Honey is a good dietary source of boron.
- plasma lipid profiles 2
- brain function 2
- inflammatory markers 4
- steroid hormones (boron is able to increase testosterone levels) 35
Boron and vitamin D
Boron influences the metabolic activity of many enzymes, including those that metabolize vitamin D, magnesium, and calcium. 26 Because of this influence, boron is a necessary cofactor to the body’s proper utilization of vitamin D.
Due to its relationship with magnesium and vitamin D, boron may prove beneficial in osteoporosis. 9
Boron and vitamin D deficiency
In animal studies, boron has been shown to counteract the some of the effects of vitamin D deficiency due to its influence over calcium, magnesium, and phosphorus status. 101112 In addition, studies suggest boron has the ability to increase serum 25(OH)D levels. 4 310
Another possible way boron mitigates symptoms of vitamin D deficiency is by optimizing utilization of, or conserving, bodily stores of activated vitamin D, also known as calcitriol. 13
Supplementary and dietary boron
There is no official RDA for boron, however it is safe when used in doses less than the Tolerable Upper Intake Level (UL). UL is the maximum dose at which no harmful effects would be expected.
National Academy of Sciences UL for boron
Dried fruits and nuts are another great source for boron.
- Children 1-3 years: 3mg
- Children 4-8 years: 6mg
- Children 9-13 years: 11mg
- Adolescents 14-18 years: 17mg
- Adults: 20mg
- fresh fruits and vegetables
- dried prunes
Boron deficiency results in decreased blood levels of calcium and calcitonin and increases urinary excretion of calcium and magnesium levels. Boron deficiency also causes decreased serum concentrations of estrogen and testosterone, all of which are associated with calcium loss and bone demineralization.
Because boron is water soluble, risk of toxicity from its use is minimal. Low dose boron supplements have yet to show any toxic effect.
Large quantities of boron can cause digestive upsets, inflammation and peeling, irritability, tremors, convulsions, weakness, headaches, depression, diarrhea, vomiting, or other symptoms. 14
Boron should be avoided by those with kidney disease or limited kidney function and hormone-sensitive conditions such as: 14
- breast, uterine, or ovarian cancer
- uterine fibroids
Boric acid, a common form of boron, has been linked to birth defects and should not be used by pregnant women. 14
Page last edited: 18 May 2011
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