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Minerals Part 1: Missing Minerals, Mistreated Plants, and an Analysis of Concentrace

by Jon Sasmor

Last Updated July 16, 2018


My interest in the trace mineral supplement Concentrace led to this article. After many fruitful experiments supplementing various vitamins and minerals, I thought I was still likely missing some of the less common trace minerals that are depleted from modern soils.

I had heard of the popular trace mineral supplement Concentrace. I ordered some. I received "Mega Mag" instead, but found out that "Mega Mag" is the same as "Concentrace." In the process, I got in touch with Dr. Darrin Starkey of Trace Minerals Research.

What's in Concentrace? Which minerals? I wanted to get as much information as I could about specific minerals so I could analyze the effects of the Concentrace. My conversation with Dr. Starkey and my research about some of the minerals in Concentrace is the subject of this article.

A Story of Missing Minerals and Mistreated Plants

In the process of writing this article, I came to think about minerals in new ways. For example, I never before looked at the periodic table and wondered what each element does in the human body. And nature is far more complex and beautiful even than the periodic table, for many elements can be present in a variety of different forms and can have different functions (and different toxicities) in those different forms.

From what I've read, today's widespread industrially farmed soils are tragically depleted of minerals. Minerals are missing from the soil, the food, the water, and in fact the entire food chain.

Plants are grown over and over again in the same soil, depleting the minerals. Then only three minerals (nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium, together "NPK") are added back as fertilizer. (Does this remind you of "enriched" flour: much of the nutrition removed and then a small subset added back?)

The strong fertilizers and lack of mineral balance kills off the beneficial microbes in the soil that support healthy plants. The plants grow nutrient depleted, the animals that eat them too, including people. (E.g. Wilson 2015; Agricola 2008.) Many new disease states are skyrocketing in prevalence.

Also, natural minerals often are removed from the water supply during "purification" or "treatment." For example, in the town where I am now, almost everyone drinks reverse osmosis purified water, with minerals almost entirely removed. Demineralized water might even leach minerals out of the body. (E.g. Wilson 2016.)

Many of us think of the cruel and violent practices at industrial animal farms. If you haven't already seen some of the gruesome videos, I think it's well worth it to know what makes the meat, fish, dairy, and eggs sold in the supermarket. For example, here is a 2011 Mercy for Animals undercover video of animal farming.

In addition to cruel living conditions, farm animals may be given nutrient-depleted foods inappropriate to their species, laden with pesticides and chemicals. Then the animals are given loads of antibiotics and hormones to make them grow fat and prevent rampant infections from killing them.

Quite unfortunately, plants on industrial farms seem to get treated roughly the same as animals — grown for size, yield, and most of all, profit; NOT for nutrition, taste, or connection with nature.

Like the animals, plants are nutrient deficient. The soils lack the minerals that support plants, and only 3 (NPK) are usually added back. Organic produce grows with NPK fertilizer too, and adding organic matter from nutritionally deficient plants doesn't add back the minerals.

The plants grow with NPK well enough to get large and pretty despite being nutritionally poor. However, the plants' immune function is sabotaged.

Due to widespread mineral deficiency and otherwise unhealthy plants, artificial chemicals are needed to prevent the plants from dying or being eaten. The chemicals kill helpful lifeforms as well as harmful ones. Just as animals' symbiotic microbes (and ours) are killed by widespread use of antibiotics and chemicals, similarly symbiotic microbes in the soil are killed by the fertilizers and chemicals.

It looks to me like industrially farmed plants are treated just as badly as industrally farmed animals.

  • Both are grown in unnatural environments.
  • Both are grown in a weakened state of nutritional deficiency (and therefore are less nutritious as food).
  • Both have their symbiotic microbes massacred by added antibiotics and chemicals.

(E.g. Agricola 2008.)

If we see a plant and it looks like a plant (and perhaps it's even grown to look especially good), it still might not have the nutrition our bodies expect from plants.

Perhaps we might understand more in the future about the consciousness of plants. (E.g. Pollan 2013; Macfarlane 2016.) If so, we might see the conditions where plants are industrially farmed as just as cruel as those in the animal videos.

Are vegans prejudiced seeing plants as lesser in consciousness than animals? Is this prejudice similar to many people's prejudices of seeing other living beings as inferior to humans? These questions are troubling to me and are beyond the scope of this article.

The research below leaves me wondering about my diet of mainly industrially farmed plants, and occasionally organic industrially farmed plants when available. What happened to the minerals? Am I getting minerals like how they used to be in plant foods?

Well, in the face of plants and animals and water that lack the minerals they used to have, what can one do?

