What is it?
Boron seems to affect the way the body handles other minerals such as calcium, magnesium, and phosphorus. It also seems to increase estrogen levels post-menopause. Boric acid, a common form of boron, can kill yeast that cause vaginal infections. Boron may have antioxidant effects.
People commonly use boron for boron deficiency and vaginal yeast infections. It is also used for athletic performance, menstrual cramps, osteoarthritis, osteoporosis, and many other conditions, but there is no good scientific evidence to support many of these uses.
How effective is it?
Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database rates effectiveness based on scientific evidence according to the following scale: Effective, Likely Effective, Possibly Effective, Possibly Ineffective, Likely Ineffective, Ineffective, and Insufficient Evidence to Rate.
The effectiveness ratings for BORON are as follows:
Likely effective for...
- Boron deficiency. Taking boron by mouth treats and prevents boron deficiency.
Possibly effective for...
- Skin damage caused by radiation therapy (radiation dermatitis). Applying boron gel to the skin might help prevent skin damage caused by radiation therapy.
- Vaginal yeast infections. Applying boric acid inside the vagina can help treat yeast infections (candidiasis), including infections that do not seem to get better with other medications and treatments.
Possibly ineffective for...
- Athletic performance. Taking boron by mouth doesn't seem to improve body mass, muscle mass, or testosterone levels in male bodybuilders.
Is it safe?
When applied to the skin: Sodium pentaborate pentahydrate gel, which contains boron, is likely safe when applied to the skin for up to 5 weeks.
When applied into the vagina: Boric acid, a common form of boron, is likely safe when used for up to 6 months. It can cause vaginal burning.
Special precautions & warnings:Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Boron is likely safe when taken by mouth during pregnancy or breast-feeding. For those 19-50 years old, do not take more than 20 mg daily; for those 14-18 years old, do not take more than 17 mg daily. Taking boron by mouth in higher doses is possibly unsafe and has been linked to lower birth weights and birth defects. Applying boric acid into the vagina during the first 4 months of pregnancy has also been linked to birth defects.
Children: Boron is likely safe when used appropriately. The amount that is safe depends on the child's age. Boron is possibly unsafe when taken by mouth in higher doses. Large quantities of boron can cause poisoning. Boric acid powder, a common form of boron, is possibly unsafe when applied in large amounts to prevent diaper rash.
Hormone-sensitive condition such as breast cancer, uterine cancer, ovarian cancer, endometriosis, or uterine fibroids: Boron might act like estrogen. If you have any condition that might be made worse by estrogen, avoid supplemental boron or high amounts of boron from foods.
Kidney disease: Do not take boron supplements if you have kidney problems. The kidneys have to work hard to flush out boron.
Are there interactions with medications?
- It is not known if this product interacts with any medicines.
Before taking this product, talk with your health professional if you take any medications.
Are there interactions with herbs and supplements?
- Boron supplements can increase how much magnesium stays in the body. This can increase blood levels of magnesium. But it's not clear if this is a big concern.
Are there interactions with foods?
- There are no known interactions with foods.
How is it typically used?
In supplements, adults shouldn't consume more than 20 mg daily. For children, the amount that is safe depends on age. Speak with a healthcare provider to find out what dose might be best for a specific condition.
To learn more about how this article was written, please see the Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database methodology.
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