Back in November I posted about The Ultimate Detox Bath. I decided to try it out after I read about how toxins can build up in your body over time and a detoxification bath could help alleviate uncomfortable symptoms of toxin overload. One of the main ingredients in the Detox Bath recipe was bentonite clay…and ever since then I keep hearing more and more about the benefits of this ancient substance. And I mean ancient!
Healing clay has been used for thousands of years! The first recorded use of medicinal clay occurred in 2500 B.C. in Mesopotamia!
Needless to say…after reading up on this stuff…I was intrigued! And the more I read about it…the more intrigued I was. I mean something that is completely pure and natural (not to mention inexpensive) that can help alleviate so many different ailments? Sign me up!
So WHAT IS bentonite clay and HOW does it work?
Bentonite clay is derived from deposits of weathered volcanic ash. It is one of the most effective natural intestinal detoxifying agents available and has been recognized as such for centuries by native peoples around the world.
Technically, the clay first adsorbs toxins (heavy metals, free radicals, pesticides), attracting them to its extensive surface area where they adhere like flies to sticky paper; then it absorbs the toxins, taking them in the way a sponge mops up a kitchen counter mess.
There is also an electrical aspect to bentonite clay’s ability to bind and absorb toxins. Bentonite clay has a negative electrical charge, attracting positively charged molecules. As most toxins are positively charged, clay naturally rids the body of toxins as it pulls and holds the toxins into its core.
The following are just some of the ways that clay is used both internally and externally:
Soothing and Healing Skin
Hydrated clay can be applied externally as a poultice on cuts, bruises, insect bites, bee stings, boils, rashes, achy joints, acne, and burns. To apply a clay poultice, place a thick layer (¼ to 1 inch thick) over the affected area. Bentonite clay has tremendous drawing power, so it should be washed off before it dries completely– especially when used on burns or sensitive areas such as the face. If the area can be wrapped with cheese cloth or plastic wrap, the clay can be left on overnight without drying out.
To make a clay “gel”: mix approximately two parts water to one part dry clay to make a gel the consistency of mustard.
Clay baths draw toxins from the skin and through the pores. To enjoy a full-body detox, add 1 to 2 cups of bentonite clay to your bath once a week and soak for 20 minutes. The remaining clay sediment can be safely washed down the drain.
If you don’t have a bathtub, a clay foot bath is another effective way to draw toxins out of the body. For a foot bath, add about 3 tablespoons of clay to a pot of water that is as warm as you can stand. Soak your feet for about 30 minutes.
Bentonite clay is also associated with aiding in constipation, bloating and gas. Other digestive bentonite benefit uses throughout history include treatment of dysentery and bacterial food poisoning, and acting as a laxative. Before using bentonite clay for the mentioned digestive benefits, consult your physician.
For Beautiful Skin
Clay makes a fabulous facial mask, for shrinking pores, tightening and toning skin, removing impurities, sloughing off dead skin cells, and just making your skin look and feel great overall. It can also be used directly on pimples to reduce their size and inflammation and get rid of them faster.
Face Mask: For smooth and healthy skin, make a paste of bentonite and water and apply to face as a mask. Leave on for 20 minutes and wash off.
For Oral Health
Because of it’s excellent ability to bind to heavy metals and toxins as well as to provide minerals, Bentonite Clay can be used as a tooth powder. It is tasteless and relatively textureless.
To whiten and remineralize teeth, use bentonite mixed with water as an alkalizing and toxin removing mouth rinse. Mix 1/2 teaspoon of clay in 1/4 cup water in a small jar with a plastic lid and shake well. Rinse with the water for 1-2 minutes and repeat until gone.
Make a poultice of bentonite clay and water and apply externally to the affected area. Repeat as needed every hour until the infection is gone.
For Baby Powder
Plain bentonite clay makes a very soothing baby powder for use when there is infection or redness. It can also be made into a clay “mask” to help speed recovery in this area.
For Morning Sickness
Take 1/2 tsp of bentonite clay in water during early pregnancy to ward off morning sickness. Check with your doctor or medical professional before using during pregnancy.
For pets that are sick, vomiting or showing signs of illness, you can add bentonite to their water or mix and give orally with a dropper or syringe without the needle.
Now that you know how beneficial healing clay can be….I bet you’re ready to run out and get some! Not so fast. You’ll want to first make sure you’re getting a quality product…especially if you plan to take it internally. It just so happens that my little town is home to Redmond Clay, who markets an all-natural Utah bentonite clay used by the Fremont indians thousands of years ago. Redmond Clay is a completely natural bentonite clay, extracted from the earth and brought to you in its pure, natural state. I have personally tried their products and can confidently recommend them as a source.
With the growing concern about the dangers of traditional medicines, I’m pretty excited that the search for natural and safe alternatives has brought us back to this ancient healing substance!