The chelation (pronounced “kelation”) is primarily a medical approach to detoxify the body of harmful minerals and metals. From the Greek word “khele”, which means “claws” or “tongs”, chelation is, more precisely, the heavy metal chelation process by which an organic substance (the chelating agent) binds to ionized minerals or metals (electrically charged) such as iron, calcium, lead, copper, etc. The resulting complex is stable, inactive, non-toxic and soluble, and can easily be removed by the urinary tract.
Intravenous chelation is a medical practice commonly used in cases of intoxication of certain heavy metals , including lead, and the removal of harmful radioactive substances.
In addition to this classic application for detoxification, some therapists claim that chelation could also be helpful against arteriosclerosis and a host of other health problems, from allergies to Alzheimer’s disease, to diabetes osteoporosis, Parkinson’s disease, rheumatoid arthritis and even baldness. But all these applications have been the subject of heated controversy for several years, particularly with regard to the use of the EDTA chelating agent for treating arteriosclerosis. It is especially this agent that will be discussed in this file.
Produced in Germany in the 1930s, EDTA (ethylene-diamine tetraacetic acid) was used a decade later by American workers with lead intoxication. . In the 1950s, Dr. Norman Clarke, research director at Providence Hospital in Detroit, Michigan, noted that EDTA treatment often resulted in significant improvements in health status: angina (related to blockage of the arteries), improvement of the memory and sharpness of the senses (sight, hearing, smell), increase of energy, etc.
It was then hypothesized that EDTA could attack the calcium deposits, and thus unblock the arteries. But this theory has been refuted by subsequent experiments. Since then, hypotheses have followed one another, including a particularly popular one, that EDTA fights free radicals , these molecules involved in the aging of the body.
To date, the scientific community has not yet reached a consensus, nor on the potential beneficial actions of lead chelation, apart from detoxification, nor on the mechanisms that would be involved.
Environmental medicine researchers have established some correlations between low exposures to heavy metals (and other toxicants) and various health and chronic conditions. For example, researchers have hypothesized that low-level lead exposure could lead to blood pressure problems. Others have hypothesized links between the presence in the body of certain metals and autism or Alzheimer’s disease or Parkinson’s disease . But the data is not really convincing and is often contradictory. The debate is far from over.
Be that as it may, chelation continues to gain popularity. Some people use it as a preventive measure to ensure that their bodies are rid of any traces of potentially toxic or harmful metals. And more and more, specialized doctors offer this therapy, in a private clinic, to an aging and wealthy clientele, often struck by arteriosclerosis. Chelation, since it attacks various degenerative diseases, is often presented as a rejuvenation therapy.