ensure accuracy in hair analysis, it is imperative that samples are NOT washed at the laboratory and  that their interpretation is in line with Dr. Paul Eck’s methodology.

At Hair Diagnostics, all Hair Tissue Mineral Analyses are performed by Analytical Research Labs, Inc. (ARL) in the USA. This is the laboratory that Dr. Eck established himself, in 1974, and one of only two laboratories in the world that do not wash hair samples for testing. Washing hair samples at the laboratory has been shown to dramatically reduce test reliability.

As one of the most respected and experienced leaders in the Hair Tissue Mineral Analysis field, ARL has been setting professional standards for hair testing and interpretation laboratories for decades. As pioneers in the field of Hair Tissue Mineral Analysis interpretation, ARL was the first laboratory to integrate the factors of stress, oxidation types, mineral relationships, homeostatic states and natural healing principles into this science. It was the first laboratory to recognise the importance of hair mineral ratios, to determine oxidation rates and to identify and correlate more than thirty metabolic disease trends using hair analysis.

Interpretations of mineral levels and ratios are measured against an ideal standard of health at ARL, rather than a vast average range, as used by other laboratories working in hair analysis. ARL continues to lead the field of Hair Tissue Mineral Analysis today.

Please note: Provided sufficient hair is available for a second sample, ARL will automatically retest any reading that falls outside of expected ranges.

The Foundation of Nutritional Balancing

Thanks to Hair Tissue Mineral Analysis, every aspect of a Nutritional Balancing programme can be tailored to the individual. This includes diet plans, supplementation, detox protocols and lifestyle recommendations. Find out more about the programme…