Exposure to mercury before birth may lead to increased blood pressure in childhood, reports an international team of researchers. The islanders consume a diet rich in marine products, such as pilot whale meat, which expose them to mercury, according to the investigators. Blood pressures increased by about 14 points as blood mercury concentrations at birth increased from 1 to 10 micrograms per liter.
The report indicates that 10 micrograms per liter corresponds to the upper limit of mercury exposure recommended by the German Commission on Human Biomonitoring, indicating that blood pressure can be increased by exposure to mercury levels below recommended limits.
Children with lower birth weights experienced blood pressure increases about 50% higher than normal birth weight children having similar mercury levels. The investigators cite evidence that mercury toxicity can cause high blood pressure that persists long after the mercury exposure has been removed, resulting in a significant risk for diseases such as heart attack and stroke.
Epidemiology July 1999;10:370-375
Dr. Mercola's Comment:
Here is yet another reason to make sure you are very careful with silver fillings, which are actually 50% mercury. Please, never have them put in you or your family. If you already have them put in, DO NOT have them removed by a dentist who does not have proper training to remove them. A general guideline to follow is that if your dentist still puts in silver fillings, it would be better to find someone else to remove them as he/she does not believe that they are dangerous.
It would also be wise to avoid having any work done on your fillings if you are pregnant as that would be to great a risk to your baby. If you are in the Chicago area, I recommend three dentists who have exceptional training and have fair prices for their services. On the south side in Downer Grove is Dr. Janet Stopka and Dr. Basciano 630-629-6299. The north side has Dr. Joel Sanders in Highland Park at 847-432-6501. If you are in the Madison, Wisconsin, area Dr. John Schacheral is the dentist to see. Dr. Doug Cook in northern Wisconsin is also one of the top dentists around and he has done most of my work. His number is 920-842-2083.
I am certain many of you are not near these dentists. But if you need a good dentist in your area, you can contact one of the above offices and they might be able to direct you to someone good in your area.