Definition of the pattern:
Name Of The Pattern
No Hair Washing
Sympathetic Dominance On A Retest
Combination With Other Patterns
Quantifying Sympathetic Dominance
What To Do If You Are Not Sure If A Person Has A Sympathetic Dominance Pattern
Sympathetic dominance is one of the most important and most interesting patterns seen on hair mineral analyses.??It has to do with the autonomic nervous system.
Dr. Paul Eck, my mentor and teacher of nutritional balancing, did not recognize this pattern.??I recognized it around 1998 after he died.
Name of the pattern.?I used to call this pattern the?pusher pattern, because I noticed people with this pattern tended to push?themselves.??This is the same name used for this pattern in advanced acupuncture.
The pattern is now called?sympathetic dominance?because a person with this pattern is overusing the sympathetic nervous system.
Name confusion.??This is not the same as a?sympathetic state of body chemistry.??This is fast oxidation.
Also, some other hair analysis labs and doctors use the term sympathetic dominance differently.??So please strictly follow the definition below to define this pattern.
DEFINITION OF SYMPATHETIC DOMINANCE ON A HAIR ANALYSIS
This pattern is always characterized by either:
Both the above can also be present.
Let us discuss these possible patterns in more detail:
The lower the potassium level, the more severe the pattern.
The slower the oxidation rate, the more severe the pattern.
The higher the sodium/potassium ratio in this case, the more severe the pattern.
If the calcium/magnesium ratio is also greater than 9.5, the pattern is a double pattern and is more severe.
Do not wash the hair!?The hair must not be washed at the laboratory for accurate assessment of sympathetic dominance.??See below for more about hair washing at the laboratory.
Sympathetic dominance indicates a person who is over-utilizing his or her sympathetic nervous system.??In simple terms, the person is pushing?himself?or herself, or worrying too much.
The sodium and potassium readings on a hair tissue mineral analysis, and to some degree their ratio, have to do with the utilization of this branch of the autonomic or automatic nervous system.
Relation to the stress wave and progression from fast to slow oxidation.
The stress wave is the way the body responds to a stressor.??Sympathetic dominance can occur when there is not enough recovery?phase.
The progression from fast oxidation to slow oxidation.???While some use of this fight-or-flight system is normal and needed, when it is overused chronically, it becomes exhausted.??The body flips into a parasympathetic state we call slow oxidation.??However, if one keeps on using the sympathetic system after exhaustion occurs, the sodium and potassium levels in the hair keep declining, revealing the pattern we are discussing.
Physiology.??In fact, the?person is eliminating in the urine and sweat?some sodium and potassium beyond what is ideal.??This directly gives rise to the low levels.??The pattern also has to do with the level of?aldosterone?in some instances, and it has to do with more complex mechanisms that come into play when the adrenal glands are very stressed, and depleted nutritionally.
They often feel compelled, and at times, somewhat obsessive or compulsive, though usually not in a pathological way.??In fact, this can be a very positive trait when it is controlled.??Many are very caring and thoughtful, for example, but it is taken to an extreme and eventually begins to damage the body.
Some believe they are still fast oxidizers, when, in fact, the body has ?burned out? of fast oxidation and is now in slow oxidation.
Many feel they are being ?chased by tigers? much of the time. They may have been taught that to relax is a ?waste of time? or ?unproductive? or ?lazy?.
They are doers.??Often they identify themselves with their ?doingness?, meaning their activities, physical or mental, rather than identifying with their?beingness.??The latter would be more like a very young child who is just happy to be?himself?or herself and need not run around or do much of anything to be happy.
????????????Causes for this pattern can come from the spiritual, mental or physical realm.
This is where meditation of the proper kind can be essential and powerful.??It is a productive way to use the will and other mental faculties without burning oneself out.
The same will that gets one into trouble with this mineral pattern can thus be used in a powerful, healing, creative manner.? Beware of using just any meditation, as many do not have nearly the same effect as the one we recommend.
Another spiritual aspect of this pattern is that many with sympathetic dominance are somewhat lonely because of the their level of mental development.??They react to this by trying to ?fit in with the crowd?.??To do so, they tend to overwork, overachieve, and generally run themselves ragged.??Many try to please others, which is always a mistake.??As a result, they exhaust themselves.
Another spiritual aspect is that these individuals are generally quite ungrounded and?uncentered.??They have a strong need for grounding and centering.??There are not too many ways to achieve this, and one is the Roy Masters meditation exercise mentioned above and in the article on meditation on this website.??Walking slowly is another excellent way to become centered and grounded, and is highly recommended for this reason.??Also, learning to maintain strict boundaries and learning basic truths about the world and about people is also most helpful.
Another emotional cause may be excessive emotions that are fearful, negative, angry or harmful in some way.??For example, fear of poverty, fear of the unknown, fear of self, even, can drive many people to achieve highly or just to keep moving all the time.
Fear.?The sympathetic nervous system is the fight-or-flight system.??It is the body?s response to fear.??Anything that creates fear, whether it?be?listening to the news, watching a horror movie or war movie, being in the company of harmful friends or family, or a thousand other situations can contribute to sympathetic dominance symptoms.
Anger.?Many people with sympathetic dominance are quite angry underneath.??This is partially because they are spiritually advanced people who are having trouble handling the world.??It can also be for all sorts of other reasons, such as childhood traumas.??Dealing with anger, which is always an adrenal response to fear that is projected onto others, is important for many people with sympathetic dominance pattern.
