Trying too hard to stay afloat

An interesting pattern on a hair mineral analysis that has not been washed at the laboratory is called Trying To Stay Afloat.  The pattern is indicated by a combination of:

·           A sodium/potassium ratio greater than about 5

·           A calcium/magnesium ratio greater than about 9.5

·           A potassium level of 4 mg% or less.

·           Optional three lows.  This is an optional, additional indicator that one might call a double Trying To Stay Afloat.  Three lows means that three or the four macrominerals (calcium, magnesium, sodium and potassium) are lower than their ideal values.  The ideals are calcium – 40 mg%, magnesium – 6 mg%, sodium – 25 mg% and potassium – 10 mg%.

The higher the Na/K and/or Ca/Mg ratios, the more extreme the pattern.  Also, the lower the potassium, the more extreme the pattern may be.


Trying to stay afloat is an uncommon pattern.  It is found most often in adults of both sexes.  It combines:

·           Sympathetic dominance (low potassium), which indicates a personality tendency in most cases to push oneself or be willful.

·           A double high ratio pattern (high Na/K and high Ca/Mg), which indicates extreme acute stress, anger in some cases and often some inflammation.

·           If three lows pattern is also present, it indicates a more advanced and severe version of the pattern.


            This pattern often indicates a person who is trying very hard to maintain himself or herself in the face of a lot of stress.  In other words, the person is fighting hard to stay out of a four lows pattern, which often indicates more of a giving up posture or situation.

The stress with this pattern may be biochemical, and often is to some extent.  However, often lifestyle stress or imbalances are also playing a major role.

The movement of this pattern is a person who is not making much progress forward, but is trying hard and at least for the time being, maintaining control of a situation.

People with this pattern may be more grounded than those who are simply in sympathetic dominance.


The pattern may combine with a calcium shell, in which case the person has given up in a certain way, but is still fighting hard.  It can also combine with a step down pattern.  In this case, the person is struggling more successfully, in most cases, even if a calcium shell is present as well.