Germanium is a trace element discovered in 1886 with characteristics similar to carbon, silicon and tin. Its properties make it useful in both health, and industrial applications. Germanium is ubiquitous in nature and our food supply but exists in relatively low amounts. Scientists estimate daily intake for most humans is between 0.1 and 4 mg.
Like many minerals, germanium exists in numerous forms. The form of a mineral greatly affects its biological activity and safety. Minerals like chromium, sodium, potassium, phosphorous and selenium are essential to health and wellness or even life itself. However, they also exist in forms that can be deadly. Fortunately, we generally know enough to avoid the deadly forms and benefit from proper levels of safe forms.
Germanium is one mineral for which considerable confusion still exists. The reckless acts of a few un-scrupled profiteers over a decade ago and the failure of scientists to correctly classify the different forms fostered over-generalized statements on the hazards of all germanium containing products. These elements, combined with an alarming departure by a few “scientists” from the true scientific method, set an ideal stage for misunderstanding.
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