A mineral compound present in the body and in the environment, organic silicon has health benefits. Where to find it? What is the benefit of organic silicon supplementation? Explanations from Véronique Liesse, dietitian-nutritionist.
To preserve bone stock or prevent cartilage degeneration, supplementation with organic silicon can be beneficial for your health. Sold in pharmacies and organic stores, this product can be presented in different packaging.
A trace element present in the body and in the environment
Present in the environment (notably in rock and sand) and in the body, silicon (Si) can take different forms. “It is a trace element that can be found in the form of crystallized mineral silicon, colloidal silicon or even organic silicon. It can be combined with other substances and take various forms. underlines Véronique Liesse, dietician-nutritionist in Monaco, author of numerous works including “special immunity diet”, editions Leduc, 2020.
On the plate, we find silicon in many foods such as wholemeal bread, green beans, beer, dates, oats, horsetail, nettle, blackcurrant or even in algae. “It is also found in certain carbonated waters”adds Véronique Liesse.
In the body, silicon plays a structural role. “Silicon is found in the skin, hair, nails, bones and all connective tissues.“, continues the nutritionist. Although it is present throughout the body, it is still difficult to know precisely its role and its importance for health, as the studies on it are thin and sometimes controversial. Moreover, like these Studies often involve other contributions (vitamin D, manganese, magnesium, horsetail, etc.), it is difficult to know precisely the sole role and benefits of silicon on health.
A role in the production of collagen
Against pain, to improve collagen production, the supposed health effects of silicon are numerous. Many laboratories offer supplementation products, although the effectiveness of these intakes has not been proven by scientific studies. Before using a supplement, it is best to talk to your doctor and seek advice from your pharmacist.
Beneficial for skin, nails and hair
Silicon is used in the manufacture of bones, tendons, ligaments, cartilage, skin, hair, nails and tooth enamel. Although this has not been precisely demonstrated in specific studies, silicon would play a role in calcium fixation. It would also stimulate the production of keratin, thus playing a role in hair health. “To make collagen, calcium needs silicon by combining with vitamin C.explains Véronique Liesse.
An asset for immunity
Furthermore, silicon plays a role in the acid-base balance of the body, by alkalizing it. “It could therefore indirectly strengthen immunity.adds Véronique Liesse.
Good for muscles and joints
Combined with calcium and vitamin D, organic silicon plays a preventive role in sarcopenia, by protecting bone and muscle. This trace element would also play a preventive role in cartilage degeneration. This is why its benefits are often cited for bones, joints and therefore, by extension, for common joint pathologies such as osteoarthritis and osteoporosis. “After 70 years, it seems that the organization has lost 80% of its silicon capital. recalls Véronique Liesse. As such, supplementation could improve joint comfort.
Improving your mobility with age
After a certain age, supplementation could therefore prove useful to prevent or compensate for silicon loss. However, remember that no study to date has proven the benefits of organic silicon supplementation on joint and bone health or other indications.
Mineral silicon or organic silicon
Inorganic silicon (silica) should not be confused with organic silicon. In fact, this corresponds to silicon to which carbon atoms and hydrogen have been added. Mineral silicon cannot be assimilated by humans. Only organic silicon can therefore be consumed by humans.
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Capsule or bottle? Choose silicon in liquid form
Among the different dosage forms available (tablets, capsules, gel, oral solution), it is preferable to consume organic silicon in liquid form, in order to promote its intestinal absorption. “Considering that we absorb half of what we consume, we can estimate that a daily consumption of 30 mg per day is safe,” summarizes the nutritionist. Although the toxicity of silicon has not been demonstrated, excessive consumption over a long period of time (several years) can nevertheless promote the formation of kidney or urinary stones. As a precaution, silicon supplementation in people suffering from kidney failure should therefore be avoided.
As is the case with all food supplements, ask your doctor or pharmacist for advice.