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Bentonite Clay for Health: Home Remedies

Last Modified on Jul 05, 2015


Bentonite Clay Cures
Bentonite clay is a well-regarded natural remedy particularly favored as a detox agent. This includes detoxification of heavy metals.

Bentonite clay is a naturally alkaline substance that has been used medicinally for centuries. Its ability to expand in water and to ionically attract toxins and metallic ions has made it a popular natural remedy for a number of systemic conditions as well as for use as a topical treatment. Different variations of bentonite clay exist, based upon where it was pulled from the ground, with the major difference being in the specific balance of certain elemental components. It is sometimes called Montmorillonite after one of the clay's principle crystalline components.

Natural Cures: For use as a laxative, as a detoxing agent, in heavy metal chelation, as part of a poultice for wounds, and in skin care and treatment of skin conditions. Some studies have indicated bentonite clay as effective against candida infections.


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User Reviews




Abscessed Tooth   1  0   

Posted by Diane (Sacramento, California) on 01/01/2008

[YEA]  Montmorillite form of Bentonite clay. I had an absessed tooth that broke off. The absess was not really painful but my dentist advised a root canal because the tooth was dead. How I wish I would have tried the clay first and just had a temp crown put on. I continued to have a soreness at the root. The pocket of infection had been there for years. I didn't want to do the antibiotic thing or have more work done, so I tried the clay. I simply tucked a pea sized bit of clay with a bit of cotton up at the root where the pain was. The next morning it was somewhat better. I continued for months until every bit of the soreness was gone. It took time but I just know I probably could have healed it without the root canal. I still do it once in awhile because I know dead teeth in your mouth infect the body eventually, per Dr. Weston Price. The one advantage?...It takes almost no effort to do.

Replied by Gene R.
Great Barrington, Ma, Usa
02/12/2012

[WARNING!]   WARNING! You do NOT want to mess around with an abcessed tooth. They are extremely dangerous and must be treated quickly. The infection can, in a matter of a few hours, travel down the neck and into the heart or up into the brain. This is what used to kill people in the old days. DO NOT TAKE CHANCES WITH A TOOTH ABCESS!!! See a dentist ASAP! If you can't afford a dentist, try looking for free dental clinics in your area.
Replied by Oscar
Syracuse, New York, Usa
02/12/2012

I very much agree with Gene R. From Barrington, An abscessed tooth is NOT something to play around with. A good dentist is needed for this potentially dangerous condition and is very treatable by a good dentist. With timely care the tooth might be salvagable. And it may not be. The longer you wait for such care the less likely the tooth will be salvagable. In the GOOD OLD DAYS: the ONLY remedy was tooth extraction and this was what was done. Some conditions DO require timely care by a qualified doctor. An abscessed tooth is one of those conditions....Oscar

Acid Reflux   3  0   

Posted by Cc (Atlanta, Ga) on 01/22/2012

[YEA]  Bentonite Clay: Try it for acid reflux, it works! Mix 1/4 teaspoon to 1/2 teaspoon with 1/2 cup of water when you need it. It just seems to nuetralize the acid!

Make sure to take it 1 hour BEFORE you take your prescriptions & drink lots of water throughout the day. Hope this helps.

Posted by Leelannee (Sussex, Nj) on 09/21/2009

[YEA]  I've had acid reflux for months and while using the "watercure" has given me some relief, if I slack off on it at all I have persistent pain/burning the next day. I have tried charcoal, but it takes 30 minutes or more to kick in, and sometimes I need a second dose, and I have tried baking soda in water, but that seems to last only a couple of hours. Last night I tried bentonite and not only was the relief almost instant, but lasted for over 12 hours. I just tried a second dose and again, instant relief!

What I do is take a small jar (8oz) of warm water and mix in about a tablespoon of bentonite. I then let it sit out overnight so that the clay becomes saturated with the water; this will prevent it from absorbing too much water in your gut and possibly causing constipation. This makes a jelly-like consistency; if it's too watery, then stir in a bit more clay, or if it's too stiff then add more water. Then I keep it in the fridge and use as needed. For the acid reflux I take 2 teaspoons and chase it with water. It does not have an unpleasant flavor or a gritty texture. The coolness from keeping it in the fridge is soothing to the throat, and could also be soothing on the skin for poison ivy, sunburn or cooking burns, insect bites, etc.

