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Barium is a natural, silvery-white earth metal. Highly reactive with air, barium is not found naturally in pure forms but as a component of ores. When barium is combined with other elements to form barium compounds, it has many applications. Barium carbonate is used as a rat poison, low amounts of barium sulfate may be ingested prior to receiving an x-ray to provide better imaging, and industries such as mining, refining, glass, and coal also utilize barium. Barium exposure, however, can cause serious health concerns. (more…)

When most people think about tin, they imagine tin cans, tin foil, and maybe even Rin Tin Tin. Tin is a naturally occurring metal of a familiar silver color. Tin is resistant to corrosion and often used as a coating for other metals such as steel. The most common example is the use of tin to line the insides of beverage cans and food containers. (more…)

The extensive use of toxic metals in industry and consumer products has resulted in a toxic metal proliferation in our daily lives and environment. Metals are not biodegradable and can remain in the environment to produce a variety of negative effects. Toxic metal exposure has been linked to organ damage and some metals have the potential to cause cancer. (more…)

Cadmium is a toxic metal that occurs naturally in the environment. Humans are exposed to cadmium mostly through plant-derived food. There is no safe margin of cadmium exposure and the need to lower human exposure is desperate. Cadmium produces a number of health concerns and is a known carcinogen. In industry, it's regulated by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and it has a very low permissible exposure level. (more…)

Milk thistle seed (Silybum marianum) has a history dating back over two thousand years as a favorite among herbalists for its positive effects on the liver and gallbladder. [1] The ancient philosophers Pliny and Galen both praised the herb for liver cleansing. Now, milk thistle is one of the most well-researched plants for liver support applications. (more…)