  1. Look for food from farmers who pay attention to the soil minerals. This food may be hard to find.
  2. Find a way to grow your own food. This is an option I am investigating myself.
  3. Add minerals back to the diet as a supplement. At the present time, this option may be the most accessible to many people. Concentrace is one way to add minerals back, and is analyzed below. Other forms of trace minerals supplements are discussed briefly in the next section.
  4. Start a comprehensive protocol to balance minerals including changes to diet, supplements, and lifestyle. Perhaps adjusting ratios of a few key minerals might regulate overall balancing of minerals. These protocols also are quite interesting and are mentioned briefly in the next section.

As you can see, my journey researching Concentrace has been fascinating and heartbreaking. It has changed my view of veganism, and made me wonder about whether industially grown plants are as harmful to the body as industrially farmed animals. It has even made me give serious thought to living on a farm or rancho and studying soil minerals.

Hopefully you will find the information about minerals helpful. May your life and spirit be rich with the minerals of the earth!

Trace Mineral Supplements

One type of trace mineral supplements is derived from concentrated seawater. Concentrace by Trace Minerals Research is one seawater supplement and is the example examined in more detail below. Another sea mineral supplement is Max-Well.

Another class of trace mineral supplements derives minerals from fulvic acid in various rich soils around the world. These supplements could be seen as highly valuable / expensive dirt. For example, in no particular order: Dr. Morter's, TJ Clark's, Intramin, Dr. Berg's, Pure Fulvic Minerals, Ultra Minerals, Supreme Fulvic, Alpha, Fulvic Rich, Restore, etc. The fulvic acid minerals come bound to soil organic matter. Those selling fulvic acid say the organic binding facilitates the availability of those beneficial minerals and also protects against damage from toxic minerals. (E.g. Thiel unknown year, Supreme Fulvic unknown year.) Dr. Wilson says that fulvic acid supplements are likely to contain toxic minerals (Wilson 2018).

Several mineral analyses of fulvic acid supplements are available: Dr. Berg's (see FAQ tab), Ultra Minerals, Alpha, Fulvic Rich.

I noticed that the fulvic acid analyses measure many more elements than the 35 analytes in Concentrace, so there might be a lot to learn from analysis. Of the 6 minerals discussed below that are abundant in Concentrace, the fulvic supplements mostly have far less of those minerals, although with great variation. My initial impression is the aluminum content of the fulvic supplements might be a concern.

The idea of eating fertile dirt is interesting! Detailed analysis of fulvic acid minerals might be for a future article.

Also, there are some fascinating protocols that assess mineral status by a certain method of hair analysis, and then make diet, supplement, and lifestyle changes to balance the mineral levels. A few of these protocols I've found so far are: Dr. Paul Eck and Dr. Larry Wilson's Nutritional Balancing, as well as, Morley Robbins and Dr. Ben Edwards' Root Cause Protocol. (More about these in Part 2 of the Minerals series!)

Question: Which Minerals Are Most Quantitatively Significant in Concentrace?

Concentrace by Trace Minerals Research is a popular mineral supplement. It contains Utah's Great Salt Lake water, concentrated 78 times, and with sodium removed.

Today, many minerals are filtered out of drinking water, processed out of food, or removed from the soil where food is grown. Many of us (or almost everyone) may be getting less minerals than our bodies evolved to expect. Concentrace is an intriguing possibility to replenish minerals.

On April 25, 2018, I spoke by phone with Dr. Darrin Starkey, Manager of Education and Training for Trace Minerals Research. I asked Dr. Starkey: Which minerals in Concentrace are most quantitatively significant relative to typical dietary intake?

Dr. Starkey's Answer: Concentrace Benefits Us Beyond Scientific Knowledge of Individual Minerals

Dr. Starkey told me the following:
  • Balancing the body with trace minerals can help it to work properly and efficiently at allowing it to heal itself. With all the different health challenges we face today, proper mineral balancing can address these dysfunctions.
  • Dr. Starkey has been taking Concentrace for 29 years and working for Trace Minerals Research for 27 years.
  • Magnesium is most concentrated in the heart. Stress is the silent killer, and magnesium helps respond to stress. In addition, everyone should take steps to reduce stress in their lives.
  • Chlorine is needed for stomach acid, especially as we grow older.
  • Scientific knowledge is incomplete about what all the individual minerals do.
  • Unlike other supplements, Concentrace comes from nature. It gives us minerals that can help us now before scientists even understand what they each do.
  • Concentrace can be used topically.
  • Five cups of body fluids are lost daily and must be replenished. Minerals are lost with the body fluids.
  • Reverse osmosis or other purified water (such as most bottled water) washes minerals out of the body. Concentrace puts the minerals back.

The Periodic Table is Big and There's Still Much Unknown About Biochemistry of Minerals

It's a special time for the Periodic Table of Elements: the first seven periods (rows) now are complete and all 118 elements have names.

Of these, the first 94 elements occur naturally.