Replied by Leelannee
Sussex, Nj
09/27/2009

Just a correction and update: it takes about 2 tablespoons of bentonite in 4-6 oz of water to make the "gel". This is still working great for me! In fact, I skipped it yesterday, so it's been a day and a half since I've taken it, and still no acid! Before this I was taking the "watercure" every 2-4 hours, before I tried that I would be coughing & in pain ALL DAY, and I usually woke up already feeling bad.

Posted by GT (Vero Beach, Florida) on 08/24/2007

[YEA]  Used Medicinal grade Bentonite clay for acid reflux,works within a few sips. Get a small bottle of water put in a teaspoon of bentonite clay (PH is 9.1) shake hard so it disolves in the water and take some sips. You will notice within the second sip the acid starts to calm down. A note; People with bad acid reflux have trouble sleeping, magnesium gets depleted when acid is on overload, a few sips of bentonite clay before bed you sleep like a baby. Magnesium' has a 'calming' effect for the mind and the physical muscles. There is magnesium in bentonite clay.

Acne   1  0   

Posted by Stacey (Greensboro, Nc) on 10/23/2009

[YEA]  I use the sodium clay for acne externally. A thin coat of clay really helps my oily skin. I've tried it internally, but I really didn't feel it was benefiting me in any way other than it did help stomach acid problems.

Asperger's Syndrome   0  0   

Posted by Christine (Melbourne, Fl) on 05/25/2010

[BETTER BUT NOT CURED]  My daughter has Aspergers Syndrome, a form of autism. I gave her two "00" capsules of bentonite clay every day. She was 17 at the time. In less than a month, she had no more tactile issues (could not STAND the sensation of light touches among other tactile issues) AND had spontaneous empathy for strangers!!!! Something that does not happen with any form of autism that I know of!

The only caution is because she is a menstrating female, if she gets too much bentonite clay, she will occasionally go anemic. Iron, despite being needed by the body, is still a heavy metal. So we cut back when that happens. Now she only takes is maybe twice a week and we have not been having problems with anemia.

Bentonite Clay Side Effects   0  0   

Posted by Sarah (Los Angeles, Ca) on 01/22/2010

[SIDE EFFECTS]  OK- I THINK i had a severe reaction to bentonite clay... I was starting a cleanse 2 days ago- so had only juiced and eaten brown rice that day... I had some Bentonite I use for baths, ( I think it's the sodium one- but the person I bought it from claims he takes a tablespoon of it every day w/ no problems)and in the evening as an afterthought I added about 2 tsps. to my protein shake... it made it really thick so I added more water. I downed it and in about 3 hours I came down with the worst stomach cramping, diharea and vomiting I have EVER experienced... I mean tore-the-toiletpaper-holder-off-the-wall violent puking!!! It lasted for about 6 hours that severe- with a fever the entire time. The vomiting/ diharea subsided but my fever remained the rest of the day... am wondering if anyone has any ideas if this could've been severe detoxing, or reaction to the clay or stomach virus coincidence? I called poison control and they scared me to death about possibly rupturing my intestines, so I went to the DR the next afternoon and he basically sent me home with no advice (waste of $!!).

I am weak 2 days later and am still waiting on a bowel movement of any kind...? any input appreciated...

Replied by Sarah
La, Ca
01/28/2010

OK- update... I am now wondering if it might have been a gallbladder or pancreatitis attack? Either that or Norovirus ( saw on the news was going around)... but I'm wondering if the clay could stimulate a gallbladder/ liver cleanse that would give symptoms like what I experienced...
Replied by Bella2718
Richmond, Virginia
03/02/2010

You used the incorrect form of bentonite clay. There are two types of bentonite clay, sodium and calcium. Sodium Bentonite clay should not be used for internal use because of its extreme swelling properties and it is geared towards commercial use. Calicium bentonite clay is the form that is used for internal use. It absorbs but at a lesser degree vs. sodium. Calcium bentonite is not used in industrial applications.
Replied by Rsw
Canton, Oh
11/08/2011

[SIDE EFFECTS]   I took it last week, 1 tablespoonful, and had the exact reaction! I bought it already mixed in a bottle with directions to take it by mouth. I apparently doesn't agree with some people because I rarely get sick, much less to that degree. I might put it in my bath but no more ingesting it for me.
Replied by Jesse
Washington, Dc
06/20/2012

From what I believe I have learned, some of you are wrong. The two types of clay are both ingestible. The Sodium is best because it absorbs the most toxins. The Calcium is not so good because it won't absorb much but I have seen it stated that the Calcium is better suited to enter your blood stream and cleanse that part of your body. So they both have a purpose. When people have problems it is proably because:

1.They aren't using food grade clay.

