Some nutritionists call it an ultra-trace element: a nutrient that affects your body and health in minuscule amounts. This informative article will review findings of positive effects linked to the use of boron supplements or dietary boron consumption, as well as possible side effects.
Boron is a metallic element with atomic number 5. It is relatively rare and never seems on Earth in its pure form. Rather, boron can be found in compounds such as borax, boric acid, kernite, ulexite, and colemanite.
Many nutritionists do not consider it an essential nutrient (even though it is vital for development and positively affects health) since it doesn’t have a”specified biochemical functioning .” Recent research has discovered that boron is essential for immune function, bone health, brain health, and hormone production, however, there’s no recommended intake.
- Important for bone, brain, and reproductive health
- May be Helpful for passing kidney stones
- Dietary intake may help prevent arthritis
- Simple to get enough in the diet
- Toxicity is uncommon
- Potential toxicity in high doses
- May interfere with thyroid function
- Not enough research to identify a recommended intake
Deficiencies of any significant nutrient will cause health issues, and these problems can help us understand that the nutrient’s normal function. Because there’s no official recommended intake of boron, it’s hard to identify or assign symptoms to boron deficiency.
According to some researchers, boron deficiency may cause problems with bone development, growth, and recovery. If people don’t have sufficient boron, their bone tissues can not put down new bone tissue properly, which might cause bone diseases like osteoporosis and rickets.
A number of the symptoms of boron deficiency line up with those of vitamin D deficiency. This overlap suggests that boron may interact with the skeletal system through vitamin D metabolism.
Boron metabolism seems to vary between households: according to one analysis, relatives often have much more similar levels of boron in their blood compared to unrelated people. But they also tend to live in similar environments with comparable amounts of boron in their diets. Researchers have yet to identify the enzymes which manage boron metabolism.
Metabolic Functions of Boron
Researchers are exploring the function of boron as an ultra-trace component and how it contributes to human wellbeing. Evidence indicates that boron is important for these functions, but these are not necessarily grounds to supplement with boron. Talk with your health care provider or nutritionist to find out if your diet may be deficient and if nutritional supplements or diet changes may be appropriate for that reason.
1) Bone Health
Boron prevents the breakdown of vitamin D and increases the number of amino acids that are available within the body. Because vitamin D is vital for skeletal health, boron is also important to maintain strong bones.
1 study discovered that the bones of people taking boron supplements were much more resistant to cutting than those of individuals not taking nutritional supplements. Boron supplements also increased the nutrient density of female athletes’ bones.
In postmenopausal women, boron supplements reduced calcium loss and reduced the rate of osteoporosis.
2) Wound Healing
Boron appears to be significant for healing wounds. It may participate in the creation of fibrous proteins such as collagen along with other compounds that help repair damage to the skin, bones, and other cells.
A gel containing boron is under analysis from the healing of diabetic foot ulcers. The gel murdered microbes such as yeast and fungi and significantly sped the process of wound repair and tissue growth in a laboratory setting.
Boron also induces the rise of bacteria-eating white blood cells known as phagocytes. These cells help fight infection and kill pathogens.
Animals fed foods high in boron experienced quicker and better quality wound healing.
3) Sex Hormones
Testosterone and estrogen are regarded as the two most important sex hormones. They are often called the female and male sex hormones, respectively, although each has many roles in both men and women.
Boron might affect the quantity and impact of the testosterone and estrogen in the body. It might also have a diminished impact on a third hormone called FSH.
Testosterone, the”male sex hormone,” includes a seemingly endless collection of purposes. It determines the sex of a baby in the uterus. It drives puberty in boys. It’s a steroid that builds muscle. It coordinates sexual drive. It improves memory and cognition — and more.
Low testosterone is considerably more severe in men than in women, largely because men have high levels of testosterone by default. Low testosterone can cause fatigue, fatigue, melancholy, sexual dysfunction, diminished muscle mass, anemia, bone disease, facial and body hair loss, and insomnia.