Of these, 83 elements exist in stable forms (while the others are radioactive decay products).

Of these:

  • 5 elements are common in organic compounds such as food (hydrogen, carbon, nitrogen, oxygen, sulfur).
  • 15 elements are deemed essential minerals with Reference Intakes by the US government (calcium, chromium, copper, fluorine, iodine, iron, magnesium, manganese, molybdenum, phosphorus, selenium, zinc, potassium, sodium, chloride). The government recommendations reflect scientific knowledge of intakes necessary to prevent major diseases of deficiency or excess. However, the recommendations say little about intakes for optimal health, even for those 15 minerals already known to be essential.
  • 63 more elements apparently have unknown health impacts. A few, such as lithium, boron, bromine, strontium, and tin already have some suggested benefits. Others, such as arsenic, cadmium, mercury, lead, and beryllium have known toxic effects, but could also have unknown benefits at very tiny amounts. There are many other mineral elements about which little is known. Colloidal solutions of many rarer minerals are available from Tim Eck. Those who experiment with taking rarer minerals seem to point out specific spiritual benefits of many individual minerals.

Scientific knowledge lacks consensus about optimal intake of even the known essential minerals. And even if we're beginning to know about physical and mental effects of some essential minerals, we have barely started looking at spiritual benefits of those minerals and others. Science is far from identifying optimal intakes of all 83 naturally ocurring stable elements. In our systems of processed food, filtered water, and depleted soil, almost all of us may be sub-optimal in intake of many of those 83 elements.

I searched on Google Scholar for scientific articles about Concentrace. I found two related articles about an Indian randomized, placebo-controlled study using Concentrace to treat osteoarthritis. The Concentrace helped osteoarthritis. (Bansal 2012a, 2012b).

I agree with Dr. Starkey: Concentrace is a rare opportunity to experience benefits of minerals beyond the limits of current scientific knowledge.

Of course, we can still look at which minerals are most significant within the scope of current science and available data for 35 of the minerals:

A Rough Calculation: Quantitative Analysis of Concentrace


Concentrace Minerals Content

Mineral analysis for Concentrace for 35 minerals is available here.

The label dosage of Concentrace is 1/2 teaspoon (about 40 drops). 1/2 U.S. teaspoon equals 2.46 mL or 0.00246 L.

Note: The dropper in Concentrace has a 1 mL measurement marking. I measured 20 drops = 1 mL, which is a standard dropper. Then one serving of 2.46 mL would be about 49 drops. I will adopt 49 drops as the standard 1/2 tsp serving.

The mineral concentrations are given in parts per million, ppm. 1 L water ≈ 1 kg ≈ 1 million mg. Therefore, 1 ppm ≈ 1 mg per 1 L water.

To find the amount of each mineral (in mg) in a 1/2 tsp serving (49 drops) of Concentrace, I multiplied the ppm amount of mineral by 0.00246 L:

Table 1. Mineral content (in milligrams) in 1/2 tsp serving (2.46 mL, 49 drops) Concentrace
Atomic #ElementMineral Content (mg)

Daily Minerals Intake

I surveyed scientific articles for data on daily intake of individual minerals. My survey was informal, more of a data sample for a back-of-the-envelope calculation than a meta-analysis. I reviewed a sampling of scientific articles that I found with Google Scholar.

I sought to narrow down, to the current state of knowledge and measurement, the approximate ranges of mineral intakes. Though only an incomplete sample, the data below is a more comprehensive set of mineral intakes than I could find elsewhere on the internet or in scientific journals.

Our intake of different minerals varies by orders of magnitude, from fractions of a microgram of some to hundreds of milligrams of others. Intakes of the same mineral may even vary by several orders of magnitude among people, for certain minerals (see data below).

Some studies reported median intakes, while some reported ranges. Many studies compared their results to other previous data. I took all the data I found, and simply produced a range of reported numerical intake values for each mineral.

After I had reviewed several articles which covered groups of common minerals, I tried to fill in the data gaps by finding articles about specific minerals still missing data. I sought at least a few values for each element whenever possible:

Table 2. Ranges of Daily Minerals Intake (in milligrams)
Atomic #ElementIntake Range (mg)References
11Sodium1640-53103, 5, 28, 40, 44, 48, 49
17Chloride1500-910012, 13, 44, 48
19Potassium861-61321, 3, 5, 27, 28, 40, 44, 48, 49
15Phosphorus800-22201, 3, 28, 40, 48
20Calcium220-15501, 3, 5, 6, 8, 28, 40, 44, 48, 49
12Magnesium130-5503, 5, 6, 28, 40, 44, 48, 49
26Iron4.2-31.43, 5, 6, 8, 28, 40, 44, 48, 49, 50
30Zinc4-241, 2, 3, 5, 6, 28, 40, 44, 48, 49, 50
14Silicon3.5-501, 31, 50
25Manganese1.55-11.81, 2, 3, 5, 6, 8, 28, 44, 48, 49, 50
13Aluminum1-452, 3, 7, 8, 24, 31, 44, 50
38Strontium0.86-48, 26, 28, 44, 50
35Bromide0.8-1711, 31, 44, 50, 52
29Copper0.68-5.81, 2, 3, 5, 6, 8, 28, 44, 48, 49, 50
52Tellurium0.6-3.633, 50
37Rubidium0.5-21.326, 27, 28, 30, 31, 44, 50
9Fluoride0.4-8.914, 15, 16, 17, 18, 31, 50
5Boron0.25-31, 2, 3, 8, 31, 44, 50
22Titanium0.199-134, 35, 50
50Tin0.19-408, 31, 44, 50, 51
57Lanthanum0.120-338, 39 (medical dose)
42Molybdenum0.070-0.52, 3, 8, 26, 44, 48, 50
28Nickel0.069-0.7992, 5, 8, 24, 28, 31, 44, 48, 50
56Barium0.058-1.68, 28, 50
24Chromium0.02-0.521, 2, 5, 6, 8, 28, 30, 31, 40, 44, 48, 50
34Selenium0.017-0.565, 6, 8, 30, 40, 44, 48, 50
3Lithium0.016-3.18, 23, 26, 28, 31, 44, 50
53Iodide0.015-36, 19, 20, 21, 22, 40, 44, 48, 50
82Lead0.015-0.5508, 31, 44, 50
33Arsenic0.010-15, 8, 9, 10, 31, 44, 50
48Cadmium0.010-0.1502, 8, 28, 31, 44, 50
27Cobalt0.006-0.3002, 5, 8, 24, 28, 44, 48, 50
23Vanadium0.005-2.026, 31, 44, 48, 50
32Germanium0.004-1.58, 31
55Cesium0.004-0.12227, 28, 30, 44, 50
80Mercury0.003-0.0608, 44, 50
74Tungsten0.001-0.01336, 44, 50
51Antimony0.0008-0.0748, 30, 44, 50
81Thallium0.0005-0.0048, 50
47Silver0.0004-0.0824, 26, 30, 50
83Bismuth0.0004-0.00338, 24
79Gold0.0001-0.0078, 24, 44, 50
21Scandium0.00003-0.00330, 41, 44, 50

For references for the above mineral intake data, please click here.


Concentrace to Daily Intake Ratios

I sorted the 35 known minerals in Concentrace by ratio of amount in a daily serving of Concentrace to amount in typical daily mineral intake, either low end of intake range (Table 3) or high end of intake range (Table 4).

By either way of counting, the same 6 minerals (though in a slightly different order) were the most abundant in Concentrace relative to daily intake:

  • Scandium
  • Lithium
  • Boron
  • Selenium
  • Bromine
  • Magnesium

More about these 6 minerals below.

For each of these 6 minerals, a daily Concentrace dose contains >1 times the daily intake at the low end of the intake range and >0.1 times the daily intake at the high end of the intake range:

Table 3. Ratio of mineral amount in daily 1/2 tsp serving (2.46 mL, 49 drops) Concentrace to amount in daily intake, low end of intake range
Atomic #ElementRatio = Amount in Concentrace Dose / Lowest Daily IntakeLog10(Ratio)

Table 4. Ratio of mineral amount in daily 1/2 tsp serving (2.46 mL, 49 drops) Concentrace to amount in daily intake, high end of intake range
Atomic #ElementRatio = Amount in Concentrace Dose / Highest Daily IntakeLog10(Ratio)

Significant Minerals in Concentrace


Scandium has been called "Element of Surprises," and it's a surprise to find scandium at the #1 position among the 35 measured elements in Concentrace, relative to daily intake (Table 3; Table 4).

No element smaller than scandium (atomic number 21) seems to get so little attention. Knowledge of the biological effects of scandium in humans is just beginning to take shape. It's an example of how we can get minerals beyond our current understanding by taking Concentrace.

Despite the relative lack of research about scandium compared with other minerals, Dr. Chaim T. Horovitz has assembled a 600+ page, 2 volume book, "Biochemistry of Scandium and Yttrium." Volume 1 (1999); Volume 2 (2000).