2.They are using too much to start off with.

3.They are using Sodium clay, which expands a lot, and not giving it eough time to absorb water and expand fully before drinking.

4. They aren't drinking lots of water after ingestion like recomended.

Try mixing it with water and letting it sit for hours before drinking. Afterwards drink a whole bunch of water.

Boils   1  0   

Posted by Liz (Scranton, PA) on 03/02/2008

[YEA]  I am definitely alkalizing as it makes perfect sense. Also using turmeric, Celtic sea salt, and greens. Internal health may take time to achieve, but Ted's lemon/ ACV and baking soda really works for so many problems--quick too. ' I have boils for the first time. I have been mixing several teaspoons of bentonite clay with water, placing a glob over the boil and spreading it thickly over the surrounding area, then covering it all with gauze or a clean cloth. Last, I wrap securely with plastic. Keeps the area moist and the clay off sheets and clothes. This has worked wonders in only a day. Boils are no longer sore or swollen and the whole area is healing and drying beautifully. Change the poultice every 8-12 hours. I will keep it up for a week to make sure the infection is gone. Also will continue internal alkalizing. You do not have to spend a fortune on bentonite clay. I got mine on ebay from a company that sells it for fish ponds. It does keeps my pond water clear--probably for the same reason it heals people. Once on ebay search with words "clay koi" and that will bring you to a great inexpensive product-- 20 lbs of it! Thank you Earth Clinic, contributors, and especially Ted! Great info! Really helped me and others with so many problems! Liz

Burn Wound   1  0   

Posted by Angela (Antwerp, Belgium) on 07/17/2011

[YEA]  Ted is absolutely a genius. I really don't know where to begin about the calcium bentonite clay he suggested.

My fiance suffered a chemical burn wound years ago that resulted from exposure to Pregan Paste. After hundreds of skin grafts (and decades of suffering), the doctors could not seem to stop the burn wound from creating painful skin necrosis, over and over again. Her hand seemed to be sensitive to everything from sun to dish soap to topical ointments designed to stop burns, not create them.

Well, Ted suggested calcium bentonite clay as a topical clay paste to apply to her skin. Needless to say, we were terrified because it seemed that everything that touched her hand would cause necrosis and with every recurrence of necrosis, she risked amputation of her hand. I hate to admit that fear caused me to wait on trying this solution, but it did.

So, I opted to try it first on my acne. I have never had a chronic problem with acne, but over the last year, it had become a nighmare. Blemishes became open wounds, my face was covered in black heads and white heads. Aesthetically, it was awful. Physically, it was extremely painful.

I suppose I should have tried it in one place, but I placed 1 T. of the powder in a plastic bowl, 2 T. of water and another T. of clay on top. I did not mix it, but let it sit for 2 minutes. It formed a clay quickly and easily on its own.

I spread it all over my face and allowed it to dry. It was itchy and I could see my face turning quite red. I was a bit concerned, but trusted Ted's advice to leave it on until it dried and to apply it twice a day.

It's now been 48 hours and 6 mosquito bites disappeared from the evening before. No itching and no redness. Four significant wounds closed and I've not seen a new blemish appear, which has not been the case in months. It seems that calcium bentonite clay not only removes excess oil, dead skin cells and toxins, but also increases circulation, which speeds healing.

But what is more miraculous? My fiance's hand began to turn dark purple the same day I used the clay for the first time. This happens every few months and needless to say, we became terribly concerned. This color change usually signals the beginning stages of necrosis.

We kept an eye on it and the skin on her hand turned gray (her hand is the only place where there has been necrosis and her hand has been subject to hundreds of skin grafts and 2 skin flaps that were rejected). To say we were alarmed would be an understatement. We had to do something and do something fast. Until now, hyperbaric oxygen treatment had been our only option and it isn't easy to get an appointment within 24 hours, which is how fast we need for her to get the treatment.

