There is a popular Chinese saying that if one eats a plentiful amount of seaweed and sea vegetables, the hair grows stronger, thicker and blacker (which is always heavily sought after for Asians, as black voluminous and thick hair was a sign of beauty and youth). Though sea vegetables do wonders for the body and hair, there is another mineral Mother nature created that is often overlooked and not talked about as much—silica. Silica is a trace mineral that strengthens the body’s connective tissues – muscles, tendons, hair, ligaments, nails, cartilage, and bone – and is vital for healthy skin and bones.
As people age, the source of silica in the bodies becomes depleted, which is why people have wrinkles, dry skin, brittle nails and bones and hair that lacks shine. The beauty industry tapped into the collagen importance for anti-aging, and while maintaining collagen topically on the skin improves elasticity and beauty, it is just as important to have it created naturally in the body from the foods we consume. Silica has been regarded as nature’s building block and is a universal element in the human body that can be found free and soluble in water or combined with proteins and lipids, and has an exact relationship to mineral absorption. Its most important purpose is of immune nature, because the Silica partakes in the manufacturing process of antibodies/antigens and it encourages the conversion of LB (Lymphocyte B) into LT (Lymphocyte T) (Jash Botanicals.com). Along with iron, these two key minerals are necessary for the body to carry ongoing metabolic processes and restore vitality and youth to the skin, hair and bones (NaturalNews.com)
Not only does silica improve the skin, hair, nails and bones, it helps in weight loss, as it destroys bad fats and curbs appetite so people do not crave the bad-for-you foods as much. We have learned that silica helps to slow down the degenerative and moisture-losing process of aging connective tissues, but another great function silica performs is its ability to protect and preserve teeth and gums from cavities by hardening the enamel. Silica also helps to prevent bleeding gums, gum atrophy, and recession.
There are compelling researches that point to aluminum in the body (overtime) as a possible cause and exacerbation of dementia and Alzheimer ’s disease. Silica has been proven to help avoid or alleviate these Alzheimer’s symptoms by preventing the body from absorbing aluminum. Aluminum can enter the body in the form of inhalation (factory workers), cooking acid foods in aluminum pans, antiperspirants, soy based infant formulas, aluminum based drugs, in the water we drink and in a great deal of processed foods we eat–silicon is easily lost in food processing, and when you eat food that is non-organic. (EOEarth.org).
Food sources of silica include leeks, green beans, garbanzo beans, dandelion, carrots, peppers, strawberries, apples, cucumber, mango, celery, asparagus, rhubarb, alfalfa, horsetail, stingling nettle, bananas, onions, tomatoes, potatoes, beets and turnips (SilicaFoods.com and RawForBeauty.com)
What are other amazing silica functions for the body? Detoxification helps bones absorb more calcium for stronger bones, aids in emotional management supporting neurological functions.
Read below for additional benefits:
• Silica aids in the repair and maintenance of vital lung tissues and defending them from pollution.
• Silica decreases swelling due to its positive effects on the lymphatic system.
• The presence of adequate Silica in the intestines will diminish inflammation of the intestinal tract. It can cause disinfection in the case of stomach and intestinal catarrh and ulcers. Silica can avert or clear up diarrhea and its opposite, constipation.
• Silica can assist in normalizing hemorrhoid tissues, while lessening lower back pain.
• Silica works as a supportive treatment for inflammation of the middle ear.
• Silica can assist diabetes by encouraging synthesis of elastase (an enzyme) inhibitor by the pancreas.
• Silica improves mobility by improving the elasticity of the joints.
• Silica may hinder the pain of osteoarthritis and rheumatism.
• Silica may stimulate cell metabolism and division.
• Silica delays the aging process.
• Silica beautifies hair with luster, elasticity and vigor.
• By taking part in the synthesis of elastin and collagen, Silica regenerates skin and the vascular walls.”
(Source: JashBotanicals.com, Photo Credit: healthy-hair-tips1.blogspot.com, sodahead.com).