Pseudoscience & Dangerous Effects of Colloidal Silver Oral Usage

In today’s Medium article I’ll address the false claim about the usage of colloidal silver for diet supplements to viral infections. The usage is normally tipped by quacks, dubious chiropractors and pseudoscientific practitioners of “natural medicine” & “homoeopathy”. So without further a do let’s get into the article.

Quack medicine

➡️ What is Colloidal silver?

According to a very good science article from NCCIH, colloidal silver is: “Colloidal silver consists of tiny silver particles in a liquid that is sometimes promoted on the Internet as a dietary supplement. However, evidence supporting health-related claims is lacking. In fact, colloidal silver can be dangerous to your health.” [1]

References: [1] https://www.nccih.nih.gov/health/colloidal-silver

➡️ The claims

There have been various claims that this product can boost your immune system, helps with diet, and tackles viral infections and other conditions/ailments [1].

In 1999 the FDA banned over-the-top counter sales of colloidal silver [2] and sales in general, as these products were declared unsafe for consumer use. They do not provide any benefits and they shouldn’t be pushed to consumers by those who peddle fake medicine, as it’s also highly illegal [3].

However, the only legal use of colloidal silver is ONLY for wound dressings, plasters or other assorted items such as these [4] (i.e. topical use [5]). Even then it’s use is widely debated.

Other claims include preventing medical conditions like diabetes, helping against cancer and more, but there is no evidence that supports this thesis [6].

References: [1] https://www.webmd.com/vitamins-and-supplements/colloidal-silver-safe
[2] https://www.govinfo.gov/content/pkg/FR-1999-08-17/html/99-21253.htm — Federal Register 64:44653–44658, 1999.
[3] https://www.nccih.nih.gov/health/colloidal-silver
[4] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6756674/
[5] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK361003/
[6] https://pubs.acs.org/doi/10.1021/acs.jmedchem.8b01439

➡️ Side effects and toxicity

Side effects of orally taking colloidal silver include the following:

Toxicity and other dangers:

References: [1] https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/11107524/
[2] https://www.nccih.nih.gov/health/colloidal-silver
[3] https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33437653/
[4] https://escholarship.org/uc/item/0832g6d3
[5] https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/8632503/
[6] https://cdn.mdedge.com/files/s3fs-public/Document/September-2017/021040009.pdf
[7] https://www.govinfo.gov/content/pkg/FR-1999-08-17/pdf/99-21253.pdf
[8] https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamadermatology/fullarticle/2214158
[9] https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/10558603/
[10] https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fmicb.2016.01831/full

➡️ Conclusion
Quite a simple and short conclusion. Don’t take colloidal silver orally, it’s banned for oral use by the FDA for a reason.

💥 Thanks for reading, Lawrence. Please consider a small contribution, in the form of a beer as all articles are created in my small amount of spare time: https://www.buymeacoffee.com/LawrenceRob

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Lawrence Robinson

Passionate about evidence-based scientific information and tackling falsehoods that thrive on social media.