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Diatomaceous earth - anyone have bad side effects?

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  • I have read all the posts on this thread, and have a question for those that actually did the legwork of researching and also have a scientific idea of what and how DE works (perhaps Kellie).

    I foster dogs through a rescue organization and they always come with worms, fleas, and who knows what other parasites. Beyond the external use on their furs and bedding to kill fleas, I am quite inclined to add it to the rescues' food and also my pet dogs to prevent their own infection. I am also considering perhaps taking it myself for short periods (2-4 weeks?) a couple of times per year as a means to potentially clear away potential parasites.

    At any rate, I also wanted to see what other research may have been done on the subject, and ran across this article: PLOS ONE: The Phagocytosis and Toxicity of Amorphous Silica which raised my concern. In the results section: "It is well known that exposure of mouse alveolar macrophage (MH-S) cells to crystalline silica induces cell death [9], [13]. In order to assess the toxicity of amorphous silica, cells were exposed to spherical, amorphous particles. Both crystalline and amorphous silica induced high amounts of cell death in MH-S cells (Fig. 1A). Four hours after addition of high amounts of silica (50 g/cm2), 51% of cells exposed to crystalline silica and 48% of cells exposed to amorphous silica had propidium iodide (PI) stained nuclei. Twenty-four hours after silica treatment, 100% of cells were killed by both silica types (Fig. 1A)."

    After reading this thread of course I understand the difference between crystalline and amorphous silica, but the article does perhaps illuminate that the amorphous kind (as found in DE) may(?) also be harmful. But therein lie my questions to those more educated on the matter:
    1) How does a mouse alveolar macrophage cell compare to human cell?
    2) Was the research conducted employing such a method (perhaps concentration) that would not be encountered by simply ingesting say a tablespoon in water? Or perhaps through inhalation from handling the powder on a daily basis in feeding the foster dogs?
    3) It does say the researchers employed a "spherical" amorphous silica - is this a poor analogue for DE, and if so, how? (I understand that DE has varied structures, but is there reason to believe that would be a benefit over the spherical structures used in the experiment?)

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    • I took some yesterday. 2 tsp in about 10 oz. water/juice mixture. I only drank 3/4 of the glass before I had a reaction right away. My throat felt like it was closing up and I had trouble breathing. Maybe I'm allergic? I was hoping to take this to help lower blood pressure and inflammation. I did drink alot of water througout the day and it seemed to help. The throat feeling went away but I'm afraid to take this again if it affects breathing. I was very careful putting the DE in the liquid and it did not get into the air , I even closed the windows so wind wouldnt blow it around. Im not sure i will try this again.

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      • I long since composted mine - the worms are still doing WELL!

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        • Hi
          I took DE a few years ago and wish I had not. Silica can pass through the intestine. It doesn't matter of you inhale it. It is inflamatory to the brain and tissue according to Dr. Peat. Listen to his lectures on YouTube he mentions silicon many times or try a search on his website. Silaca. Dioxide. Its all excepients in many supplments. I stopped all powdered supps a month ago and now remembered my useing DE. I'm glad I only had a few servings. Not sure what to do??? Reducing inflamation may be my best approach. The internet has made it seem things are safe because so many search results display positive statements about somthing. DE is not safe. There's no way I'd touch the stuff again. Run away. Eat a raw carrot if you want to clense your gut, really! If I can get any help healing from people here I'm grateful for the input.

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          • Originally posted by breadsauce View Post
            Hi. After reading lots of good things about DE, I ordered some food grade and started taking 2 teaspoons mixed with water in the morning and 2 in the evening, on an empty stomach. I was waiting to see all the marvellous benefits - but after a few days I started having blood with BM's. And an ache in my gut. So - I stopped taking it and after a few days all is back to normal.

            Now, this could be a coincidence. Or it could be as a result of taking ~DE at all.

            Does other people here use it? Have you had these side effects? When is the best time to take it - with food, after food, or as I did, on an empty stomach?

            I am slightly apprehensive of trying again, in case it was actually damaging my gut, - but would like to see my hair growing thicker again!!!


            This is definitely a side effect of the DE. It happens when you start out on too high of a dose at once or if you aren't drinking enough water to compensate. The recommended amount to start with is 1 teaspoon a day in water, followed by another full glass of just water. You should take this much for about a week until upping the dose to 2 teaspoons a day. Take care, and drinks lots of water!

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            • Hi,

              I've been on Food Grade DE for about 2 weeks. I feel good every time I take a dose. But now, I'm feeling dehydrated and constipated. It feels like I have cement in my gut. I've read similar complaints. Is this normal? I drink a lot of water, so why is this an issue? I feel that it's really helping and I would like to make it through one month to see how it helps my parasite, and possibly SIBO.

              I'm also having some insomnia now, but this is normal for me anyway, but not sure if being dehydrated and constipated can cause insomnia or not.

              I also feel that most of my back/neck pain (spinal) has gotten much better and I can tolerate sitting down longer without feeling so uncomfortable. No sure if DE helped that or not.

              Also, I did have off/on malaise/nausea like feelings before starting DE. I've had a lot less of that. Not sure if that's because it's killing off my parasites, SIBO, fungus, or what....

              I haven't had any bad detox reactions as I was already doing some things for detox. I'm also taking a strong Oregano product to help kill off parasites.

              If I can just get past this dehydration/constipation/cement like feeling.....

              I take about 1tsp twice per day on a empty stomach. Once before breakfast and once before dinner.

              Cheers.

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