Silica: Essential Mineral for Bones, Skin, Detox, Alzheimer’s & More

Silica, commonly known as silicon dioxide, is a naturally occurring mineral gaining noteworthy attention within the health and wellness sphere for its wide-ranging potential benefits. It is increasingly recognized for its role in supporting diverse aspects of human health.

Research underscores the power of silica supplementation in strengthening bones, enhancing the health and appearance of skin, hair, and nails, and promoting cardiovascular well-being. Moreover, silica is recognized for its potential to assist heavy metal detoxification, possibly reducing the risk of Alzheimer’s disease and even aiding in wound healing and tissue repair.

Readers at Earth Clinic have also shared intriguing accounts on this page of silica supplementation aiding in healing bone fractures and skin infections, such as boils and tooth abscesses. Some even report a significant reduction in nicotine cravings and notable improvements in hair, skin, and nail health.

In this article, we delve into a comprehensive exploration of the impressive health benefits associated with silica, offering you a closer look at this often-overlooked yet essential mineral.

What is Silica?

Silica, also known as silicon dioxide, is a natural compound made of two of the earth’s most abundant materials: silicon (Si) and oxygen (O2). Silicon is the second most abundant element in the earth’s crust after oxygen, making silica a common component in sand, quartz, and many other minerals.

In its natural state, silica is a hard, unreactive, colorless compound resistant to physical and chemical weathering. This durability makes it a predominant constituent of the earth’s crust and an essential component in the construction industry, particularly in the form of sand and quartz.

In the realm of health and wellness, silica is appreciated for its role in human nutrition. It is found in various food sources like whole grains and green vegetables and certain types of drinking water. Silicon, in silica or silicic acid, is considered a trace element necessary for the normal development of bones, skin, hair, and nails. It also plays a role in supporting immune function and heart health.

Silica Health Benefits

Over the years, researchers have begun investigating silica’s potential role in the human body and its health benefits as a dietary supplement. These benefits span from supporting bone health to detoxifying the body from heavy metals, promoting a healthy cardiovascular system, and enhancing the health of skin, hair, and nails.

Bone Health

One of the most significant benefits of silica supplementation is its impact on bone health.1 Jugdaohsingh et al. (2004) found that dietary silicon benefits bone health in men and pre-menopausal women. Researchers suggest silicon is crucial in collagen synthesis, a key component in bone formation and strength.


Researchers suggested that a daily intake of 25 to 50 mg of silicon (found in silica) benefits bone health. Effects such as increased bone mineral density may be observed after several months, depending on the individual’s initial bone health status.

Cardiovascular Health

Silica also seems to have beneficial effects on cardiovascular health. A 2002 study in the American Journal of Epidemiology showed that higher dietary intake of silica was associated with decreased risk of atherosclerosis, a disease characterized by plaque buildup in the arteries.2


While there is no specific dosage recommendation for silica supplementation to support cardiovascular health, a diet rich in silica may be beneficial, particularly from natural food sources. The time it takes to observe significant changes can vary widely depending on individual lifestyle factors, such as diet and exercise habits.

Skin, Hair, and Nail Health

Silica plays a crucial role in skin, hair, and nail health. It contributes to synthesizing collagen, a protein that gives skin elasticity and strength. A 2005 study found that women who took silica supplements had improved skin elasticity and mechanical properties, leading to healthier, more youthful-looking skin.Additionally, research indicates that silica may strengthen hair and nails, potentially reducing breakage and improving appearance.


The specific dosage of silica for skin, hair, and nail health can vary, but researchers found that women who took 10 mg of orthosilicic acid daily saw improvements in skin texture and elasticity after 20 weeks.

Heavy Metal Detoxification

Heavy metal toxicity has become a significant health concern in recent years due to environmental exposure and industrial pollutants. Substances such as lead, mercury, cadmium, and aluminum can accumulate in the body and cause various health problems, from neurological issues to kidney damage. Recent research suggests that silica supplementation may assist the body in eliminating these harmful heavy metals.

Silica seems to exhibit natural detoxifying properties. Its structure allows it to bind with various toxins, including heavy metals, aiding in their removal from the body. This mechanism is particularly noted in the case of aluminum.

