Choosing a Binder:
There is a true art to the selection of the right binder for the right toxin. It can vary based on the degree of stored toxins an individual has as well as what phase of healing an individual is working through. As folks work through deeper levels of healing, the body will release different toxins.
In the charts and information below, I have made my best effort to summarize what has been described in the available research about binders:
Ok guys, bear with me, there’s a lot of information to follow. If you need to stop around and digest the information, I totally get it. The chart will be your reference to go back to later! Let’s look at each binder individually:
This is a “broad spectrum” binder which binds indiscriminately the good and bad stuff: vitamins and medications as well as mycotoxins and biotoxins and inflammatory molecules. Charcoal filters are used in water filters like Brita because of this function of binding a wide variety of things. (Charcoal filters are unable to remove fluoride, however). In medical practice, this type of binder is found in acute intoxication treatment algorithms. I have personally used it in the emergency room for drug and alcohol overdose situations.
When we consider its application in healthy detoxification, activated charcoal is very useful in acute die-off situations which some folks will encounter when trying to heal from chronic infections such as lyme, ebv, candida, ect.
Downside: This should not be used long-term because chronic use can contribute to nutrient and mineral deficiency and constipation.It is not the best binder for heavy metals and cannot contribute energy (electrons) to the body for healing.
Here are a few of my favorite brands to use:
Quicksilver Ultrabinder* (Amazon) – blend with other binders
This group of clays derives its name from one of the original sources, Fort Benton, Montana. You may also see montmorillonite clay mentioned synonymously when reading about bentonite clay, because they are essentially chemically the same, except that montmorillonite clay derives its name from the location of its original mining location- Montmorillon, France. It has been mined there since the 1800’s. I’ll share more factoids about clay in later blogs, so for now..
Bentonite clay shines in its usefulness for absorbing mycotoxins, such as aflatoxin, that is found in certain foods like peanuts and certain grains. Mycotoxins are also released when killing mold. One human study found that five days of taking bentonite clay reduced aflatoxin markers by 55%.
Bentonite clay can also bind certain herbicides and pesticides as well as the dangerous cyanotoxins produced by harmful algea bloom which is found increasingly in polluted lakes and ponds.
Bentonite clay also has intrinsic broad spectrum anti-bacterial properties and a healing effect on the GI tract.
Downside: while it’s a great binder for aflatoxin (the mold in food), it’s not that great for the disastrous ochratoxin A (found in black mold). Large amount of internal use can interfere with the function of thyroid hormones.
As with all supplements, source matters for all products, especially those we use to clean the body while undergoing a detox. Due to contamination found in industrial products, this absolutely applies to bentonite clay.
My recommended sources:
G & R Calcium Bentonite (10lbs) (Amazon)
Quicksilver Ultrabinder* (Amazon) – blend with other binders
This is a unique binder because it binds bile salts as well as mycotoxins. In this way, it is beneficial for mold byproducts and heavy metals, even lead. In binding bile salts, it interferes with fat absorption, so it is often marketed as a weight loss supplement, though the studies on this have not shown consistently favorable results.
Downside: Chitosan is considered the natural equivalent to Wellchol or cholestyramine. Because of its interaction with bile salt metabolism it can limit nutrient uptake in the gut and is therefore not recommended for long term use. Lastly, chitosin is derived from shellfish, so this may not be an option for individuals with shellfish allergies.
My recommended sources:
Progressive Labs Chitosan* (amazon)
Chlorella is sourced from blue/green algae making it not just a great binder, but also a source for minerals, amino acids, fibers, nutrients and vitamins. It is one of the few bioavailable plant sources of B12, so a great supplement for those on a vegan diet.
I can see the beauty of the protector-God in designing this- chlorella, found in the algae of our water sources, is very good at sopping up persistent environmental pollutants like dioxins, preserving the cleanliness of one of the most important natural resources we have- water.
It has been shown effective in reducing dioxins in women who consume them during pregnancy, leading to about a 40% reduction of these cancer causing chemicals measured in breast milk!
Chlorella has also been effective in reducing mercury in the kidney and the brain, but falls short of binding mercury in the liver.
Downside: Not great at binding liver stores of mercury or other heavy metals. Chlorella has a tough outer wall that prevents access to the binding capabilities of this substance and can actually increase inflammation when not processed properly. (Source matters).
Some companies who provide chlorella use heat or chemicals (not desirable) to break up this outer wall, so it is important to be a discerning consumer. The best forms mechanically break up the outer wall of the chlorella.
Carbon and Fulvic/Humic Acids
I chose to group these together, but in reality there are a few subcategories in this realm of binders. Let me explain: Fulvic and Humic acid are natural sources of carbon. They are created from the breakdown of old vegetation by microbes in the soil (similar to compost). The natural deposits are called humic substances. The humic substances contain humic and fulvic acids.
When studied, the fulvic acids are separated from the humic acids in order to determine their individual benefits. When they are not separated, humic acid’s properties will dominate over fulvic acid, often blocking the benefits of it.
This fact is important to understand, as most products do not separate fulvic acid from humic acid, therefore, the benefits garnered will be primarily those of humic acid.
Shilajit is a humic substance that contains about 70% fulvic/humic acid. It is considered a weak source of fulvic and humic acids due to the low ratios of each. Its primary benefits are the mineral content contained in it.
The fulvic and humic acids are tolerated very well by the body because they are composed of the same molecules that make up the foundation of all biological organisms including humans- carbon, hydrogen, oxygen and nitrogen.
The benefit of this type of binder is that it is a healing binder. It is energetic and does not just bind toxins, but has the ability to donate electrons and restore balance. Furthermore, most fulvic/humic acid products naturally contain needed minerals such as iodine, potassium and manganese.
Here is a short summary of the benefits of each substance:
Humic acid: boosts immunity, detoxifies, has anti-viral properties, anti microbial, anti-inflammatory, energy balancing, improved mineral absorption, and improves oxygenation of the blood.
Fulvic acid: boosts immune system, improves absorption of minerals, increases brain function, acts as anti-oxidant, anti-parasitic, improves microbiome and gut enzymes, supports adrenals, and detoxifies heavy metals.
The research on fulvic and humic acids is vast and extensive and requires its own blog to fully give you an appreciation of all the health benefits associated with these.
When it comes to whole fulvic and humic acid products, my preferred product is
This leads us to the most advanced form of fulvic/humic acid technology ………
Carbon Technology (Utilizing Fulvic and Humic Acid)
This is unique to only one company who understood that the research of fulvic and humic acids was often based on the separation of the two substances. This technology involves the breaking apart of the fulvic acid from the humic acid and further isolating the active smaller components of each. Doing this increases the available electron energy allowing it the ability to work deeper within the body.
So, basically, they made the fulvic acid and humic acid more bioavailable and enhanced the benefits of each.
The carbon technology, also called bioactive carbon, enhances the activity of fulvic/humic acid-
- improving delivery of electrolytes to the cells
- enhancing their ability to repair cellular damage by providing the foundational atomic elements (carbon, oxygen, hydrogen and nitrogen)
- improving the removal of toxin (think of the strongest antioxidant available)
- It also acts to protect other natural healing substances like vitamins, minerals and herbs. This increases bioavailability of these substances for use in the body.
The carbon technology is found in most Microbe Formulas and Cellcore Products. Their binders contain carbon technology along with other binders, like zeolite to tailor the binder toward more specific toxins. The binders that they have available include the following:
From Microbe Formulas:
BioActive Carbon Biotox
Cellcore Biotoxin Binder