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Germanium is a natural trace element that has caused considerable controversy in the natural health world. Like many minerals and trace elements it comes in a number of different forms. The controversy surrounding Germanium is that in its “inorganic form” it is toxic and can cause any number of health issues, not the least of which is kidney damage. In the 1980’s research and production of Germanium was mostly coming from Japan and Russia. However, some unscrupulous producers were mixing the toxic inorganic form in with the organic causing not only health problems but an FDA crackdown on importing it that still is in place today. American production is more carefully monitored and the supplements produced here are considered safe.
Organic Germanium, known as Germanium sesquioxide is safe and widely regarded by the natural health circles as beneficial. However those benefits may also be a bit overblown by some sources. It has been credited for “miraculous” healings and even sited as the reason behind the mysterious healing in Lourdes, France since the 1800’s as the waters there have a high concentration of Germanium. There is research being done on Organic Germanium but most of it has been done in Japan with the Western countries only now studying it in the last few decades. What has been generally agreed upon is that Organic Germanium boosts the immune system response and as such has many health benefits. It is sited as aiding the body in producing natural killer cells and helping with the oxygenation of cells both of which are beneficial in fighting off bacteria and infections. It’s often used to treat AIDS, cancer and other degenerative diseases including arthritis and Lyme disease. As a general tonic it’s said to boost energy and rejuvenate the immune system as well as fight off free radicals that cause aging and decay in the cells.
Many plants that are used in healing contain Germanium such as garlic, ginseng, comfrey, Shitake Mushrooms and aloe. Germanium is found in the soil and absorbed by the plants. The typical dose for a Germanium supplement is between 0.1 and 4mg.