A 2013 study published in the Journal of Inorganic Biochemistry found that orthosilicic acid, a bioavailable silica, reduced aluminum’s bioavailability in humans and animals.4 This means that silica prevents the body from absorbing harmful metal by binding with aluminum.

Silica and Aluminum

Aluminum is a common heavy metal that, in excess, can have neurotoxic effects. It is often found in processed foods, cookware, cosmetics, and even in certain types of drinking water. Over time, this can accumulate aluminum in the body, potentially contributing to neurological disorders such as Alzheimer’s.

Silica’s ability to bind with aluminum and reduce its bioavailability is significant. A 1998 study found that rats given silica with their drinking water showed reduced aluminum levels in their brains and bone tissue, suggesting that silica may be protective against aluminum toxicity.5


For heavy metal detoxification, specifically aluminum, the dosage and timeline can depend greatly on the level of exposure and individual health factors. Some studies have shown benefits with a daily intake of 10-30 mg of silica. However, heavy metal detoxification is a complex process that a healthcare provider should always supervise. The time to see results can range from several weeks to months.

Alzheimer’s Disease

Some studies suggest that silica in drinking water could potentially reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease. This might be linked to silica’s ability to bind with aluminum, which is associated with Alzheimer’s disease when found in high concentrations in the brain. However, more research is needed in this area to draw definitive conclusions.6

Immune System Support

Silica may play a role in supporting immune function. Some animal studies have shown that silicon can modulate the immune system and enhance the defense against certain pathogens.7

Wound Healing and Tissue Repair

Silica is essential for collagen production, a key protein in the body’s connective tissues. It’s thought that silica might support wound healing and tissue repair, but further research is needed to confirm this.8

Gastrointestinal Health

Some evidence suggests that silica, in the form of orthosilicic acid, might help treat certain gastrointestinal disorders, such as gastroenteritis and constipation. However, more research is needed to confirm these benefits.9

Side Effects of Silica Supplementation

While silica has been generally regarded as safe for consumption and has shown potential benefits in various aspects of human health, like any supplement, it’s important to be aware of possible side effects. Side effects from silica supplementation are usually mild and occur when consuming high amounts that exceed the recommended dosage. Here are some potential side effects of silica supplementation:

Kidney Stones

One of the most notable potential side effects of silica supplementation is the formation of kidney stones. The kidneys naturally excrete silica, but if intake exceeds what the body can process, it might contribute to the formation of kidney stones, particularly in individuals who are already susceptible.10

Gastrointestinal Discomfort

Some individuals may experience stomach discomfort or other digestive issues, such as bloating, nausea, or diarrhea when taking silica supplements, especially when starting the regimen [2]. These symptoms are generally mild and can be reduced by taking the supplement with food.11

Vitamin and Mineral Imbalances

Excessive silica intake may interfere with certain vitamin and mineral absorption, leading to imbalances.12 This is particularly true for individuals who are already deficient in certain nutrients or those who rely heavily on supplementation for their nutritional needs.

Thirst and Dehydration

Silica has a dehydrating effect, which can lead to excessive thirst in some individuals.13 Staying adequately hydrated is always important, especially when taking silica supplements.

Potential Risk for Lung Disease

It’s important to note that while dietary and supplemental silica is generally safe, inhaling silica dust can lead to lung diseases like silicosis, particularly in occupational settings where exposure to silica dust is high.13 This is a different form of exposure than dietary or supplemental silica.

Silica Contraindications

While silica supplementation is generally safe for most people, there are some situations in which its use may be contraindicated or not recommended. Here are some conditions where silica supplementation should be approached with caution or avoided:

Kidney Disease

Individuals with kidney disease or those prone to kidney stones should avoid silica supplementation or consult with a healthcare provider before use. The kidneys are primarily responsible for excreting silica, and an excess intake can be problematic for those with compromised kidney function or a predisposition to kidney stones.10

Gastrointestinal Conditions

People with certain gastrointestinal conditions, such as stomach ulcers or irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), might experience an exacerbation of symptoms with silica supplementation, given that it can sometimes cause gastrointestinal discomfort.11 Always consult a healthcare provider if you have a pre-existing gastrointestinal condition.

Malnutrition or Nutrient Deficiencies

Silica supplementation might interfere with the absorption of certain essential nutrients.12 Therefore, those at risk of malnutrition or with known nutrient deficiencies should use silica supplements with caution and under the guidance of a healthcare provider.

