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Zeolite

In recent times I have become aware that zeolite is being marketed as a cure all (panacea), I would like to warn my readers to be very careful when you see a panacea being offered to you. When a panacea is being offered then it is important to brush off your critical thinking skills and get to work on the matter.

While zeolite has some useful properties it is sadly not a universal fix for all ills, my own view is that healthy living is rarely achieved through a quick fix. It is not possible to abuse your body with lots of junk food, alcohol, tobacco, late nights etc and then fix yourself with a pill or a fancy vitamin supplement. A far more effective route to good health is to abstain from tobacco / drugs, eat a sensible diet, limit your alcohol intake to a sensible level and take care to have a healthy “sleep life”.

While it might not be so exciting this idea of a healthy lifestyle where you treat your body with respect is much more likely to work for you than defiling your body and then expecting to be able to fix everything by swallowing a handful of pills.

Now lets think about zeolite, it is a bit of a wonder material but it is not all powerful, the way that zeolite works is that it has a negatively charged cage made of oxygen, aluminium and silicon atoms. The cage has many nanoscale holes it it. It can be thought of as being like a mini version of a swiss cheese. The negative charge of the cage is balanced by positively charged ions such as sodium ions. The way that the zeolite works is to exchange the sodium ions for other ions, in this way it can be used to remove calcium, strontium and cesium from aqueous solutions and release sodium ions at the same time.

So while the zeolite can capture positively charged species such as strontium, it can not capture negatively charged species such as PFOS (perfluorooctane sulfonate), instead if something such as PFOS needs to be removed from a human then a cationic polymer such as cholestyramine (cross linked polystyrene bearing tetraalkyl ammonium salt groups).

Recently I was asked which was better, zeolite or prussian blue. While both of these substances can be used absorb cesium. I considered the question at great length and I have come to the view that for humans that have been contaminated with cesium that prussian blue would be better as it is more selective. While zeolite can absorb calcium (an important mineral required for healthy life) the prussian blue only absorbs cesium, thallium and rubidium. Neither cesium, thallium or rubidium are required for healthy life.

If you want to read about prussian blue then I would suggest you look at the following links

http://www.bt.cdc.gov/radiation/prussianblue.asp

http://www.fda.gov/Drugs/EmergencyPreparedness/BioterrorismandDrugPreparedness/ucm130337.htm

http://www.bt.cdc.gov/radiation/pdf/prussian-blue.pdf

http://orise.orau.gov/files/reacts/Radiogardase-package-insert.pdf

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