Written by Sarah Gingo & Jen Ankenbrandt
Fulvic Acid (FvA) is a naturally occurring component of soil organic matter and a primary constituent found in Shilajit that is complemented by a rich history of usage in ancient and modern medicine. Research today supports the notion that consuming it can result in numerous health benefits, including improved immune system response, healthy gastrointestinal functions, detoxification of heavy metals, prevention of cancer and Alzheimer’s disease, enhanced nutrient absorption, and relief from various chronic inflammatory diseases. Here we aim to share some of the most well-known properties of fulvic acid, plus a few examples of attention-grabbing data recently acknowledged in the scientific communities. We will also include some peer-reviewed articles linked near the bottom if you wish to continue your exploration on the subject. We highly recommend it!
Since about 600 BCE, fulvic acid in the naturally occurring form of Shilajit has been used in traditional Ayurvedic medicine in India as a remedy to treat a multitude of ailments. Scientific evidence now suggests Shilajit is powerfully anti-inflammatory and detoxifying; it protects cellular integrity, regulates blood sugar, supports liver health, improves brain function, increases fertility, relieves anxiety, and improves overall energy and vitality. Most authentic Shilajit varieties contains approximately 20% fulvic acid, so many scientists speculate that FvA is a key player in providing these numerous and broad reaching health benefits.
What is Fulvic Acid?
So, what is FvA and where does it come from? Fulvic acids are a class of complex natural organic molecules found in humus, which is the dark, carbon-rich portion of soil. Fulvic acid and humic acid are the two main classes of humic substances that can be extracted from humus, and both play important roles in recycling nutrients between soil and plants. All humic substances are the by-products of decomposing plants, animals and microbial lifeforms. As humic matter goes through the earth’s natural chemical and biological weathering processes, FvA is slowly created by millions of soil microbes. Interestingly, the compounds found within FvA will vary depending on a location since it’s directly influenced by the breakdown of specific living organisms found in a setting and the geography of the land. FvA is also naturally occurring within humified materials such as peat and weathered coal.
One of the main actions performed by FvA is that it becomes a delivery system to cells by supplying them with various essential nutrients and trace minerals. This aspect is crucial because the food that’s currently available for consumption is not a reliant resource for several vitamins and minerals. The nutrient levels in crop yields depend upon the bioavailability of elements within the soil. As time goes on, soil fertility continues to decline because most of the agricultural land is over-worked. In fact, many farmers choose to add humic and fulvic acids prior to crop production in order to improve the nutritional levels in the harvest.
Naturally Occurring Fulvic Acid vs. Synthetic Sources
The origin of humic substances is an important factor to consider when searching for a fulvic acid supplement or soil amendment. Often, when created synthetically, higher concentrations of toxic heavy-metals are detected and have been known to present issues to those who consume them. Naturally-occurring FvA is known for its capacity to neutralize and interact more favorably with metal ions, clays, proteins, vitamins and many other compounds found in soil. Synthetic varieties have dissimilar molecular structures and functional groups, which directly influences the accumulation and overall stability of heavy metals and any other toxic ions that coalesce. The body only needs a tiny fraction of heavy metals in order for all the systems to function properly, so we highly recommend consuming naturally-occurring FvA. In addition, one must be careful to consider the carrier of FvA, and the other foods that come in contact with it. Chlorine in tap water has been found to react with humic substances, creating carcinogenic and mutagenic compounds. This is why we always advise our clients to dilute Shilajit only in pure spring water, purified water, or other NON-Chlorinated liquids.
Fulvic Acid for Health and Vitality
In recent years, fulvic acid has gained a reputation as a supplement to help increase energy levels. The data supporting these claims are composed from scientific and experiential evidence. Overall, FvA seems to play an important role when it comes to cell rejuvenation and combating oxidative damage. Recent studies also show that testosterone production is another potentially strong benefit of FvA. Aside from these exceedingly supported claims, there are number of other exciting, suggested benefits linked to the consumption of the substance. Some of these include: Improving gut health by encouraging gut flora and healing adverse disorders of the digestive system; binding to and detoxifying out of the body heavy metals and toxic chemicals like Glyphosate and xenoestrogens; therapeutic effects on patients with hyperglycemia or diabetes sufferers; improved cognitive function through the nootropic and anxiolytic functions, some of which aid in memory consolidation and learning actions within the brain.
Humans (and animals) have been using fulvic acid for centuries as a supplement to aide in longevity, rejuvenation, and to help with many general symptoms of aging. Clinical studies have yielded evidence in support of fulvic acid’s benefits, and natural sources have been shown to be the safest and most bio-compatible option for supplementation. Our natural Wild American Shilajit is 22% fulvic acid, providing a pure and potent source for this rejuvenating compound.
Sources/Links to articles:
Carrasco-Gallardo, C., Guzmán, L., & Maccioni, R. B. (2012). Shilajit: A Natural Phytocomplex with Potential Procognitive Activity. International Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, 2012. https://doi.org/10.1155/2012/674142
Winkler, J., & Ghosh, S. (2018). Therapeutic Potential of Fulvic Acid in Chronic Inflammatory Diseases and Diabetes [Research article]. https://doi.org/10.1155/2018/5391014
Gandy, J. J., Snyman, J. R., & van Rensburg, C. E. (2011). Randomized, parallel-group, double-blind, controlled study to evaluate the efficacy and safety of carbohydrate-derived fulvic acid in topical treatment of eczema. Clinical, Cosmetic and Investigational Dermatology, 4, 145–148. https://doi.org/10.2147/CCID.S23110
Datta, A., Sanyal, S. K., & Saha, S. (2001). A study on natural and synthetic humic acids and their complexing ability towards cadmium. Plant and Soil, 235(1), 115–125. https://doi.org/10.1023/A:1011842019753
Rodríguez, N. C., Urrutia, E. C., Gertrudis, B. H., Pedraza, J., & Mejía, G. B. (2011). Antioxidant activity of fulvic acid: A living matter-derived bioactive compound. 6.
Kopfler, F., H. Ringhand, W. Coleman, AND J. Meier. REACTIONS OF CHLORINE IN DRINKING WATER, WITH HUMIC ACIDS AND 'IN VIVO'. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, D.C., EPA/600/D-84/196 (NTIS PB85160737). https://cfpub.epa.gov/si/si_public_record_Report.cfm?Lab=NHEERL&dirEntryId=50688