For thousands of years, people have been using bentonite clay as a way to detox and heal their body. That’s because bentonite is considered a “healing clay” with powerful benefits. Along with rubbing the clay on your skin, you can also ingest it. I know what you’re thinking … “Why the heck would I want to eat clay?!” Before you rule it out completely, though, you’ll definitely want to check out the 11 main ways you can benefit from a bentonite clay detox.
What Is Bentonite Clay
If you’ve never heard of bentonite clay before, let me start by saying it’s made of aged volcanic ash. The largest known source of bentonite clay is found in Fort Benton, Wyoming. Hence the name “bentonite” clay. This healing clay is also commonly found in France and Italy.
Bentonite clay (AKA montmorillonite clay) is loaded with minerals including calcium, copper, magnesium, silica, sodium, iron, and potassium. It also has nearly 70 trace elements. With so many beneficial nutrients, you can really think of bentonite clay as a natural multivitamin! Along with being nutrient-dense, it’s touted for its amazing detoxing abilities.
1) Pulls Out Harmful Toxins From The Body
I’m going to get a little scientific here for a second. Bentonite clay has a strong negative ionic charge. This negative charge allows it to attract substances that have a positive charge. That includes harmful toxins, bad bacteria, pesticides, pathogens, and heavy metals. Once bentonite clay touches liquid, it immediately leeches onto nearby toxic molecules. When taken internally, together the clay and toxic molecules move through the intestines and are eventually eliminated from the body. When used externally, the toxins are automatically drawn out of your pores and into the clay. Think of bentonite clay as a magnet for harmful substances. While the bentonite clay pulls in toxins, it also releases its beneficial minerals (the ones I mentioned above).
One frequently asked question in regards to bentonite clay’s detoxing ability is, “Will it grab ahold of any beneficial nutrients and flush those out of the body too?” Well, you can breathe a sigh of relief because the answer is no! Since bentonite clay is only attracted to molecules with a positive charge, it doesn’t leech onto any beneficial nutrients the body needs to function properly.
2) Boosts Immunity
Bentonite clay has powerful antibiotic properties that help ward off various viruses, infections, and diseases. A study conducted by Arizona State University found that bentonite clay kills harmful bacteria such as e. Coli, Salmonella, and MRSA (just to name a few).
Along with fighting off illness, bentonite clay strengthens the lining of your intestines. This is important for two reasons. First and foremost, nearly 80 percent of your immune system is located in your gut. So keeping your gut healthy is key for promoting a strong immune system. Also, your intestines are made up of pores. If your gut wall is compromised those pores will widen, allowing toxins to enter into your bloodstream. By strengthening your intestines, you’re helping those pores remain contracted (as they should be).
How To Use: For bentonite clay to help strengthen your immune system, you should take it internally. Scroll down to the bottom of this article to find out how much clay is safe to consume and which type of bentonite clay you can eat.
3) Boosts Probiotics
By removing harmful toxins and bad bacteria in your intestines, you are allowing your gut’s good bacteria (AKA probiotics) to flourish. By improving your gut’s good bacteria, you’re essentially improving your overall health. Did you know your gut is linked to nearly every function of the body including your digestive health, mental health, weight, and skin condition?
How To Use: For bentonite clay to help boost probiotics and improve your gut health, you will need to ingest it. Scroll down to the bottom of this article to find out how you can use bentonite clay internally.
4) Relieves Digestive Issues
Bentonite clay is often used to relieve nausea, acid reflux, and diarrhea. It’s also a safe and effective way to heal Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) and heal Leaky Gut Syndrome. According to researchers, bentonite clay can help relieve digestive issues in both adults and children.
In one study, researchers fed bentonite clay to young mammals. They found the clay helped to flush out harmful rotavirus and caronavirus toxins within their guts. Rotaviruses are one of the leading causes of gastrointestinal issues, such as diarrhea and nausea, in infants and toddlers.
Speaking of helping heal your kiddos, bentonite clay can also relieve digestive issues in your fur babies. Bentonite is safe for pets to ingest. Simply mix a ¼ cup or less of food-grade clay into their water until it dissolves. Their bowel issues should improve in no time.
How To Use: For bentonite clay to help relieve your digestive issues, you need to consume it.
5) Balances The Body’s pH Levels
Today, the standard American diet is filled with unhealthy acid-forming foods. While steaks, potato chips, and processed cupcakes may not all be acidic in nature, they make the stomach pump out extra acid in order to help break the food down and digest it. For this reason, junk food is considered “acid-forming.”
An overly acidic body can lead to health issues such as inflammation, weight gain, frequent colds, fatigue and skin problems. To counteract the acidity, we need to eat alkaline-forming foods. Along with plant-based vegetables, bentonite clay is considered alkaline-forming.
6) Boosts Energy
Do you wake up tired? Are you sluggish by noon? The overwhelming feeling of fatigue can be a tough one to overcome. One way you can naturally boost your energy level is to add bentonite clay to diet. By consuming this healthy volcanic ash, it will pull excess hydrogen out of your body’s cells. This process allows more oxygen to enter into your cells. When your cells get more oxygen, you feel more energized!
