Silicon is an ultra-trace element. In the mid 1970s studies at UCLA and other institutions demonstrated that silicon is an essential element required for the normal growth, development, and integrity of hair, skin, nails, mucous membranes, arteries, bones, cartilage and connective tissue. Silicon is also involved in collagen formation, the fibrous protein matrix which provides support for tendons, ligaments, cartilage and bones.

The best documented function of silicon is its actions in facilitating bone calcification and mineralization. Inadequate silicon intake has been associated with skeletal abnormalities including developmental deformity; weak, brittle nails and hair; thinning capillaries and arteries. Weak, bones, joints and connective tissue are major contributing factors to chronic musculoskeletal pain and disease. Supplemental silicon may be able to retard these age-related degenerative changes.

While silicon is exceptionally well tolerated at high doses, scientists currently estimate the human requirement for silicon to be between 5 to 20 mg per day. Diets rich is unrefined grains and whole foods, such as wheat bran and oats are a good source of silicon. The processing and refining of food substantially decreases the amount of silicon in our food. Furthermore, as we grow older, our ability to metabolize dietary silicon declines due to lower acid levels of the stomach. Therefore, silicon supplementation may be necessary to maintain healthy bones, joints, hair, nails, and connective tissue.

The reasons for silicon supplementation are:

  • Bones: Silicon helps maintain bone density and strength by facilitating the deposit of calcium and minerals into bone tissue.
    Joints: Silicon is vital for articular cartilage development and the integrity of joints and ligaments.
    Cardiovascular health: Silicon is essential for the strength and integrity of the tunica intima, the inner lining of arterial tissue.
    Nails: Silicon helps nails grow faster and harder.
    Hair: Silicon helps hair grow thicker and stronger.

Diseases that may be positively affected by silicon supplementation are:

  1. Osteoporosis: Silicon has been shown to increase the bone density of the femur (the bone from the hip to the knee), Eisinger and Clairet (1993) Magnesium Research, 6,247-249.
  2. Cardiovascular Disease: Studies in rabbits have shown regression of atheroma lesions after silicon supplementation, Loeper et al (1979) Atherosclerosis, 33,397-408.
  3. Alzheimer Disease: Silicon protects the brain from aluminum toxicity, which has been associated with Alzheimer's Disease, Carlisle and Curran (1987) Alzheimer Disease and Associated Disorders, 1, 83-89.

    A Superlative Silicon Product

    Jarrow Formulas' BioSil is a 2% silicon solution in the form of stabilized Orthosilicic Acid. Jarrow's patented technology has triumphed over silicon's absorption problems. Because BioSil is a high silicon concentrate, introducing BioSil into the stomach increases the Orthosilicic Acid concentration by a factor of 20,000. When calves had their dietary silicon intake increased by 5% with BioSil, their silicon blood levels increased 70% compared to control animals. The study also showed a 12% higher collagen concentration in the skin of the BioSil-supplemented animals compared to the control animals. This increase in collagen formation has important implications for bones and joints since collagen is the major fibrous protein in these tissue. BioSil is the only silicon product with scientific proof of absorbability and effectiveness.

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