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Brain fog. Fatigue. Forgetfulness. Feeling unmotivated. How many people, especially mothers, experience these symptoms?
I know I have, particularly since becoming a mom. “Prego-brain” that extended far past pregnancy impacted my mental function as well as my emotional health. To the point of feeling embarrassed about my intellectual capacity, I felt like my mind was falling apart. I’d forget my train of thought mid-sentence. I’d take months to read a book because I couldn’t understand my reading. I disliked going to social events because I didn’t want people to talk to me and think I was stupid. I was disappointed because I never thought my mind would be sacrificed for the sake of my motherhood. When I finally began to accept that the joys and sweetness of being a mom was worth the loss of my intellectual self, I found a solution.
Even though the symptoms above are common to many diseases and disorders, I’ve found that my mental dullness was 90% gone after I added boron, the trace mineral, into my life. I know this probably sounds too good to be true, but I assure you, it’s not! This little miracle improves the brain’s electrical activity, cognitive performance, and short-term memory, but that is just the tip of the iceberg (1). I’d hate to claim that boron is a “cure-all,” but…it seems like it might be the simple solution to many big problems, including:
Boron prevents and treats prostate cancer (2, 3), cervical cancer (4), lung cancer (5), and multiple and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (6, 7). It also may relieve the negative effects of traditional chemotherapy (8).
2. Preventing and treating osteoporosis
Boron is essential for the growth, maintenance, and healing of bone (9, 10).
3. Hormone balance
Boron improves the body’s use of testosterone, estrogen, and vitamin D (11, 12, 13).
4. Wound Healing
Boron reduces time and increases effectiveness of wound healing (14, 15).
5. Reduces inflammation
Boron reduces levels of inflammatory biomarkers (16, 17), raises levels of antioxidant enzymes (18), protects against oxidative stress induced by pesticides and heavy-metal toxicity (18, 19), and even increases the absorption of magnesium (20), which is commonly used for pain management (21).
In locations where dietary boron intake is greater than or equal to 1 mg/day, the estimated incidence of arthritis ranges from 20% to 70%. On the other hand, in areas where boron intake is usually 3-10 mg/day, the estimated incidence of arthritis ranges from 0% to 10% (2). The connection between boron and arthritis was first made well-known by Dr. Rex E. Newnham, Ph.D., D.O., N.D., who cured his own arthritis by ingesting the naturally-occurring mineral salt commonly known as borax (borax is 11% boron) (22). His discovery eventually became so popular that he asked a pharmaceutical company to market it, but they used the information against him because it was tanking their profits in the arthritis industry. As a result of Dr. Newnham’s “cheap fix cure-all,” he was fined, and any compound containing boron in any concentration was labeled as poison in Australia (23). More on this story will be listed in the “further reading” section.
In the studies referenced above, none of boron’s beneficial effects appear at intakes less than 3 mg/day (1), but dosage recommendations vary depending on who you’re talking to. For example, Dr. Jorge Flechas, MD, recommends that adults take doses as high as 30 to 70 mg of boron per day to prevent the “ravages of [physical] aging” (24). Whatever dosage is most beneficial probably depends on the individual, and toxicity concerns are not an issue until around 20,000 mg of boron a day for an adult (24). The bigger concern in this discussion is not the toxicity level (since it’s so hard to reach) (25), but actually the widespread deficiency and its effects.
So, how important is it to get adequate boron intake? Consider that boron deficiency, which is highly correlated with elevated levels of high-sensitivity C-reactive protein, is associated with an increased risk for breast cancer (26), obesity and metabolic syndrome (MetS) in children (27), atherosclerosis (30, 38), unstable angina, insulin resistance (38), type 2 diabetes (28, 29), nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) (30, 31), metastatic prostate cancer (32), lung cancer (5, 33), adult depression, depression in childhood and psychosis in young adult life (34, 35), coronary heart disease, and stroke (1, 36, 37, 38). Unfortunately, this crucial trace mineral is significantly lacking in our soil…unless you live in Israel or Turkey, where it’s plentiful!
Now that the relevance of boron has been established, how do we get boron? Transdermal and oral options are available. Orally, trace mineral drops are a great way to get boron. Here is a popular brand. Transdermally, some people prefer to add borax to their baths, along with baking soda and epsom salt for a triple effect: 2 tablespoons borax, 2 cups epsom salt, and 1 cup baking soda (39).
To bring this post full-circle, I’ll share a couple more benefits I’ve personally experienced from increasing my boron intake. Along with increased mental function, I’ve noticed that my teeth no longer feel “wiggly,” reading is nearly effortless, and my sleep is FANTASTIC. Unless my baby wakes me up during the night (which happens often!), I usually don’t even move during my sleep. It took a few days for all these wonderful benefits to show, so I am glad I stuck with it!
Would you ever try increasing your boron intake?
1. Boron boosts cognitive function and has eliminated my “prego-brain.”
2. Boron prevents and treats cancer.
3. Boron prevents and treats osteoporosis.
4. Boron balances sex hormones.
5. Boron accelerates wound healing.
6. Boron reduces inflammation and increases magnesium absorption.
7. Boron prevents, treats, and has cured arthritis.
Dr. Newnham’s Boron Connection: http://www.arthritistrust.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Boron-and-Arthritis.pdf
The Borax Conspiracy: http://www.health-science-spirit.com/borax.htm
Dr. Jorge Flechas Boron: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TJp7SW1pY2I
Disclaimer: All information on this blog is for informational purposes only. I am not a licensed medical professional. Please discuss any dietary or lifestyle changes, supplements, or medical questions with your doctor.
Diane Stanislowski is a wife, mother, and researcher with the goal of restoring the practice of traditional holistic approaches to wellness and sharing evidence-based information with the public.
She lives in Grand Forks North Dakota with her husband and daughter Jane, and receives raw milk and pastured meats from Bartlett Farms.