What is borax?
Borax (sodium tetraborate hexahydrate or sodium borate) is a naturally-occurring mineral composed of sodium, boron, oxygen and water. It has been used as a remedy for over 4000 years. It is found in large quantities in the Western United States, in Mediterranean countries, Kazakhstan, and the Tibet region of China. Turkey is one of the largest commercial producers of borates.
Most people only get between 1.7 and 7 mg of boron per day, mainly from fruits, nuts, legumes and vegetables. It is likely that this level represents a severe deficiency, with the deficiency being worse for people living in those areas where there is little or no boron in the soil. Chemical fertilisers inhibit the extraction of boron from the soil, so conventionally-grown fruit and vegetables are low in boron. In contrast, an organic apple grown in boron-rich soils may have 20 mg of boron. The traditional French diet contains about 36 mg of boron per day, and most other traditional diets using naturally-grown (no chemical fertiliser) fruits and vegetables would deliver a similar amount of boron.
Borax's healing and preventative properties
Borax is a potent and effective remedy that deserves to be widely used, and should be in every home. It is so cheap and effective that pharmaceutical companies have done their utmost to discredit it. They have managed to get it banned in Europe and America. However in China, Japan, Turkey and Russia, for example, it is widely acknowledged and used. In those countries, pharmaceutical companies find it much harder to lobby (bribe, threaten and lie to) lawmakers and regulatory agencies.
- Protect's you from Fluorides. Borax protects against the accumulation of fluorides in the body; is effective as an antidote in fluoride toxicity; and can remove fluorides from the body. (1,2,3,4,5)
- Anti-microbial. Borax is toxic to insects, parasites, protozoa and bacteria.
- Fungicide. Effective against moulds and fungi, internally and externally.
- Hormone normaliser. Stimulates the production of hormones.
- As an Immune system enhancer.
- Reduction and control of inflammation.
- Aphrodisiac for men and women. See low libido.
- Toxin removal. Powerful chelator of heavy metals. (8)
- Stabiliser of calcium, copper and magnesium levels, inhibits calcification.
- Improves attention, both short and long term memory, perception, hand-eye coordination, and manual dexterity.
Borax as a remedy
Borax has successfully been used as a remedy for a variety of ailments. (7, 9, 10) It is a popular remedy at Grow Youthful. You can use it for both prevention and treatment.
- Rheumatoid arthritis. This is and inflammatory autoimmune disease whereby the body attacks its own joints, causing degeneration and deformity. It is more common in women, and can occur at any age. Often it develops into osteo arthritis. Work by Prof Roger Wyburn-Mason identified an amoeba in the joint as the cause in certain susceptible people. Boron is an effective control and cure.
- Osteo arthritis is a wearing away of the joints, particularly those that have been subject to trauma, infection or over-use when injured. It is more common in men. The cartilage or tough fibrous matter around the joint wears away and the bones rub against each other, causing pain and and further permanent damage to the joint.
- Osteoporosis (decalcification of the bones) or osteopenia.
- Other bone and connective tissue diseases such as Dupuytren's disease.
- Blood lipid disorders (hypertension (high blood pressure), arterial diseases).
- Cancer. (6)
- Swollen gums or loose teeth (pyorrhoea). This is a bit like arthritis of the teeth and gums.
- Spondylitis (arthritis of the spine with inflammation in the joints). Calcium is lost from the spinal vertebrae, leading to fusion and disc degeneration. Spondylitis responds to mineral treatments, particularly boron.
- Gout. Boron is an effective remedy.
How to use borax
In some countries such as Australia, New Zealand and the USA, you can buy borax in the laundry and cleaning section of your supermarket. Brand Names: Boraxo (USA, Mexico), Hovex (Australia). I have heard that 20 Mule Team (USA) is now scented - if it has an added smell, it is obviously not pure. You can also buy boron tablets online.
You may be concerned about the warnings on borax containers and some of what you read on the internet. However, borax's toxicity is less than that of sodium chloride (salt).
Borax is absorbed through the skin and mucous membranes. It is not a good idea to bathe in it unless a measured, small quantity is added to the bath, because large quantities can readily be taken up through your skin in a strong solution.
How to take Borax internally
Take 10 mg of boron per day to use it as a remedy / therapy for the above ailments.
