Healthy hair. Radiant skin. Strong teeth, nails and bones. One thing they have in common is that everyone wants them. Another thing they share is they all need an important mineral: silica. Silica is so important to hair, teeth, bones, and nail health that we call it a mineral makeover. But before you grab the first bottle you see, be forewarned that not all silica is equal.
Silica comes in different forms. Silicon Dioxide is the form of silica found in glass, rocks and sand and is difficult for our bodies to digest and utilize. On the other hand, orthosilicic acid is the water-soluble form of silica found in plants. This is the form best absorbed by our bodies to create connective tissue, as well as the ever-coveted healthy hair and nails, and strong bones.
How do we make Florasil®?
There’s a reason we choose the spring horsetail plant to make Florasil®. Spring horsetail is one of the best plant sources of orthosilicic acid, the water-soluble form. We extract this orthosilicic acid from the horsetail plant using our gentle hot water process over several hours. This process removes impurities like thiaminase (an enzyme in raw horsetail that can deplete the body of thiamine, or vitamin B1), while keeping the important trace minerals that aid absorption.
This extraction method was developed by the late Professor Louis Kervran, a French researcher and scientist. He was quoted as saying: “The chemistry of the horsetail is one of the most complex and richest to be found in the plant world, because of its close symbiosis with the mineral world, and the alchemy that links plant and mineral.” Only water-soluble silica, orthosilicic acid, is extracted by this method and being sourced from a plant matrix, flavonoids and complex sugars are also present that aid absorption of the entire Florasil® mineral extract.
Why do we need silica?
Perhaps you know someone older whose skin is “just perfect.” It’s probably because their collagen levels are high. Collagen is the binding element that literally holds your body together; however, as we age, it deteriorates and loses elasticity. The result? Loose skin, thinning hair and brittle nails. Plentiful collagen stores give our skin that youthful glow and the elasticity to help prevent wrinkles. Silica also helps produce strong, flexible, healthy nails and strengthens connective tissue in the scalp to promote healthy hair.
Silica is one of the main building blocks for collagen. Silicon is a constituent of the enzyme prolylhydrolase, which helps the body produce collagen and glycosaminoglycans (GAGs). In addition, silicon is directly found in protein complexes that include GAGs. GAGs are polysaccharides that attract water, sugar, and protein to make connective tissue, cartilage, tendons, and to lubricate joints as synovial fluid. These substances are essential building blocks of life for healthy bone, nails, hair, and skin.
A number of scientific studies have shown that silica plays a crucial role in collagen synthesis and bone density. One UK study of 2847 people found a positive connection between silicon and increased bone density. Silica (or silicon) intake was correlated with a 9.6% increase in bone mineral density at hip sites in premenopausal women and a 4.3% increase for men. The average daily intake in these studies was approximately 25 mg per day.1
Silica and Silicon – what’s the difference?
Silicon is a mineral, while silica is a combination of silicon and oxygen. The terms are often used interchangeably because your body gets silicon from silica. In order to ensure you get enough to reap the health benefits, each Florasil® capsule is standardized and contains 10 mg of silica and 4.7 mg of silicon, as well as other trace minerals and bioflavonoids from the whole plant that aid silica absorption. Some of the other minerals that are extracted from the spring horsetail include calcium, magnesium, potassium, manganese and boron.
Is Florasil® right for me?
While silica is found in some fruits, vegetable and whole grains, many people in North America fail to eat enough healthy foods that supply the silica our bodies need. Beer contains the highest amount of dietary silica, but we aren’t recommending you consume cases of it to get your daily dose! We have a solution, with a whole lot less calories. Florasil® is a convenient way to increase your silica intake with a standardized, plant-sourced supplement that’s popular worldwide. Remember to also take it with food and this will ensure it is well-digested and well-absorbed for the ultimate plant-based mineral makeover!
- Jugdaohsingh R, Tucker KL, Qiao N, et al. Dietary silicon intake is positively associated with bone mineral density in men and premenopausal women of the Framingham Offspring cohort. J Bone Miner Res. 2004;19:297–307.