Dr. Horovitz notes that:

  • Scandium interacts chemically with nucleic acids and several other biological molecules (vol. 1, p. 297).
  • Scandium levels vary widely among people (vol. 1, ch. 5).
  • Scandium tissue levels seem to be increased in certain diseases but decreased in others (vol. 2, pp. 129, 268; additional references: Cihan 2011; Gómez-Aracena 2002; Zaichick 1995).
  • Scandium has been found to increase or decrease activity of certain enzymes (vol. 2, p. 103).
  • Scandium can replace calcium ions in many biochemical events (vol. 2, p. 144).
  • Scandium has antimicrobial and anticoagulant properties (vol. 2, p. 269).
  • "Today, the periodic table of elements is like an iceberg floating in the ocean of an incomprehensible human perception of nature (Fig. 10-19). Only the tip of the iceberg is seen, and almost only the tip is investigated (the essential elements). The largest part of the iceberg (the "not essential" elements) is, practically and theoretically, hardly known" (vol. 2, p. 270).
  • "The beneficial and stimulatory effects of scandium and yttrium, which are well proven in several biological processes and medical applications justify further intensive research of their biochemical, physiological, and toxicological properties. It may be speculated that discovery of unknown biochemical properties of many chemical elements will yield new insights into the mysteries of life" (vol 2, p. 145).
  • "Even though they are not as well known as the established essential elements, such as zinc or selenium, scandium and yttrium are good supporting actors in the play of life" (vol. 2, pp. 271-2).

The benefits or dangers of scandium await further research. Lack of data about scandium might be a good reason to take a lower dose than the label dosage of Concentrace.


Lithium has been proposed as an essential nutrient — for neurology, stem cell proliferation, vitamin B12 and folate uptake, and many other functions (Marshall 2015; Schrauzer 2002; Schrauzer 1992). Lithium deficiency may diminish iodine retention and be associated with iodine deficiency (Schöpfer 2011).

Higher lithium content in drinking water has correlated with reduced violence, crime, and suicide rates (Vita 2014; Schrauzer 2002; Gwern 2018). Higher amounts of lithium in drinking water may correlate with reduced mortality too (Zarse 2011).

Lithium's mental health and societal benefits are potentially remarkable. Some researchers even suggest adding low-dose lithium to drinking water, to match the higher lithium levels in the drinking water of less violent places. (Fels NY Times op-ed 2014; Gwern 2018; Schöpfer 2011.)

Note that each single tablet of 300 mg lithium carbonate pharmaceutical drug would provide 56mg of lithium, about 30 times more than the daily Concentrace, and far more than in any drinking water. Sometimes several tablets per day might be prescribed and might cause toxic effects. The higher pharmaceutical dose is far beyond the lithium naturally in drinking water.

A daily dose of Concentrace contains 1.9 milligrams of lithium (Table 1). This amount is more than 100 times what a person would get with the low end of lithium intake, presumably with low-lithium drinking water (Table 3), and 0.60 times what a person with the high end of lithium intake would get, presumably with high-lithium drinking water (Table 4).

So even just a few drops of Concentrace will go a long way to protect against the low lithium levels in many places' drinking waters. And a full daily dose might provide all the advantages a person would get by living in a place with high-lithium drinking water.

The lithium alone seems like a great reason to try at least a few drops a day of Concentrace.


Boron offers us a variety of benefits:

  • Boron helps the body direct calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, copper, and other minerals to bones and other places where they're needed. (Nielsen 2017, 1997, 1994; Donoiu 2018; Roth 2017; Last 2016; Hunt 2012.)
  • Boron improves brain function. Low boron intake reduces behavioral activation and mental alertness. (Nielsen 2017, 1997.)
  • Boron may chelate fluoride out of the body. (Last 2016.) Though fluoride is added to toothpaste and drinking water, many people think this fluoride is toxic.
  • Boron may activate vitamin D and protect against vitamin D deficiency. Vitamin D deficiency has become very common, and maybe boron deficiency might be a reason. (Last 2016; Hunt 2012; Miljkovic 2004 Nielsen 1997.)
  • Boron may naturally improve levels of testosterone, estrogen, and other hormones. (Last 2016; Naghii 2011; Nielsen 1994; Roth 2017.)
  • Boron is anti-inflammatory and reduces oxidative stress. (Donoiu 2018; Nielsen 2017; Hunt 2012; Naghii 2011.)
  • Boron is a potent antiseptic, antifungal, and antiviral. It may combat harmful overgrowth of Candida and other fungi. (Last 2016.)
  • Boron supports bone and joint health. Boron may improve osteoarthritis and other forms of arthritis. (Nielsen 2017; Last 2016; Hunt 2012; Newnham 1994, Unknown year, Unknown year.) Boron in Concentrace may be part of why a randomized, placebo-controlled study found that Concentrace helped osteoarthritis. (Bansal 2012a, 2012b).
  • Boron may correlate with lower rates of prostate, cervical, lung, and breast cancers (Nielsen 2017.)
  • "[B]oron is for the parathyroids what iodine is for the thyroid." (Last 2016.)
  • Boron may improve methylation and reduce homocysteine levels. (Donoiu 2018; Nielsen 2017.)
  • Boron may support detoxification of sulfites. (Roberts 2018.)
  • Boron may improve insulin sensitivity. (Hunt 2012.)
  • Boron may protect DNA from radiation damage. (Olree 2005.)
  • Boron supplement gives me peaceful, restful sleep with vivid dreams. This is the strongest effect I've noticed since starting a boron supplement in mid-2017. If I skip the boron supplement, I will wake up feeling much less rested.