Because we knew the impending future, we took a BIG chance and applied it directly to her hand. Normally, trying to put any kind of topical product yields painful, dreadful results. She gave it 30 min to an hour to dry and then we washed it off. Nervously, we checked her hand closely for the result...

Circulation returned, her hand became very red and she had no pain (usually she has a painful, tingling sensation that she describes as "something eating away at her hand from the inside"). Within an hour of washing the clay away, her normal, healthy skin color had returned and now, 24 hours later, she still has no pain and her skin is still the healthy, pink color it is supposed to be. Just one application of this simple clay, used AT HOME, kept her out of the hyperbaric chamber and more importantly, NO surgery! Necrosis reversed completely!

Ted, words really cannot express our gratitute. Calcium bentonite clay was something we'd never heard of and it has quickly begun to heal my acne, open wounds and reversed the onset of her necrosis by either removing toxins or increasing circulation, but probably the result of both.

We have decided that calcium bentonite clay is something we will always keep in the house. For bug bites, acne, wound healing, toxin removal, improvement of circulation - it's a must have for any household. It is available from many sources from the United States and around the world.

Here's to everyone's health and healing!

Replied by Tavoshop.com
Long Beach, Usa
04/14/2012

I'm no genius but. Bentonite is suppose to bind with heavy metals. And iron is one of those heavy metals. When the skin turns red seemingly like magic, it is because I believe the bentonite clay attracts the iron rich blood to the surface. And interchanges with any toxins available to be absorbed. I love using bentonite clay on my skin. Internally. And in baths. Very great product made by mother earth!

Calcium Vs Sodium Clay   0  0   

Posted by Stacey (Greensboro, Nc) on 08/04/2009

Calcium Montmorillonite clay v. Sodium montmorillonite (Bentonite)?

I've been considering taking bentontite clay, but realized there are 2 different types: one dominant in sodium and the other calcium. I know that Bentontite is the "product name" of the clay, and I've seen respectable companies selling one or the other, but attributing the same properties to each. Is there a difference between the two if you want to take the clay internally?

Replied by Summer
La, Ca
10/23/2009

The really important thing to consider is how your body's digestive system works. Even if a Sodium Bentonite had the right balance of minerals, and had the right particle size to be absorbed into your bloodstream, and had good detoxification power from its ionization properties, you should not ingest it.

In your stomach, it will break apart with the acids and other liquids, but as it moves from the small intestine to the colon, it will become dehydrated by your body and it will clump back together. You will then have the unpleasant task of eliminating it. Or worse, it could become part of a constipation problem. In contrast, when you put a teaspoon of Calcium Montmorillonite clay into a glass of water, about half may fall to the bottom and half will stay suspended as a colloidal cloudiness. It will look milky. There is no clumping to worry about and stirring with a spoon is easy.

Another consideration with Sodium Bentonite is hinted at by its name...sodium. As if we don't get enough salt in our bodies, this clay is introducing more. In contrast calcium Bentonite has 2 or 3 times the calcium as sodium, and other pH balancing minerals such as potassium and magnesium to help your blood balance its electrolytes and keep you healthy.

Finally, Sodium Bentonites come from industrial producers. Their processing often introduces problems. They may claim to have sterilization processes, and they sometimes do...with irradiation, a process that reduces the ionic electrical potency of the compound. Irradiation is not acceptable for organic and holistic uses. Regardless, their operations are geared for commercial not natural or health products and contamination is always a possibility.

Sodium Bentonite may be a fine product for acne treatment or a poultice because of its absorptive properties. But why buy different clays when one source can be trusted to perform well for all needs.

Cold Sores   2  0   

Posted by Am (B.c.) on 07/05/2015

[YEA]  Yes I just tried Bentonite Clay on my cold sore and it relieves the pain and swelling..but found putting it on dry..considering it is wet it dried it faster...I was hoping it would have healed it faster .. I put it on a cut cuz I have eczema and over night it was totally closed up...I have been telling people about it..never hurts to have options in an emergency..

1 more thing I couldn't find any info on putting it on cold sores...I was just informed when I got mine from the healthfood store that they have a lemon balm lip balm and it did work in taking the swelling down.