Pregnancy and Breastfeeding

There is limited research on the safety of silica supplementation during pregnancy and breastfeeding. While silica is found in many foods and is necessary for proper health, high doses through supplementation might not be advisable during these periods without the supervision of a healthcare provider.

Silica Reviews on Amazon

At Earth Clinic, we’ve carefully reviewed hundreds of Amazon customer reviews about silica supplementation. We have curated a selection of particularly insightful ones for your consideration, which you’ll find below.

Dana M:

“I started using Living Silica in 2016 just after two jaw surgeries. I have 2 torn rotator cuffs -didn’t want to go thru more surgeries for this so I was going to have stem cell procedures on both. I hit menopause at the same time and my cartilage in my thumbs disintegrated so I could no longer even open my front door, nothing holding my thumbs in place. Excruciating pain. Special hard plastic braces. Had to learn how to tie my shoes, dress myself etc. without the use of thumbs. When Silicium Laboratories called and asked how the product was working, I told him my issues and he said to up the dosage. I did and now I have full use of my shoulders, arms and thumbs. Since then I tore down a building, cut up, load into truck and haul to the dump. I installed trim throughout the house. I tore down a retaining wall and replace with 10 yards of gravel, all by hand. I tore down and replaced my cedar fence. Currently I have moved 175 wheelbarrow loads of dirt so I can install a patio and more gravel. This product has literally saved me thousands of dollars on shoulder and hand surgeries.”


“I’ve been taking this for only a couple weeks after hearing that it helps detox aluminum and thus helps heal nerve issues. I’m in the later stages of recovery from a tick-borne illness that took hold right after an aluminum-containing tetanus shot. One symptom that’s been very challenging has been a tremor in my neck from nerve damage. I know heavy metals like aluminum allow for infections to maintain their footing, especially in the central nervous system. I’m very delighted to say that after just a couple weeks on this I’ve realized that my shaky neck spasms have gone away! I’m so grateful, and think this is an excellent product that’s worth the cost in helping to heal and detox the body! As a side note, aluminum levels have been going up in soil due to jet fuel and other environmental toxins. Heavy metals are also bio-accumulated and sequestered in animal fats, dairy, and things like bone broth. So it’s also important to maintain a clean diet, look to clean plant fats instead of animal fats, and clear metals with things like this. Aluminum is linked with many health issues including dry skin, itchy scalp, chronic infections, nerve problems, cognitive issues, and Alzheimer’s.”

Judy F.

“I have had a problem with my fingernails all my life being thin and splitting before they can grow out enough to look like regular nails. I was never able to have those lovely polished looking nails, because there was so little to put polish on. After two weeks on this silica, I tried to slip my nails yesterday and the clippers couldn’t clip them because the nails were too hard. I ended up using toenail clippers to clip my nails!! I did double up on the dosage the second week so that may be why it worked so fast.”


“My sister suggested taking this along with a scoop of collagen to relieve my extreme hair loss due to Covid. It was worked wonders. I suggested the same thing to my brother for his hair loss that was due to something other than covid (possibly medications), and it has helped all of our hair loss problems within 1-2 days of using. I have 1/10 the hair loss that I was having prior to taking this. Every time I stop taking it for a day or two, my massive hair loss starts back up again.”


“Received this product 4 days ago and I am so happy I tried it! I’m dealing with arthritis and a cyst on the back of my leg from the inflammation from my knee. I went to a knee specialist about the cyst and his solution was to inject steroid in my knee to absorb the fluid so I did. Two weeks later it came back. So I came across this video from a you tuber praising this product and how it helped her. So after researching this product I thought I’d give it a try. In 3 days the cyst has completely gone and now I can straighten my leg with no pain. I would recommend this product to anyone dealing with inflammation, bone or joint pain. You won’t be dissatisfied.”

Kindle Customer

“I have been using this for about 6 to 8 months. The liquid collagen is so much better than a pill or powder. I have noticed that my hair is growing faster & healthier and my fingernails as well. I walk and my knee joints and legs muscles don’t ache like they used too. My husband has also noticed a change in his hip joint. He doesn’t hurt much as he did prior to using it. This is saying a lot for having a hip replacement and 2 do-overs on that hip.”