7) Food Poisoning
Have you ever eaten a delicious meal and then suddenly been struck with a bad feeling? Within a few hours, it’s off to the bathroom with sharp stomach pain, diarrhea, and vomiting. Surprise … you have food poisoning.
Embarrassing food poisoning symptoms can last a few hours or even several days. To help speed up your recovery, the next time you eat a “bad meal,” turn to bentonite clay. Consuming bentonite clay will prevent the poison from absorbing into the stomach and body. Before you know it, that queasy feeling will disappear and you’ll be back to your normal self. Ingesting bentonite clay is a fast and effective home remedy.
8) Improves Skin
You can also use the hypoallergenic clay externally to heal skin issues such as acne, eczema, psoriasis, and dermatitis. It also helps heal rashes and wounds. By combining the clay with a little water it will create a thick paste. Rubbing that paste onto your skin will pull any harmful toxins right our of your pores. These toxins are what cause outbreaks and redness.
Since bentonite clay has antibacterial properties, it can also heal poison ivy and relieve chicken pox symptoms.
How To Use: There are two different ways you can use bentonite clay to improve your skin.
- Mix sodium bentonite clay with a little water and apply to skin, creating a mask. You can create an all-natural face mask or rub the clay somewhere on your body (wherever your issue is). Once the mask is dry, use warm water to remove. It will take the mask about 30 minutes to dry. For optimal results, it’s recommended to do a clay mask twice a week.
- Another way your skin can benefit from bentonite clay is by taking a detox bath. Simply add 1/4 cup of the clay to your warm bath water and soak in it for as long as you would like. A clay detox bath can help rejuvenate the skin, leaving it hydrated and soothed.
9) Fights Inflammation
One of the main reasons bentonite clay can heal skin issues, such as acne, is because it has strong anti-inflammatory properties. That means bentonite clay can actually alleviate pain and redness by counteracting the certain enzymes that trigger inflammation. Fighting inflammation isn’t only beneficial for helping you achieve flawless skin, though.
According to doctors, inflammation is at the root of almost all diseases. In fact, chronic inflammation has been linked to arthritis, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, cancer, heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol levels and even depression.
How To Use: There are anti-inflammatory benefits when using bentonite clay both externally and internally.
10) Improves Oral Health
The mouth is one of the most susceptible parts of the body when it comes to harmful invaders such as bad bacteria and toxins. Think about it – your hands touch some of the dirtiest surfaces. Chances are, you’re guilty of eating a few meals without washing your hands. Plus, are you a nail biter? You have no idea the bacteria that’s hiding under your fingernails! Since we can’t be perfectly clean all the time, bentonite clay can help! This healing clay can draw those toxins out of your mouth before you swallow them. Additionally, it will release beneficial minerals into the mouth, helping to strengthen your teeth and gums.
How To Use: If you’ve ever read the ingredient label of a natural toothpaste you may have noticed bentonite clay listed as an ingredient. While you can certainly buy one of these kinds of toothpaste, a trip to the store isn’t necessary. You can make your own “toothpaste” by simply adding a little water to the clay. Mix it together and then place the thickened mixture on your toothbrush bristles.
You can also mix bentonite clay into a glass of water and use it as a daily rinse. Just gargle the clay in your mouth with some water for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Similar to using mouthwash, spit out the clay and rinse with fresh water.
11) Purifies Water
Tap water is filled with fluoride and other chemicals that kill your good gut bacteria and can wreak havoc on your health. If you don’t want to spend money on a water purifier, a cost-effective solution is to add a teaspoon of bentonite clay to your glass.
How To Use Bentonite Clay
When selecting which clay to buy for internal use, look for a food-grade calcium bentonite clay (This should not be confused for sodium bentonite clay, which should only be used externally). Your clay should be gray/tan/green in color, soft to the touch, and odorless. If the clay is white and coarse then don’t use it. Chances are if you see a white powdered clay then it’s not truly bentonite clay.
Once you have the right type of clay, add 1 teaspoon to 8 ounces of water or fresh (not processed) juice. Make sure the clay is completely dissolved into the liquid before you drink it. *Whatever you do, don’t let the clay touch anything metal. Use either a plastic or glass cup to drink from. Also, use a plastic spoon to stir. If the clay comes into contact with metal it will be stripped of it’s powerful detoxing abilities.
To reap the most benefits, drink your bentonite clay/water mixture on an empty stomach. Also, don’t consume bentonite clay within two hours of taking any other vitamins/supplements.
When selecting which clay to buy for external use, look for sodium bentonite clay. This type of clay is higher in sodium and is not suitable for consumption. However, it’s great for clay masks and detox baths.
Just like calcium bentonite clay, sodium bentonite clay should be gray/tan/green in color, soft to the touch, and odorless. Again, if the clay is white and coarse then chances are it’s not true bentonite clay.
The most common side effect of consuming bentonite clay is constipation. That’s because the clay pulls water from your colon as it passes through the intestines. For this reason, whenever you ingest bentonite clay, make sure to stay hydrated.
When you first introduce bentonite clay into your diet, you may experience some detox symptoms such as headaches. Listen to your body. If your body is experiencing detox symptoms, try cutting your “dose” in half.
Of course, while bentonite clay is considered a hypoallergenic substance, it’s always best to consult with your doctor before using it internally.