Walter Last reports that boron as an arthritis cure has been politically suppressed in favor of pharmaceutical drugs.

There is a scientific journal devoted to boron — Journal of Boron.

It's wonderful to see boron high on the list of most concentrated minerals in Concentrace! There's a significant amount of boron, 1.6 mg, in a daily dose which might help many people a lot!

Concentrace's 1.6 mg of boron is about the same difference described by Rex Newnham between (1) African villagers eating native maize grown without fertilizer, getting 2 mg a day of boron, with 3% arthritis rate, vs. (2) Africans who moved to the city eating industrial fertilized hybrid maize, getting 0.5 mg a day of boron, with 20% arthritis rate.


Selenium is essential for:

  • making the potent thyroid hormone T3
  • glutathione function and fighting harmful oxidative stress
  • brain function
  • immune function, including antiviral
  • reproduction
  • anti-inflammatory
  • heavy metal detoxification
  • possible anti-cancer and cardio-protective benefits
  • possible mental and spiritual benefits

(Rayman 2017, 2012; Wilson 2017, 2015.)

Tim Ferriss credits correcting a selenium deficiency as a key factor to tripling his testosterone level.

I'm still not sure how to pronounce "selenium."

Selenium intake varies widely depending on selenium soil content (Rodrigues 2017). In the United States, selenium in surface soils is lower in much of the West and Southeast, and higher in much of the Midwest and Northeast (USGS 2014).

There doesn't seem to be a consensus on optimal selenium intake. Dr. Wilson thinks that selenium deficiency is extremely common, and selenium-rich foods or supplements will help (Wilson 2017, 2015). Dr. Rayman thinks there is a U-shaped curve to selenium's benefits, and that supplementation of 200 mcg/day or more in a selenium-rich country, or 300 mcg/day otherwise, might increase risk of cancer and mortality (Rayman 2017).

Studies are inconclusive about selenium's cancer-fighting benefits (Vinceti 2018). Yet those studies finding harm at higher doses of selenium appear to have several possible flaws:

  • The studies may use less effective or more toxic forms of selenium. Several specific forms of selenium, rather than others, have established anti-cancer mechanisms (Stokel 2012; Schrauzer 2009).
  • Selenium may be harmful in the absence of enough iodine (Iwakura 2011).
  • Selenium may have been given to some study participants alongside a potentially harmful synthetic form of vitamin E (e.g. Kristal 2014).

Given the current suggestions that 0 mcg might be too little and 200 mcg might be too much, the 100 mcg of selenium in a daily dose of Concentrace (Table 1) seems like a good amount. 100 mcg of selenium would probably help many people.


Bromine, though not yet recognized by government nutrition guidelines, appears to be an essential nutrient for mechanical strength and signalling in epithelial tissues. Bromine contributes to the function of basement membranes (McCall 2014). Thus, bromine may be critical to healing wounds (Jafari 2017).

Bromine also has been suggested to benefit sleep (Nielsen 1986). Bromine may enhance the beneficial effects of lithium (Harvey 1992).

Too much bromine can cause toxicity by substituting for chlorine and iodine. Harmful amounts of bromine could be in food from agricultural use of bromine or brominated flour or as an additive to soda. (van Leeuwen 1987.)

However, the amounts of bromine known to cause problems are much larger than the amount in Concentrace. 24 milligrams a day for a 60-kg (132-lb) person has been suggested as an acceptable daily intake. (World Health Organization 2010; van Leeuwen 1987.) And 1 mg/kg of bromine, which would be 60 mg daily for a 60-kg/132-lb person, was found to cause no change to physical exam and endocrine hormone levels (Sangster 1982). By comparison, a daily serving of Concentrace contains only 3.7 milligrams of bromine. (Table 1).

The bromine in Concentrace might help our endothelial tissue, wound healing, sleep, and lithium function. And it's probably much less than would be a harmful amount.


Magnesium is the rising superstar of minerals.

Concentrace features magnesium prominently (Table 1). In fact, Concentrace seems to be alternately sold as "Mega Mag."

