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BENTONITE—Intestinal Wonder

C. Norman Shealy, M.D., Ph.D.


Recently a former patient reminded me of an earlier recommendation of bentonite to treat diarrhea. Although it is usually important to have a medical diagnosis of the cause and to treat appropriately a significant bout of diarrhea, often conventional medicine does not work. People often move—pardon the pun—to using Pepto Bismol  or lomodium, a narcotic. These have many “side effects” and just as often do not work.


Bentonite is a native, colloidal hydrated aluminum silicate. Fortunately it is NOT absorbed so it has no known toxicity; but of course too much can lead to constipation!


Bentonite is phenomenally effective and safe to treat:

Persistent diarrhea




Virus infections of the intestines, including intestinal flu

Travelers diarrhea, C. difficile, in conjunction with antibiotics or alone

Just general bowel detoxification


For diarrhea: start with one teaspoon in 8 oz of water and take up to one after each bowel movement, although I would not go beyond 4 or 5 teaspoons in a day. And do not take bentonite within an hour of taking a medication or supplement, as it may interfere with absorption.


I tend to think most people would do well to take a tablespoon once a day for a week, with lots of water, at least once or twice a year as part of a regular detox.


It is available as a powder at most health food stores


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