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You’ve probably heard of bentonite clay for facial masks, but did you know it can be used internally as well?
Bentonite clay gives you more than just a pretty face – it’s been used for centuries to help rid the body of toxins in a safe, effective manner.
Even though healing clays like bentonite have largely been forgotten in recent times, they are once again making a comeback as a wellness trend for both external and internal detoxification.
Maybe it’s time to hop on that bandwagon? Let’s find out!
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What is bentonite clay?
Mined from the earth and composed of volcanic ash, bentonite clay is one of the most effective healing clays on the market today.
Its name ‘bentonite’ was coined from ‘Fort Benton, Wyoming,’ which has the largest source of this valuable substance and where most of today’s supply is still harvested.
However, the first known source of bentonite clay was ‘Montmorillon’ – a region of France. This gave birth to the name “montmorillonite,” which is used interchangeably with bentonite.
Bentonite clay for internal use is usually odorless and comes in a grey or cream color with a fine, velveteen feel. Several reports show that it’s been consumed or ingested for centuries as a traditional healing method in regions like Australia, Central Africa and The Andes.
How Does Food-Grade Bentonite Clay Work?
By good ‘ole Law of Attraction.
Let me explain:
The natural form of bentonite clay is composed primarily of negative ions. When it comes in contact with water, this detoxifying clay produces an electric charge that attracts positively charged substances like lead, mercury, cadmium and chemicals.
Once the clay attracts toxins, it bonds to them and ushers them safely out of the body.
The 2 most commercially available bentonite clays are sodium and calcium varieties.
- Sodium bentonite
This form has a high negative charge and can swell up to 10X its size once activated by fluid. That makes it highly absorbent (aka it can pull even more toxins into it) and therefore best for detoxing purposes.
- Calcium bentonite
This variety has smaller particles compared to sodium bentonite. It assimilates quickly into the bloodstream, leaving calcium and silica behind. For this reason, calcium bentonite clay is better suited for demineralizing than drawing out of toxins.
You should note that even though sodium bentonite is best for detoxing, it shouldn’t be taken in excess. Since it exchanges the toxins in your body for its sodium, excessive use could lead to complications.
A couple times a month is typically all you need to reap the benefits of this detoxifying clay.
Benefits and Uses of Bentonite Clay
For me personally, its versatility paired with an affordable price makes bentonite clay a no-brainer addition to my detox arsenal.
It can be used both inside and out with equally impressive benefits for both.
External Uses of Bentonite Clay
Clears Bacteria, Toxins and Infections
Bentonite acts as an antibiotic remedy when combined with water and applied topically. If you struggle with blemish outbreaks (who doesn’t?!), eczema, psoriasis or even dermatitis, bentonite clay could be your new best friend.
It binds to toxins on the skin and within pores, alleviating redness and mild infections while speeding up the healing process.
It helps purify water
Bentonite clay serves as a cost-effective method for cleaning water. In fact, if you drink city water that’s heavy on fluoride, you can pair bentonite clay with magnesium to remove it.
Combats Diaper Rash
Bentonite clay can serve as a safe, effective alternative to baby powder. Just a small amount applied to the skin serves as a natural cleansing and soothing agent.
My oldest was susceptible to diaper rashes when he was a baby. I tried all kinds of store-bought stuff, but it wasn’t until my sweet momma suggested bentonite clay that he finally got relief.
For diaper rash, place a small amount of clay in your hand. Add just enough water to form a slightly damp paste. Apply to the affected area at every diaper change. I started this routine every time redness started to show, and it was always cleared within 2 days!
Tightens and Tones the Skin
Bentonite clay can be used as a blemish-reducing facial mask thanks to its ability to remove impurities deep within skin. A mixture of bentonite clay, apple cider vinegar and water provides a great DIY facial serum.
Eliminates Body Odor
Be honest, have you ever done a pit check?
We all have, I’m sure – And if you need a little extra help in that department, bentonite clay can help.
It’s actually an excellent deodorant for sensitive skin because it absorbs excess moisture (and stink) from your armpits without causing irritation.
Internal Uses of Bentonite Clay
Topical applications of bentonite clay are great, but it’s the internal uses that really got me excited when I first started researching it for detox years ago. Here are just a few of my favorite benefits:
Pulls out excess hydrogen and makes you feel energized
Bentonite clay provides more room for oxygen and reduces excess hydrogen. Translation? You enjoy improved muscle recovery, more energy and faster healing when a bug or virus strikes.
Helps increase your pH level
The less healthy your diet is, the more acidic your body becomes. Unfortunately, the standard American diet alters the body’s pH level, making it more acidic overall.
You can balance pH levels by adding more alkalizing foods to your diet like the alkalizing minerals found in bentonite clay. They work to promote full-body health by making your urine, blood and saliva more alkaline.
Promotes good bacteria
Bentonite clay helps boost probiotics in the body by removing harmful bacteria, toxins and heavy metals from the gut wall. In doing so, it helps improve brain function, increase immunity and prevent the malabsorption of nutrients from your food.
Alleviates digestive problems
Due to its ability to neutralize bacteria and viruses, gastrointestinal problems like nausea and IBS can be relieved with bentonite clay. Same goes for your pets, too!
Makes the mouth less susceptible to bacteria and toxins
The antibacterial properties of bentonite clay help keep your teeth, gums and tongue healthy. This is why it’s become such a popular ingredient in natural toothpaste and mouth rinses.
My Picks for the Best Bentonite Clay for Internal Use
Whether you buy online or in store, you’ll have plenty of brands to choose from. To save you some time, here are some of the more popular options for food-grade bentonite clay:
This clay from Fossil Power is safe for both internal and external use. It comes with no fillers, preservative or additives and is available in 5lb and 21lb sizes. It works perfectly for oral hygiene, DIY deodorant and detoxification.
- A little goes a long way.
- It works fast for digestive issues.
- It is pretty easy to mix.
- The package it comes in doesn’t reseal properly.
Unlike some other bentonite clays, Pure Clay isn’t mined from the surface but rather a deep subterranean vein where no pathogens or toxins can reach.
- It doesn’t get chunky when mixed with water.
- Quite versatile and works well for various uses.
- Has an ultra-fine texture.
- There have been complaints of slimy poo (Sorry, I couldn’t think of a less gross way to say that!).
Clay Terra bentonite clay is made of calcium from the smectite family of clay. It’s been used internally to clear stressed bowels as well as decrease candida overgrowth.
- Almost instant result
- It can cause dehydration, so drink lots of water
Internal cleansing is more important than ever with poor dietary choices, heavy environmental pollution and chronically high stress levels. If you’ve never considered bentonite clay for internal use, you might want to take a second look at it. Your gut, skin and body overall will thank you later.
Side note: If you’re looking for a complete nutritional detox program that’s laid out for you step-by-step, I have some information I want to share with you. Read more here.