Here is a journal editorial summarizing both the widespread deficiency and critical importance of magnesium:

"Approximately 50% of Americans consume less than the [Estimated Average Requirement] for magnesium, and some age groups consume substantially less. A growing body of literature from animal, epidemiologic, and clinical studies has demonstrated a varied pathologic role for magnesium deficiency that includes electrolyte, neurologic, musculoskeletal, and inflammatory disorders; osteoporosis; hypertension; cardiovascular diseases; metabolic syndrome; and diabetes. Studies have also demonstrated that magnesium deficiency is associated with several chronic diseases and that a reduced risk of these diseases is observed with higher magnesium intake or supplementation."

(Costello 2016.)

Magnesium deficiency may affect most of the population. There just isn't as much magnesium in the soil as before. And processing food takes out even more magnesium. So does softening drinking water. Calcium and vitamin D supplements may deplete body magnesium further, which is unfortunate because magnesium is needed to experience the benefits of calcium and vitamin D. (Dean 2017; Dean 2011).

Dr. Dean has presented a persuasive case for magnesium deficiency as a primary cause of almost all modern health problems. Indeed, almost all body processes need energy as ATP, and ATP needs magnesium.

All the methylation reactions need magnesium.

The 250 milligrams of magnesium in a serving of Concentrace (Table 1) is a great feature which probably could benefit lots of people.


The amount of arsenic in Concentrace, though of a lower order of magnitude than the top 6 known minerals above, still seems relevant because the arsenic is in inorganic form. The inorganic form of arsenic is more toxic than most organic forms (Bae 2017; Jomova 2011). For example, seaweed, though higher in arsenic, contains primarily organic forms (Lewis 2007).

Based on studies of animals, arsenic is probably essential in a small amount, perhaps 12-25 micrograms of inorganic arsenic daily. However no human deficiency of arsenic has yet been observed. (Nielsen 2016; Dermience 2015; Uthus 1993.)

Arsenic is toxic, especially in chronic exposure to high levels of inorganic arsenic. Arsenic causes:

Arsenic poisoning occurs due to former widespread use of arsenic pesticides and due to naturally occuring high arsenic levels in certain locations' drinking water. Rice absorbs and concentrates arsenic far more than other plant foods. Those on a gluten-free diet may have higher arsenic levels due to eating more rice (Punshon 2018; Bulka 2017).

Some have questioned Concentrace on the basis of arsenic. (Patel 2014; Peak Testosterone unknown year a, b.)

Concentrace has about the same amount of inorganic arsenic as rice. A label daily serving of Concentrace contains around 5 micrograms of inorganic arsenic (Table 1). A 45-g serving of rice (1/4 cup uncooked, 165 calories) contains 6.6 micrograms (brown rice) or 3.7 micrograms (white rice) of inorganic arsenic — with substantial variations based on region of growth and type of rice (Consumer Reports 2014).

Consumer Reports recommends limiting rice to 2 servings a week, or more of certain types of rice, due to inorganic arsenic (Consumer Reports 2014). Perhaps inorganic arsenic might be a reason to limit intake of Concentrace too — maybe 10 or 20 drops a day instead of the 49-drop label serving, or taking some days off.

However, as discussed above, Concentrace contains many beneficial minerals. Some, such as lithium, boron, and magnesium, help the methylation cycle of biochemical reactions. Methylation is how the body detoxifies arsenic (Bae 2017; Reed 2015). Thus, the other beneficial minerals may protect against the inorganic arsenic in Concentrace.

The arsenic in Concentrace might be as harmful as eating a serving of rice. I'm guessing maybe not because the other beneficial minerals in Concentrace will play a protective role against the arsenic.


Iodine and selenium work together in the thyroid. Studies of people in Zaire deficient in both iodine and selenium found that a 50 microgram selenium supplement, given without iodine, exacerbated iodine deficiency and worsened thyroid function. (Iwakura 2011; Vanderpas 1993; Contempré 1992; Contempré 1991.)

Since a daily serving of Concentrace contains 100 micrograms of selenium (Table 1), more than used in the Zaire studies, it's possible that the selenium in Concentrace could worsen iodine deficiency.

Concentrace does contain 7 micrograms of iodine (Table 1), but this is a very small portion of daily intake (Table 3; Table 4). It may be important to have an additional reliable source of iodine when taking Concentrace.

Iodine plays many roles in the body — not just in the thyroid, also in the brain (IQ), breast, skin, prostate, immune system, mucous membranes and more. Iodine deficiency is common in many nations due to soil conditions. (Sircus 2017; Abraham various years; Sircus & Last 2007.)

Due to low iodine content of modern plant foods, low iodine status may affect as many as 25% of vegetarians and 80% of vegans (Krajcovicova-Kudlackova 2003).

Optimal intake of iodine is controvesial. The U.S. government recommends an RDA of 150 mcg for adults with an upper limit of 1100 mcg (U.S. Nat'l Institutes of Health 2018). The Japan government recommends an RDA of 130 mcg for adults with an upper limit of 3000 mcg (Japan Minister of Health 2015). In Japan, a country known for excellent health, traditional Japanese diet includes high iodine intake from seaweed, with total iodine intake estimated 1,000-3,000 mcg (Zava 2011). Thus, traditional Japanese iodine intake is higher than the U.S. upper limit.

