The ZRT Laboratory Blog

The ZRT Blog is an extensive resource for patients and health care providers searching for health and hormone testing information. Here, you can read about ZRT’s cutting edge research, advances in testing, wellness advice, and health industry highlights.

Metal Elements on a Mineral Mission to Mars

Posted by Dr. Alison McAllister on Friday, 12 August

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Have you seen the movie The Martian?  I highly recommend it. The premise is that an astronaut called Mark Watney goes with a team to Mars, gets left behind and has to survive.

I love semi-disaster stories and even better when it's Matt Damon playing the main character. Now, according to the book, Watney had lots of vitamins and mineral supplements to supplement his diet. But if he hadn't had those supplements, there are certain elements that he could have become deficient in that could have led to severe health problems.

Let's explore some of the metal elements - nutritional elements - that you might want to take with you if you were on a mission to Mars.

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Elements Testing – Why Sample Type Matters!

Posted by Ted Zava on Tuesday, 03 May

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Urine, serum, plasma, whole blood, red blood cells, feces, hair, fingernails…the list goes on.

How do you decide what biological sample(s) to use for element analysis? Can results be compared to scientific literature or do they have clinical significance? Is it possible for values to be elevated or low in one sample type and normal in another? Do test results indicate recent intake, body burden, acute toxicity, chronic toxicity, deficiency, or homeostatic regulation?

These are just some of the questions facing a testing laboratory when they want to develop and validate essential and toxic element profiles that will provide clinically meaningful results.

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Understanding Selenium Supplementation

Posted by Margaret Groves on Tuesday, 30 June

Selenium - Element Table

A balance of nutrients is required by our bodies to maintain good health, and selenium (Se) is an important one that often gets overlooked.

This essential element is a required component of the selenoproteins, which include those that are needed to convert thyroid hormone from the inactive to the active form, and several important anti-oxidants.

While optimal selenium levels are imperative for proper thyroid function, abnormally high selenium intake can be toxiccausing gastrointestinal disturbances, changes in nails and hair, weakness, convulsions and decreased cognitive function. So it’s important to understand the ways in which we take in selenium, both in the diet and as supplements.

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Bromine: An Essential Element?

Posted by Ted Zava on Friday, 06 June

bromine_essential_element_6.6.14.jpgAccording to researchers at Vanderbilt University, bromine should be recognized as the 28th essential element for all species, from fruit flies to humans. Study results were published June 5, 2014 in Cell, and demonstrate that without bromine, collagen type IV molecules will not bond together properly to form the structural proteins of connective tissues, leading to disrupted tissue development. 1   

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