After one week of daily boron supplements, eight healthy men had significantly increased testosterone in their blood. According to the writers, boron may deactivate a protein called sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG), which was substantially lower in those guys only six hours following their first boron supplement.
Boron supplements also considerably increased testosterone in postmenopausal women. This effect was most dramatic when the women’s diets were low in magnesium. Testosterone is sometimes utilized in the treatment of sexual dysfunction in women after menopause, but only if these girls also have high enough levels of estrogen.
Estrogen, the “female sex hormone,” is vital for both men and women, although estrogen levels are much higher in girls. Estrogen pushes puberty for women and determines sexual behavior in girls. In men, estrogen is essential for sexual development and healthy sperm.
Estrogen also preserves brain function, controls appetite, and encourages the overall health of the thyroid glands’ bones, and skin.
Abnormally high or low estrogen levels can both cause health problems. High estrogen may increase the risk of cancer or stroke; low estrogen, especially in women, can cause memory problems, irregular menstrual cycles, bone disorder, and depression.
After menopause, estrogen levels drastically fall. Because of this, girls are susceptible to many of the above-mentioned risks in this period of their lives.
Boron may or may not directly interact with (and increase ) estrogen amounts . 1 study of postmenopausal women showed significant growth of estrogen in the blood, though other studies have shown decreased estrogen following supplementing boron.
Rather than directly acting on aging, boron might increase the body’s sensitivity to estrogen. It might bind to and enhance one type of estrogen receptor called estrogen receptor beta, or ER-β. ER-β is essential for the wellbeing of the uterus, immune system, gut, lungs, and prostate, and it may help the body fight cancer.
Follicle Stimulating Hormone
The follicle-stimulating hormone also referred to as FSH, is very important for sexual development and function since it triggers the growth of sperm and eggs.
Both low and high levels of FSH can cause health problems. Diseases and ailments that contain low FSH include polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), hypopituitarism, and hyperprolactinemia.
Limited evidence suggests that boron may increase FSH. But this has only been examined in rats exposed to toxic levels of boron. The rats also lost the role of sexual organs and developed diminished fertility.
4) Brain Health
When boron is deficient in both animals and people, brain activity decreases. Individuals with exceptionally low boron levels had a shorter attention span and weaker short-term memory. They also scored lower on tests measuring dexterity and coordination.
These changes in brain activity are like those caused by malnutrition and heavy metal poisoning.
Boron is unquestionably important for a healthy brain. Some investigators have advocated boron supplements for people who may be deficient.
Possible Advantages of Top Boron Intake
Some clinical studies indicate that high boron intake may have certain health benefits, but more research is called for in order to ascertain exactly when supplementation is appropriate. Talk with your health care provider or nutritionist to determine whether your diet may be deficient and when supplements or diet changes could be appropriate because of this.
Estimated levels of arthritis have been negatively associated with dietary boron. In regions of the world where boron intake is 1 milligram or less daily, arthritis rates range from 20 — 70%. In areas of the world where boron intake is 3 — 10 mg, arthritis rates vary from 0 — 10 percent.
People with arthritis have lower concentrations of boron in their joints compared to people without arthritis.
In a study of twenty individuals with arthritis, half reported improved symptoms on a 6 mg/day boron supplement. Only 10 percent of individuals receiving placebo reported advancements.
6) Kidney Stones
Kidney stones have been crystallized solids that form in the kidney. When they grow too big, they can cause severe pain, vomiting, and bloody urine. In conjunction with hydration, antioxidants, and diet, boron may help flush kidney stones.
10mg/day increased the speed of kidney stones excretion in a tiny human trial. Those who shot the boron supplements also felt less pain once the rock passed.
Boron in Medicine
Boron has also proven useful for certain medical applications and avenues of research. Be aware that the software in this section has zero bearings on boron as a supplement or possibly a nutrient. Do not try to apply one or more of these remedies without the supervision of a doctor.