An ongoing maintenance dose of 3 to 6 mg may be used for general good health and the prevention of ailments, especially if you live in an area where the soil is boron-deficient.
To get a dose of 7 mg per day, dissolve one level teaspoon of borax in one quart/litre of water to make a concentrated solution. Take a teaspoonful of this concentrate twice daily with meals.
Borax contains about 11% boron by weight.
When you consume borax it seems to work synergistically with magnesium, so keep your magnesium intake up whilst taking borax. See Magnesium.
How to use Borax externally
Saturate water with borax crystals (ie keep adding them to water until no more dissolve). Apply the borax solution to the problem areas on the skin, and surrounding hair.
Some people have found this borax remedy is more effective by adding 1% hydrogen peroxide to the above solution.
Apply the solution to the skin, and leave it on without rinsing. It tends to cause drying, so you may want to add aloe vera, jojoba oil or lavender oil later.
Interestingly, dog mange is caused by demodex mites and the effective treatment is the above 1% hydrogen peroxide and borax saturated solution applied topically.
We only need very small quantities of boron for good health and to prevent diseases such as arthritis. In large quantities it has adverse effects, the same as any other compound.
Borax has very low toxicity. Borax's LD50 (median lethal dose) score is 2.66 g/kg in rats. (11) This is the same toxicity as boric acid.
To put it in perspective, table salt is only slightly less toxic with an LD50 of 3.75 g/kg in rats according to the Merck Index!
It is likely that toxicity symptoms will develop only after taking several grams (thousand mg) per day for several months. Signs of boron toxicity are diarrhoea, lethargy, nausea and vomiting. Eventually, also dermatitis. Excess boron can worsen or trigger conditions like ADHD, allergies, asthma, autism, cystic fibrosis, dyslexia, liver and oesophageal cancer. Boron tends to increase the levels of calcium and oestrogen, and lower blood glucose, and levels of vitamin B6 and zinc. Boron's antidote is vitamin B2.
1. Elsair J, Merad R, Denine R, Reggabi M, Alamir B, Benali S, Azzouz M, Khelfat K.
Boron as a preventive antidote in acute and subacute fluoride intoxication in rabbits: its action on fluoride and
Fluoride 13:129-138 (1980).
2. Elsair J, Merad R, Denine R, Reggabi M, Benali S, Azzouz M, Khelfat K, Tabet Aoul M. Boron as an antidote in acute fluoride intoxication in rabbits: its action on the fluoride and calcium-phosphorus metabolism. Fluoride 13:30-38 (1980).
3. Elsair J, Merad R, Denine R, Azzouz M, Khelfat K, Hamrour M, Alamir B, Benali S, Reggabi M. Boron as antidote to fluoride: effect on bones and claws in subacute intoxication of rabbits. Fluoride 14:21-29 (1981).
4. Elsair J, Merad R, Denine R, Reggabi M, Benali S, Hamrour HM, Azzouz M, Khalfat K, Tabet Aoul M, Nauer J. Action of boron upon fluorosis: An experimental study. Fluoride 15:75-78 (1982).
5. Franke J, Runge H, Bech R, Wiedner W, Kramer W, Kochmann W, Hennig A, Ludke H, Seffner W, Teubner W, Franke M, Moritz W, Barthold L, Geinitz D. Boron as an antidote to fluorosis? Part I. Studies on the skeletal system. Fluoride 18: 187-197 (1985).
6. Hall, Iris et al. Ongoing research on boranes and other borax compounds, Division of medical chemistry, University of North Carolina.
7. Newnham, Rex. Away with Arthritis. 2nd edition printed 1993.
8. Turkez H., Geyikoglu F., Tatar A., Keles M.S., Kaplan I. The effects of some boron compounds against heavy metal toxicity in human blood. Exp Toxicol Pathol. 2012 Jan;64(1-2):93-101. Epub 2010 Jul 20. Article
9. Mary Duncan. Boron phenols and health : clues to the mysteries of ADD - Alzheimer's - Asthma. Carabooda, W.A. : Alkimos Australia, 1995.
10. Newnham R. E. Essentiality of boron for healthy bones and joints. Environ Health Perspect. 1994;102 Suppl 7:83-85.
11. Borax - toxicity, ecological toxicity and regulatory information. Retrieved 17 February 2012. Article