(NaturalNews) Few people give much thought to lowly diatoms, single-celled marine micro-organisms that are found in abundance in large bodies of water. However, when these tiny organisms die, their skeletal remains settle to the bottom, become fossilized over time and accumulate to produce one of nature's most beneficial and healthful substances: diatomaceous earth.
Diatomaceous earth is often harvested from areas where large bodies of water once stood and is marketed in two grades - industrial and food grade. Industrial grade diatomaceous earth is used for many purposes including water filtration systems in swimming pools. Food grade diatomaceous earth is perhaps best known for its use as a non-toxic insecticide. However, food grade diatomaceous earth offers a host of health benefits too.
The sharp points found on fossilized diatom exoskeletons create a safe and non-toxic strong abrasive that scrubs intestinal walls and cuts up any parasites present in the digestive tract. Additionally, as it passes the digestive tract, it attracts and absorbs pathogens such as bacteria, viruses, protozoa, and fungi. It also absorbs and removes pesticides, heavy metals, and drug residues.
Diatomaceous earth also has many health benefits due to its mineral content, which consists of about 85% amorphous silica and approximately 20 trace minerals. The silica in diatomaceous earth is effective in preventing premature aging. Silica can also make age spots fade and also helps to repair and maintain lung tissue elasticity.
Regular intake of diatomaceous earth also has numerous other health benefits, some of which include:
*Lowering blood pressure and bad cholesterol. *Relieving sore joints. *Healthier skin and hair. *Healthier teeth and gums. *Harder nails.
Diatomaceous earth does not have an unpleasant taste. Simply mix 1 to 2 tablespoons daily in liquid or food. Since diatomaceous earth does not dissolve, it may be necessary to stir a few times while drinking to prevent settling. As some people experience high energy levels, it is best to take it in the morning hours.
Diatomaceous earth benefits pets and other animals similarly to the way it does humans, and it can have other benefits as well. For example, rubbing diatomaceous earth on their coats will ward off fleas and ticks and given internally, it is an excellent de-wormer.
When giving pets diatomaceous earth orally, just mix it in their food. Kittens should receive 1/4 of a teaspoon while large cats should be given 1 teaspoon.
The dosage for dogs is as follows:
*Very small dogs should receive 1/2 teaspoon. *Dogs under 50 pounds - 1 teaspoon. *Dogs 50 to 100 pounds - 1 tablespoon. *Dogs more than 100 pounds - 1 to 2 tablespoons.
Diatomaceous earth can also be added to kitty litter and pet carriers to reduce odors.
Gardeners can find that diatomaceous earth is a dream come true. The sharp points scratch the exoskeleton of insects causing them to dry out and die and the powder also absorbs fats (lipids) from the hard exoskeletons of the insects, drying them even further. It makes an excellent pesticide, effectively controlling aphids, thrips, mites, snails, and slugs without harming worms or beneficial soil microorganisms.
IMPORTANT NOTES: Industrial grade diatomaceous earth, which has larger quantities of a highly crystallized form of silica, should never be inhaled due to possible health risks for the lungs. When using food grade diatomaceous earth externally, such as in the garden or on pets, it is probably a good idea to wear a dust mask and gloves. Breathing in too much food grade diatomaceous earth may irritate the mucus membranes in the nose and mouth and it may dry out your skin. Once the dust settles, it does not pose a threat. Diatomaceous earth can also dry out your skin.
Luella May is a natural health advocate helping people to heal naturally. Luella is in the midst of editing her ebook, "The 8 Invisible Stains of Our Souls" which will be available in the next few months. She partners with Tony Isaacs, who authors of books and articles about natural health including "Cancer's Natural Enemy" and "Collected Remedies" Luella contributes to The Best Years in Life website for baby boomers and others wishing to avoid prescription drugs and mainstream managed illness and live longer, healthier and happier lives naturally. Luella co-moderates the CureZone "Ask Tony Isaacs" forum as well as the Yahoo Health Group "Oleander Soup" and hosts her own yahoo group focusing on the natural wellbeing of pets "