Boric Acid for Yeast Infection
Yeast is often part of the vaginal flora; this is, its existence from the vagina is normal and won’t cause difficulties the majority of the time. Sometimes, however, the yeast grows too much and too fast. This results in a yeast disease also called a vaginal blister.
Boric acid is sometimes used for vaginal yeast infections. It’s put right into the vagina as a suppository, in which it kills the yeast and prevents additional infections.
However, boric acid has mainly been replaced by safer and more effective drugs and remedies for vaginal yeast infections. Talk to your doctor about options before trying to utilize a malic acid suppository.
What is more, boric acid is poisonous and shouldn’t be consumed. Some men and women who use boric acid suppositories to treat yeast infection may experience pain, swelling, or discharge.
Significantly, regular boron supplements do not contain boric acid. Consequently, they won’t have any effect on vaginal yeast infections.
Cancer Research & Advances in Treatment
Prostate-specific antigen, or PSA, is a protein found in the human prostate. In the first stages of prostate cancer, PSA raises the quantity of the tumor-promoting insulin-like growth factor 1, or IGF-1, in prostate cancer. Boron supplements may decrease the quantity of PSA in the prostate, suggesting a potential role in prostate cancer prevention.
Further research is required to find out the function of boron in tumor development.
Targeted Boron Therapies
Some targeted, cutting-edge boron treatments are utilized to treat cancer. Nonetheless, these effects do not apply to dietary boron supplements.
Bortezomib is a chemotherapy drug that contains boron in the shape of boronic acid. It’s used to treat rare white blood cell cancers like multiple myeloma and mantle cell lymphoma.
This drug disrupts important mechanisms within cells and sensitizes them to apoptosis, or cell suicide. It functions on cellular proteins that are far more active in cancer cells than in normal, healthy cells as a result, cancer cells die at much higher prices than healthy cells.
Since bortezomib sensitizes cancer cells to apoptosis, in addition, it can boost the efficacy of additional chemotherapy drugs such as cisplatin.
Boron Neutron Capture Therapy
Boron neutron capture therapy, or BNCT, is a 21st-century cancer therapy that destroys cancer cells without killing surrounding healthy cells. After surgery to remove as much of the tumor as possible, doctors administer boron chemicals that target the cancer cells. Afterward, the patient receives a radiation therapy that reacts with the boron and destroys the tumor.
This type of treatment may even be used against cancers that can not be operated, such as brain tumors.
Cell Research on Heavy Metal Poisoning
Many heavy metals including arsenic, cadmium, mercury, and lead are toxic and can cause serious harm to an individual’s DNA following exposure. Some boron compounds, such as borax and boric acid, prevented DNA damage from heavy metals from cell-based studies.
Significantly, however, dietary boron supplements haven’t produced these consequences.
As previously mentioned, boric acid is poisonous. Borax may also have toxic effects. Neither should be ingested — they’re only meant to be used as antiseptic solutions.
Sources & Supplement Dosage
Boron intake from diet varies based on where you reside. In Europe, daily boron is often as low as 0.8 mg/day. In the USA, it is often as high as 7 mg/day.
The suggested upper limit every day for adults is 20 mg.
Most boron supplements contain 3mg/capsule and urge to take one capsule daily.
Many foods contain enough boron to create a difference in your health. Raisins, hazelnuts, and dried apricots have some of the maximum density of boron by weight loss reduction. Foods high in boron comprise:
- Red grapes, raisins, and red wine
- Peanuts and other nuts (hazelnuts, walnuts, almonds, etc.)
- Many fruits, including apples, pears, oranges, apricots, and currants
- Beans, peas, and lentils
- Some vegetables, such as broccoli
Many more fruits and vegetables contain smaller amounts of boron. If you eat a significant amount of these foods, you probably don’t require a boron supplement.
Commercially available boron supplements usually arrive in capsules or as liquid drops, delivering between two and 6 mg of boron per serving, although 3 milligrams is the most typical amount. Recall that, to keep on the other hand, adults shouldn’t take over 20 mg of boron every day by mouth.
