Boron (10,8 a.m.u.). Element of IIIrd periodic group, non-metal. Boron is arbitrary essential, immune-toxic element.
It was proven that this element is also necessary for normal functioning of human body. Boron compounds exhibit anti-inflammatory, hypolipidemic and anti-tumour properties. This element participates in calcium, phosphorus, magnesium exchange, affects genital glands and thyroid body, increases level of male reproductive hormones. It was proven that Boron decreases basic metabolism during thyrotoxicosis and increases insulin effect. Highest boron concentration was discovered in blood of new-borns.
Boron is mostly intaken by body together with plant food – apples, grapes, carrot, as long as it is necessary for growth of plants and is being deposed in plants. Boron is well absorbed in gastro-intestinal tract (more than 90%) and is absorbed by the body mostly as boric acid, transported in blood in the form of this neutral form and is being spread among all the tissues of our body, easily excreting by kidneys with urine.
Boric acid and sodium borate – low-toxic agents, intoxication effect could be caused only by the intake of high doses of borates. Human occupied in quarrying, recycling and production of boron compounds could have increased intake of this element together with inhaled dust. In manufacturing this element is being used in chemical glass manufacturing processes. Content of boron in adult human body is approx. 20 mg. More than a half of common quantity of boron is deposed in bones, but approx. 10% in soft tissues. In cases of bone diseases (arthrosis, arthritis) concentration of boron in bones decreases rapidly.
In medicine and household boron compounds are used as antiseptic agents, preserving agents, anti-fungal agents, overdose, or occasional intake of high dose could cause specific toxic effects. Daily requirement of this element is approx. 2-3 mg. Deficit is a rare occasion. But if present, it could cause osteoporosis, decrease in immunity, damage of magnesium, calcium, phosphorus metabolism, creation of reproductive hormones imbalance. Female could face a menopause pain syndrome, but male – impotency. Expressed deficit is peculiar to arthritis patients.
In medical treatment boron medicines are used to prevent kidney stone disease as long as it decreases concentration of oxalates, which are causing kidney stones together with calcium. This property makes boron irreplaceable element in prevention of this disease. But the overdose of boron, including so called supplements, could cause intoxication. Resulting in sickness, vomit, headache, diarrhoea, decrease of temperature.
Long-period overdosing of boron causes stress, appetite decline, sloughing of skin, nephritis, decreased libido. Higher limit of daily average safe dose of boron for humans is 13 mg. Toxic dose – 4 grams per day. Minimal lethal dose is not established. Case of lethal outcome when 18 – 20 grams of boron were intaken are reported. Irritation with boric acid solution could cause symptoms of intoxication, but treatment of nipples of lactating mother with boric acid solution could cause intoxication of nursing infants.