Before the invention of the refrigerator, it was common practice to drop a silver coin into a container of milk as a preservative because silver was known to prevent the growth of algae, bacteria and other undesirable organisms.
Dating back to ancient times, silver was also a popular remedy to stop the spread of diseases. Its use as a natural antibiotic continued all the way until the 1940s, when modern antibiotics arrived.
Today, obviously, people don’t need to drop silver coins into their water to experience colloidal silver benefits! All you need to do is carefully take a few drops from a bottle that you buy at the store, which is:
“A solution of water containing nanometre sized particles of suspended silver. The total silver content is expressed as milligrams of silver per litre (mg/L) of water which is numerically the same as parts per million (ppm). The total silver content is divided into two forms of silver: ionic silver and silver particles. (3)
There are basically three types of products that are marketed as “colloidal silver” and these can be categorized as:
Ionic silver –
Ionic silver solutions are products whose silver content primarily consists of silver ions. Although ionic silver is often marketed as colloidal silver, it’s not true colloidal silver. Because it’s the least expensive to produce, ionic silver is the most popular product in this category. The problem? It simply won’t produce the same benefits that true colloidal silver can.
Silver Protein –
In order to keep large silver particles suspended, silver protein-based products add gelatin. Silver protein is the second-most popular type of colloidal silver product on the market and can easily be made by adding water to silver protein powder. Again, it’s also often marketed and labeled as colloidal silver, but should not be confused for the real thing. Silver protein is less effective for human use, and you won’t experience the true colloidal silver benefits.
True Colloidal Silver –
Lastly, true silver colloids don’t contain any protein or other additives, as the vast majority of the silver content consists of nanometre-sized silver particles. (4)
Although the National Center for Complimentary and Integrative Health reports that colloidal silver may cause poor absorption of some drugs, there is limited research proving that side effects to colloidal silver use even exist. (17)
Nonetheless, you may come across many warnings about it causing an irreversible condition called argyria (when people turn blue). However, this is caused by misuse not of true colloidal silver, but through other cheaper products marketed as colloidal silver, such as ionic silver or silver protein.
One point to consider is that, because colloidal silver is such a potent antibacterial agent, you should be sure to supplement with probiotics during use to be sure that you maintain a proper balance of microflora.