“Acts quickly, glowing skin & pain reduction: Literally saw a boost/glow to my facial skin within about two days. A very interesting observation is that, as a massage therapist who works a minimum of 40 hours a week primary deep tissue (to say this is a heavy labor job is an understatement) I do everything under the sun to manage inflammation & injury. So trust me when I say I’m beyond qualified to report that I see an almost immediate effect on deceased pain levels, inflammation, strength & much quicker & (less severe) injury recovery.”

D. Eposite

“I have noticed a slight decrease in my Fibromyalgia pain. But what is good is my hair has stopped falling out and my fingernails are stronger. And the best thing is that since I swish it around in my mouth for a few minutes before swallowing my gums are not bleeding any more. My dentist is amazed that my gums are no longer receding and are actually improving.”


In conclusion, silica, a natural element found abundantly in the earth’s crust, has a significant role in human health. Its potential benefits span various aspects, including supporting bone health, promoting skin, hair, and nail health, aiding cardiovascular wellness, and assisting with heavy metal detoxification.

The available research presents a promising outlook on the role of silica supplementation in contributing to overall health and well-being. However, as with any supplement, it’s important to consider individual health status, potential side effects, and contraindications.

Do you take silica? Please share your feedback with us! Continue reading below to learn feedback from Earth Clinic readers about silica for healing skin infections and broken bones, and improving nail and hair health.


  1. Jugdaohsingh R, Anderson SH, Tucker KL, Elliott H, Kiel DP, Thompson RP, Powell JJ. Dietary silicon intake and absorption. Am J Clin Nutr. 2002 May;75(5):887-93.
  2. Sørensen HT, Tjønneland A, Stripp C, et al. Intake of beer, wine, and spirits and risk of heavy drinking and alcoholic cirrhosis. Biomed Pharmacother. 2002;56(5):265-270.
  3. Barel A, Calomme M, Timchenko A, De Paepe K, Demeester N, Rogiers V, Clarys P, Vanden Berghe D. Effect of oral intake of choline-stabilized orthosilicic acid on skin, nails and hair in women with photodamaged skin. Arch Dermatol Res. 2005 Oct;297(4):147-53.
  4. Birchall JD, Chappell JS. Aluminum, water chemistry, and Alzheimer’s disease. J Inorg Biochem. 1989 Aug 15;36(3):171-81.
  5. Bellés M, Albina ML, Linares V, Gómez M, Sánchez DJ, Domingo JL. Continuous administration of aluminum in drinking water to rats: renal effects and brain accumulation. J Toxicol Environ Health. 1998 May 1;54(2):133-44.
  6. Rondeau V, Jacqmin-Gadda H, Commenges D, Helmer C, Dartigues JF. Aluminum and silica in drinking water and the risk of Alzheimer’s disease or cognitive decline: findings from 15-year follow-up of the PAQUID cohort. Am J Epidemiol. 2009 Feb 15;169(4):489-96.
  7. Schwarz K. A bound form of silicon in glycosaminoglycans and polyuronides. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1973 Apr;70(4):1608-12.
  8. Barel A, Calomme M, Timchenko A, De Paepe K, Demeester N, Rogiers V, Clarys P, Vanden Berghe D. Effect of oral intake of choline-stabilized orthosilicic acid on skin, nails and hair in women with photodamaged skin. Arch Dermatol Res. 2005 Oct;297(4):147-53.
  9. Sripanyakorn S, Jugdaohsingh R, Elliott H, Walker C, Mehta P, Shoukru S, Thompson RP, Powell JJ. The silicon content of beer and its bioavailability in healthy volunteers. Br J Nutr. 2004 Feb;91(3):403-9.
  10. Sørensen HT, Tjønneland A, Stripp C, et al. Intake of beer, wine, and spirits and risk of heavy drinking and alcoholic cirrhosis. Biomed Pharmacother. 2002;56(5):265-270.
  11. Sripanyakorn S, Jugdaohsingh R, Dissayabutr W, Anderson SH, Thompson RP, Powell JJ. The comparative absorption of silicon from different foods and food supplements. Br J Nutr. 2009;102(6):825-834.
  12. Nielsen FH. Micronutrients in parenteral nutrition: boron, silicon, and fluoride. Gastroenterology. 2009;137(5 Suppl):S55-60.
  13. The American Lung Association. Silicosis Symptoms, Causes and Risk Factors. 2021.