Other toxic metals, especially mercury and cadmium, or even toxic chemicals in the body may also irritate and drive a person even when he or she wants to relax.
The?three amigos are always present in excess as well.??They help support the sodium level, according to our research.??Note that they will often not be revealed on early hair mineral analyses.??These are aluminum, along with a?biounavailable?form of manganese and iron that are most likely oxides.??These also irritate and stimulate the adrenals or the nervous system, perpetuating the pattern.
Also, fatigue also depletes vital nutrients such as zinc, chromium, selenium and others.??These vital minerals and some vitamins as well are then often replaced by toxic metals such as cadmium, copper and others.
If one follows a nutritional balancing program, however, the toxic metals and toxic chemicals will slowly be eliminated from the body.??As that happens, a person often calms down, worries less, relaxes more and the sympathetic dominance pattern disappears.
Many other toxic and physiological minerals can also contribute to the pattern.
It might also take the form of tight fascia that is addressed by Rolfing or Structural Integration, tight ligaments, bad posture or other structural or physical imbalances.
This is a strictly physical situation for the most part.??This also means that anyone with sympathetic dominance should consider physical therapies such as chiropractic and structural integration as part of an overall healing program.
An interesting structural aspect is that a so-called cringing posture will tend to cause this pattern by irritating the sympathetic nerves in the upper and lower spinal area.??As the posture changes, the nerves can relax.
Chiropractic misalignments can also contribute to the pattern in a fairly pure physical sense.
????????????The nutritional balancing programs we recommend are geared to correct sympathetic dominance in at least ten different ways, which I will elaborate here:
HAIR MUST NOT BE WASHED AT THE LAB TO IDENTIFY SYMPATHETIC DOMINANCE
It is critical that the hair not be washed at the laboratory for accurate readings of sodium and potassium, in particular.??These are?water soluble?minerals, and are easily removed by washing.
Only two laboratories I am aware of do not wash the hair at the laboratory.??These are Analytical Research Laboratories in Phoenix, Arizona, the one I most recommend, and Trace Elements, Inc. in Addison, Texas. I do not recommend using Trace Elements, Inc. for hair testing.??They are not as careful, they do not list the ideal hair values, their graphs are more difficult to read, and their nutrition programs are not as good.
I do not recommend using a hair tissue mineral testing laboratory that washes the hair in any manner.??In my experience, the problems associated with hair samples that are contaminated with dust or other items is much less than the problem of skewed readings due to the chemicals used to wash the hair.
SYMPATHETIC DOMINANCE ON RETEST HAIR MINERAL ANALYSES
?On retest hair mineral analyses when a person is following a nutritional balancing program, the pattern is much less important because it is usually just a retracing effect that is very temporary and will pass usually in a few days to a few weeks or so.
One may still experience the symptoms of sympathetic dominance while one is retracing the pattern, but the symptoms are usually transient and fairly mild most of the time.
VARIANTS OF SYMPATHETIC DOMINANCE
????????????Burned Out Sympathetic Dominance.??This pattern is present when the sympathetic dominance pattern of a low potassium level combines with a sodium/potassium ratio less than 2.5.
????????????This may indicate that a person has been in sympathetic dominance for a long time, or it has been quite extreme, so that now the adrenal glands are quite exhausted, causing a low sodium/potassium ratio.??It is not a healthful pattern at all, and is associated with exhaustion, fatigue, depression, and most chronic illnesses.
????????????Hunted.??This is just a way to express or understand an extreme sympathetic dominance pattern.??Criteria for a ?hunted? pattern include a potassium level of 1 mg% or less, a Ca/K ratio greater than 200, and?an?Na/K ratio of 4 or more.
????????????Three highs.??It is possible to have a three high?macromineral?pattern along with sympathetic dominant.
Four Highs.??This is also possible along with sympathetic dominance.
COMBINATION PATTERNS THAT INCLUDE SYMPATHETIC DOMINANCE
????????????Sympathetic dominance is part of a number of other important?macromineral?patterns on a hair mineral analysis in which the hair is not washed at the laboratory.??These include:
All of the above patterns always include a sympathetic dominance pattern.
QUANTIFYING SYMPATHETIC DOMINANCE
One can assess the severity of sympathetic dominance by assessing how many sympathetic dominance patterns are present on a hair chart.??Double and triple sympathetic dominance patterns are common, and it is possible to have ten or even 15 sympathetic dominance indicators.
The way to quantify the pattern is to add up the number of sympathetic dominant indicators that are present on the chart.??Here are the criteria, so far:
In this way, one can have, for example, five, ten or even fifteen sympathetic dominance patterns on a single hair mineral chart!
WHAT TO DO IF ONE IS NOT SURE IF A PERSON HAS A SYMPATHETIC DOMINANT PATTERN
????????????At times, a hair mineral analysis may reveal?borderline?sympathetic dominance such as a hair potassium level of 5 mg% and a sodium/potassium ratio of about 4.??In these cases, here are some ways to decide if sympathetic dominance is present:
????????????Begin with a?sympathetic dominant program because it is milder and therefore safer. ?Giving a more powerful standard program when sympathetic dominance is present?overstimulates?the autonomic nervous system and the person feels better for a short time – a week or two – and then usually feels worse.