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Aluminium

aluminiumAluminium is one of the most widely used metals. Its element symbol is Al and atomic number 13.

Regarded to be harmless at one time, Aluminium or aluminum is now related to serious bone and brain disorders.

Sources

Food additives such as sodium aluminium phosphate used as an emulsifier in processed cheese, cake mixes, frozen dough, pancake mixes and self-raising flour contain aluminium. The mineral is also found in table salt and white flour. Acidic foods, such as spaghetti sauce, cooked in aluminium pans dissolve the mineral into the food and increase the aluminium content of the diet. It leeches on to the coffee from aluminium coffee pots. The newer the pot or the longer the brewing time, the higher the aluminium content of the beverage. Hemorrhoidal preparations, lipsticks and vaginal douches also contain aluminium. Aluminium containing antacids, antiperspirants and other products add to the daily intake of the mineral.

Overdose

  • Acute overdose: A high intake of aluminium affects the absorption and use of calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, selenium and fluoride. It might also lead to the development of bone deterioration.
  • Chronic overdose: Excessive amounts of aluminium deposits can contribute to serious brain diseases and disorders, such as Alzheimer’s disease.

What to do: For an acute overdose, call your doctor, emergency medical services (EMS), or the nearest poison control center immediately. For symptoms of chronic overdose, contact your doctor.

Possible side effects

Talk to your doctor about any side effect that seems unusual or which is especially bothersome.

Caution

  • Do not use aluminum cookware or utensils. Food cooked or stored in aluminium containers produce a substance that neutralizes digestive juices, leading to acidosis and ulcers.
  • Aluminum should be avoided as much as possible in view of the damage it can cause to the brain and nervous system.
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