It is the bentonite clay only which helped the Egyptians to preserve their famous mummies. Studies and researches report that numerous so-called 'primitive' tribes have used clay for both internal and external purification. The clay was used by ancient Greeks and Romans to restore health. Mahatma Gandhi recommended the clay for health and detoxification. The clay is a natural resource. Bentonite clay side effects are negligible.
Bentonite clay is included in the FDA's famous GRAS list ('Generally Recognized as Safe'). Bentonite clay is nothing but the weathered volcanic ash which is rich in important minerals. Bentonite when mixed with water, creates and maintains a very strong electromagnetic field, which enables it to attract and hold unwanted and toxic substances, that need to be thrown out of the body. Its incredible negative pulling power comes from its particles which have their wide surfaces negative-polarized and the edges positive-polarized. Thus, negative electrical attraction for positively-charged particles is the characteristic property of this clay.
Bentonite clay, when put in a liquid colloidal-gel state, works great for diarrhea, viral infections, food allergies, spastic colitis, food poisoning, abdominal cramps, depression, nausea, anorexia, etc. When taken internally, it promotes detoxification of the intestinal canal by removing all the toxins and waste from your body. It is used to treat constipation, bloating and gas. It also promotes beneficial bacterial balance in the digestive system, and helps boost immune system by way of liver detoxification and colon cleanse. Several other industrial benefits of the clay add to its value.
Absorptive abilities (ability to accumulate on a surface) of the clay lie in the fact that its molecules are negatively charged. When the clay passes through the digestive tract, it attracts the toxins which are positively charged. When they come close, they are bound together. They exchange ions and thus the toxic molecule is absorbed by the clay molecule.
Bentonite clay contains only 17 minerals. This low number is responsible for a higher potential to absorb other molecules. Thus the absorptive abilities come from the low number of minerals present in it. When the toxin molecules get incorporated in the clay molecules, your body can expel the toxin-filled clay in normal bowel movements. Betntonite clay mask help you get a clean and glowing skin as it helps in the purification of cells under skin. It is commonly used in homemade facials.
Slight trace of aluminum is found in bentonite clay, but no side effects of aluminum in bentonite have been yet noticed. So, it's hardly worth fretting about. Although, researches show that bentonite clay does not cause any side effects; more studies may find out some. Being clay, it might get stuck in the intestines, causing digestion problems. It is hence advisable to take the clay with psyllium husk. To avoid the side effects, you need to take some precautionary measures.
If your body is intolerant to even a very small quantity of aluminum, you should take oxy-powder instead of bentonite clay and psyllium husk. It is good to take bentonite clay with psyllium husk if you want to enjoy maximum benefits of the clay. As mentioned above, psyllium helps prevent the clay from getting stuck in your intestines and it promotes cleansing and detoxification. The clay should not be taken within two hours after taking medicines or supplements. There should be at least one hour gap between bentonite shake and anything nutritional because bentonite (especially when taken with psyllium husk), will absorb the nutrients also (like friendly bacteria, vitamins) along with toxins and bad bacteria. In general, the clay absorbs some nutrients so it is recommended to take some nutritional supplements regularly, when taking bentonite. It is suggested that aged people and pregnant women shouldn't take this clay or products containing the clay. Bentonite clay in itself does not cause constipation. However, it may stick to the intestinal tract and lead to a constipation-like feeling in case one's diet lacks fiber or if one's daily water intake is insufficient. In this case, it is advisable to combine psyllium husks with the clay and increase one's intake of water.
Pure organic bentonite clay usually doses not cause any side effects. However, more research is needed for finding out the side effects of the clay. Till then, it's wise to consult a health care professional before using it.