The widespread modern increase in fluorine (and also bromine and chlorine and various toxins) leads some doctors to recommend much larger daily amounts of iodine, 12500 to 50000 mcg. (Sircus 2017; Abraham various years; Sircus & Last 2007.) Depending on who you ask, fluorine is either a beneficial nutrient to strengthen teeth, or a potent neurotoxin which is poisoning the water supply. Fluorine may replace iodine in the thyroid, pineal gland and other parts of the body. Levels of fluorine similar to those added to tap water reduced the IQ of children in numerous studies (Connett 2018; Choi 2012). Researchers of developmental neurotoxicity stated:

"For lead, methylmercury, and arsenic, the evidence available today clearly shows that these trace elements are contributing to the “silent pandemic”. Less evidence is available on manganese, fluoride, and cadmium, but experience from the previously mentioned trace elements suggest that, with time, adverse effects are likely to be documented at exposures previously thought to be low and safe."

(Grandjean 2015). Fluoride is abundant today and may be a toxic substitute for iodine. We may be more prone to iodine deficiency now.

Concentrace might be better with some extra iodine together with it. How much is enough, there isn't a clear answer. Maybe eating some iodized salt or a multivitamin with 100 or 200 mcg might be enough, maybe not. I currently take 2500 mcg a day of iodine as Lugol's solution, approximately matching the amount in the Japanese diet. The Lugol's has given me sharper, clearer thinking and maybe helped in other ways too. I will try a higher dose gradually.

It's too soon to say an optimal iodine dosage. Due to the selenium in Concentrace, anyone taking at least half the label daily dose of Concentrace might want to get at least a little bit of extra iodine.

Other Minerals Not in Concentrace

Concentrace is not a complete source of all minerals we might need. Of the 35 minerals measured, several important nutritional minerals were found only at very low levels.

The following minerals have <1% in Concentrace of the low-end daily intake:

  • Nitrogen
  • Phosphorus
  • Zinc
  • Calcium
  • Iron
  • Copper
  • Manganese
  • Strontium
  • Sodium
  • Potassium
  • Molybdenum

(See Table 3.)

My Own Experience with Concentrace

My experience is preliminary. I will update again after more time.

Since April 27, 2018, I've taken 2 to 20 drops of Concentrace per day, with a few days off. This is about 1/25 to 2/5 of the label dosage discussed above. As with most supplements, I seem very sensitive to effects at lower dosages than most people need.

The Concentrace gives me a general sense of well-being. It builds an inpenetrable subtle layer of positivity. The positivity remains underneath everything else that's happening. It's not simply a good mood, it's more of an underlying positive outlook. If I stop taking Concentrace for a day, a more negative outlook will return. 4 drops a day is enough to achieve the positive effect; 2 drops a day isn't enough.

Concentrace seems to support methylation for me, possibly by enhancing the function of vitamin B12. My guess is that this is an effect of the lithium enhancing vitamin B12 transport into the cells (see lithium section above). For example, Concentrace at night affects me identically to taking methyl B12 at night: shorter sleep, more vivid, lots of dreams — but too active sleep, not restful, I get tired especially after a few consecutive nights of this kind of sleep. Even 1 drop of Concentrace at bedtime is enough to affect the sleep. Therefore, I now take Concentrace in the morning only.

Summary and Recommendation

Concentrace is a special opportunity to take a supplement derived from a natural source, with benefits beyond those minerals we already know. Of the 35 minerals for which we already have data, Concentrace is a rich source of scandium, lithium, boron, selenium, bromine, and magnesium. These minerals are likely to benefit many people.

The inorganic arsenic in Concentrace is comparable to rice, and Concentrace also has other minerals which would help detoxify arsenic. One concern about the known minerals of Concentrace would be to make sure there is a separate source of iodine to accompany the selenium in Concentrace. Selenium and iodine work together in the thyroid.

The label dosage of 1/2 teaspoon (2.46 mL) would be 49 drops. It seems like a lot of people would benefit from this dosage. If this amount seems too strong, you could take less, 1 or 5 or 10 or 20 drops a day. Even 4-5 drops has provided a highly beneficial effect for me. This tiny dose might go a long way against a deficiency of lithium, boron, or selenium (Table 3).

As with other supplements, starting at a lower dosage and building up may work best. Watch out for possible effects on sleep if taking Concentrace in the evening.

In the context of widespread mineral depletion and increased prevalence of toxins, 1 to 49 drops a day of Concentrace seems like a great experiment for self-hacking! Make sure to get some iodine too!