Posted by Drew (Columbus, Ohio) on 08/29/2009

[YEA]  A buddy of mine turned me on to calcium bentonite clay for my overall health. the stuff is amazing. you can bathe in it, cook with it, eat it, brush with it, clean your hair with it. its mainly used in spas and things of that nature. anyways, I got the worst cold sore I've ever had. the entire left side of my upper lip, a little one on my nose, and a little one on my bottom lip. I've been reading this website and I remembered the clay I had. I added some water and made a paste out of it and I smeared it on the sores and went to bed. I woke up the next day and the pain was gone and the swelling had dropped tremendously. I washed it off and saw that the sore had diminished in size considerably. it feels really good on the sore and it really cleans up the sore. I use this overnight and it really helps. using it with other remedies, I find the sore heals much quicker. plus it feels GREAT

Detoxing   2  0   

Posted by Jrc (Los Angeles, Ca) on 12/20/2010

I have used bentonite clay in detoxes primarily geared toward colon cleansing using Dr. Bernard Jensen's Guide to Better Bowel Care and I have only seen positive results. This system uses various herbs and supplements, including psyllium husks and flax seed water to detoxify the body, get rid of old fecal matter and basically rid the body of many toxins over a period of at least 2 to 3 cycles of the program [this can take a year to complete them all.

I would suggest contacting a natural health practitioner or even your MD (the latter may suggest not doing it at all-often they can be wrong), but use your judgment since if you are already on various medications you may need to adapt this program or only use it if you are in fairly good health, but never stop taking your medication when on this program; however you may need to adapt it slightly. Why? This program has no food for about a week and your medication may require food. Additionally, if you take bentonite clay alone or without the proper amount of water it can have a negative side effect. This program mentions clay water which indicates it is water based or has added hydration which is completely necessary for this clay.

Posted by Codysmom (Alexandria, Va) on 12/31/2009

[YEA]  I have been taking bentonite clay for detoxing and really love it. I tried drinking it mixed with water but couldn't stand the taste. I now eat the clay with applesauce (1-2 tsp clay with 1 cup applesauce). I have also eaten it with yogurt. I found the applesauce with clay will make you very full for several hours, almost like an appetite suppressant, which is great for those that are dieting or cutting back.

Posted by Matthew (Brisbane, Qld) on 09/06/2008

[YEA]  Bentonite is fantastic for internal cleansing but like everything you must tailor the quantity to your own digestive system. I have been taking it for 4 years with positive results and have learned that regular intake of even a small amount is beneficial. It is a bacteriacide absorbs toxins and raises pH

Here's how I take it:

Add 1 liter of water to your blender.
Mix 100g of bentonite (approx 4 dessert spoons)
Blend for 1-2 minutes.
Pour 90% of this mix into a resealable food grade plastic or glass bottle. Discard the residue.

Now you have a smooth pourable base mixture. Add 50ml to 100ml* of this to a large glass and top with warm water. Warm water makes it easier to take. So you have a light clay drink 250ml - 300ml

Drink one glass in the morning and one afternoon or night. At least 30 - 40 minutes away from main meals.

DO NOT take it close to life sustaining medications as it could lessen the effect of the medication.

Take for a number of consecutive days. there is no magic number of days but generally it is beneficial when taken for a few days on a regular basis. It can be continuted for weeks at a time if so desired. I suggest starting at the lower level and increase if things are going ok. in other words if bowel movements become too slow or constipation occurs then cease the intake until you clear and resume if you wish.

Make sure to include plenty of fibre and water in your diet.

Personally I don't like to include psyillium husks with it. I find it a bit much for my system when combined & I get good results with the just Bentonite.

Initially it may make your bowel movement a bit sluggish or perhaps you'll eliminate later in the day but i have never experienced constipation from it as described in some posts. If you find the amount suggested above is still too much then lessen it until agreeable. it will still be working just a bit slower.

* 50ml - 100ml of this mix converts to 5 - 10gms of clay . It is not very much. The most I have taken at one time is 300ml (30gm of clay)of the mixture without diluting it. It was a bit hard to get down but I had a lot of energy all day. I have not repeated that amount as I would have to force it down and don't care to. Gentle persistence pays off.

Good Luck!


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