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From: Silica Diatomaceous Earth vs Horsetail Grass


Sufficient stomach acid is required for silica’s absorption. Stomach acid helps to convert silica (= silicon dioxide) in to its absorbable and functional form orthosilicic acid.

The absorption of silica is very poor, but the absorption of orthosilicic acid is very good.

See Stomach acidity for problems with stomach acidity.


Silica helps the body to detox from aluminium, see below.

Silica provides numerous benefits for the body. See forums for an extensive list.

Pest control! Also, read the reviews here: Diatomaceous Earth Food Grade 10

How to use

To use internally, put some silica in water, add citric acid (or vitamin C or ACV or some other acid). Shake well and let it settle overnight. The clear solution above the sediment is rich in orthosilicic acid. You can add this to water to drink.

To use on the skin: A simple thing you can do is to take a diluted acid solution such as citric acid and add the silica to it. Shake them up so the silica has a good chance to react with the acid then let it settle out over night. Pour the solution in to a sprayer and spritz the skin after getting out of the shower and drying off. The skin is supposed to be slightly acidic. Soap and hard water make the skin too alkaline, which damages the skin. So spritzing the skin with the solution will help to restore the natural acidic pH of the skin. The citric acid will also increase the conversion of the silica in to orthosilicic acid, which is the form of silica the body uses.

The easiest way of adding silica is adding food grade DE (Diatomaceous earth).

Detox from aluminium or aluminum

See: Aluminium
Even PubMed acknowledges silicic acid as an antidote for aluminum poisoning and silica as a detox agent for heavy metals. Both brain tissue calcification and aluminum toxicity are linked to Alzheimer’s disease.
Aluminum (Al) is passed out through the urine when one supplements silica. It seems there’s little danger of taking too much, as long as adequate water is consumed and vitamin B1 and potassium levels are maintained. See “Side effects of some silica supplements” below for the B1 and potassium scare.
Dr. Chris Exley is an expert on aluminium toxicity. He recommends silica for detox.

Side effects of some silica supplements

Some research has shown that long-term use of silica supplements can cause the loss of some of the other essential vitamins that our body needs. That is because these supplements contain thiaminase, an enzyme that destroys vitamin B1 (thiamine) in the body. This means that long-term use of these supplements may cause thiamine deficiency.
Horsetail grass contains the enzyme thiaminase and the toxic alkaloid equisitine, both of which deplete thiamin ( = B1) from the body.
Even though the amount of nicotine in horsetail is small, it does not take much nicotine to cause harm.
Thiaminase, like most enzymes, is destroyed by heat, alcohol, and other forms of processing. Mussels, scallops, carp, and many other wild aquatic foods contain Thiaminase, but pose no threat if cooked properly. Horsetail should never be eaten, only extracted. Whether it’s tinctured in alcohol, or infused by boiling into water, herbal extracts of Horsetail should have no Thiaminase present due to the enzyme destroying properties of the heat, or alcohol, that processes them into medicinal formulas.

Healthy silica sources

If a herbal source of silica is desired the best choice is bamboo stalk, which unlike horsetail grass dilates blood vessels.
Other safe sources of silica include nettle leaf, oat straw and seaweeds.
A better choice though is food grade DE (= Diatomaceous Earth). DE is higher in silica than herbs and does not contain any toxic enzymes or alkaloids as in the case of horsetail grass.
Diatomaceous earth is 80 – 90% silica.

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