What about the aluminum in Redmond Clay?

By August 20, 2012 June 29th, 2018 clay basics, learning about clay

Aluminum is one of the most abundant minerals on earth, accounting for roughly 8% of our planet’s crust. Every plant and animal alive contains a trace amount of aluminum, which has been associated with healthy cellular function and metabolic processes. Of course, recent studies linking aluminum to mental degeneration has left a lot of people wondering whether the FDA will change the “generally recognized as safe” label that has been applied to aluminum-based food additives. In the mean time, many people have concerns about aluminum in products they use, from antiperspirant and makeup to pickles.

Two sides to aluminum

Like other metal elements, a tiny amount of aluminum is required to keep our body’s systems working properly—nickel for our heart, iron for blood, copper for nerves, and so on. The crucial distinction is the source and form of the elements: you could ingest aluminum in natural spring water, or you could force down a bit of aluminum foil. Your body can tell the difference, and won’t treat the sources of aluminum equally. It’s a silly example, maybe, but the basic idea is that our bodies recognize a chemical difference between heavy-metal aluminum, which could be absorbed by our system and potentially lead to health issues, and the naturally-occurring aluminum found in montmorillonite/bentonite clay.

Aluminum in bentonite clay

Unlike aluminum additives found in some products, experts agree that the natural aluminum in bentonite clay cannot be absorbed by our bodies. Once bound to silica, aluminum carries such a high negative charge it is actually central to the beneficial functions of clay—without it, the bentonite molecule that seems almost magical wouldn’t be able to do its job. (If we’re losing you, head over and learn how Redmond Clay works.)

Why aluminum is safe in clay

We wandered into some confusing territory there for a minute, so let’s regroup for those of you who like skipping to the end. Aluminum occurs naturally in our bodies, and in Redmond Clay. As with everything else we put in our bodies, the source and form of aluminum makes a big difference in how our bodies use it. The molecular structure of bentonite, especially the high negative charge of the aluminum silica particle, makes it impossible for the aluminum to leach into our systems. Instead, the aluminum leaves our bodies the old-fashioned way—along with the positively-charged toxins and impurities that the clay has bonded to. At a chemical level, much of clay’s healing benefit depends on aluminum.

In the mood for some light reading? Here are some resources about clay and aluminum:

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