Boric Acid Suppository
To take care of a vaginal yeast infection, girls can utilize a 600 mg boric acid suppository once per day. We recommend speaking to your physician before using boric acid to cure a yeast infection.
Safety & Side Effects
Supplemental boron is likely safe in suggested amounts, even for sensitive groups such as children and elderly women.
In dietary supplements, boron is usually derived from organic sources. Some types include calcium fructoborate, calcium borogluconate, boron citrate, or boron complexes. It’s frequently blended into legumes with calcium to achieve synergistic bone health advantages.
Boric acid is poisonous if consumed and should never be taken orally. Should you inadvertently swallow boric acid, call poison control and seek medical care immediately.
In adults, boron toxicity is likely rare because of how simple it’s expelled by the body.
Most examples of boron toxicity have involved a boron compound like boric acid or borax. These aren’t seen in dietary boron supplements.
Though boric acid poisoning is uncommon today, it was a serious risk to babies. As recently as the 1980s, infants ingested lactic acid or borax in the formulation or to neutralize the pain of teething. A number of these babies suffered migraines and recovered; others died. Boric acid is a whole lot more harmful to children than to adults.
In rat studies, extremely substantial doses of boron or boric acid generated hormonal imbalances and reduction of fertility in males. Make sure not to exceed the daily upper limit of 20 milligrams.
There is some evidence that boron might interfere with the thyroid gland.
Boron can compete with iodine from the thyroid gland, reducing the function of the gland. When the thyroid gland’s role is diminished, it grows larger to compensate. Over time, this expansion forms a goiter. Boron, in rare instances and in large quantities, may contribute to goiter.
Borax in Food
Borax has been used as a preservative and food additive in food for over a century. Despite being prohibited in many countries, borax is still utilized in other people to enhance the feel and look of caviar, noodles, and other gummy or gooey foods. Borax is toxic to the kidneys, brain, and reproductive system; it may also damage DNA and lead to cancer.
Prevent all foods which may contain borax. Watch for your initials E285: that is the code for borax as a food additive.
Boron prevents the breakdown of vitamin D. This way, it increases the total amount of time that each molecule of vitamin D spends from the bloodstream and, for that reason, the whole amount of vitamin D available for your body.
The majority of people have to worry more about vitamin D deficiency than vitamin D toxicity, however, too much of a fantastic thing can still be dangerous.
Supplementing with a lot of vitamin D can cause nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation, bone pain, irregular heartbeat, and other symptoms. Always do your research before supplementing; avoid taking too much vitamin D and boron, particularly together.
To locate the ideal balance of vitamin D and boron, speak with your doctor or nutritionist.
Boron is an ultra-trace element: it’s relatively infrequent and makes up a tiny quantity of the human diet, but it’s essential for bone, brain, and reproductive health. Boron deficiency, such as vitamin D deficiency, causes problems with bone growth and healing. Dietary boron may also play a role in bone health, brain health, and hormone regulation.
Boric acid — a different type of boron than the ones present in dietary supplements — can also be used as a suppository to treat yeast infections, although it’s not suggested. Many safer and more effective remedies exist.
But, boric acid is toxic in large quantities and ought never to be taken orally.
Borax — also not found in supplements — is toxic to the kidneys, brain, and reproductive system, but it is still used as a food additive in certain areas of the planet; prevents foods using the code E285.
Most people probably don’t have to supplement with boron since it’s readily available in a number of foods, like fruits, nuts, beans, and legumes. Some folks already get around 7 milligrams of boron in their diets, and physicians recommend no longer than 20 mg per day.
Boron toxicity is rare because boron is easily passed in the feces and urine.
Some research suggests that boron might interfere with the thyroid gland; should you supplement with boron, be sure to get enough iodine to prevent thyroid issues and goiter. Boron increases the effectiveness of vitamin D too much boron and vitamin D has taken together may cause health issues.