Close-up of Diatomaceous earth on a wooden surface

Diatomaceous earth is mineral dust. The fossilized remains of one-celled algae known as diatoms, it is mined from quarries. Best known as a natural alternative to traditional flea-control methods, Diatomaceous earth eliminates fleas, ticks and lice in both pets and their surroundings. It can also be used as an organic worming agent to kill parasites in pets and humans.

How it Works:

Diatomaceous earth kills intestinal parasites by physically injuring them. The microscopic shell particles slice up parasites harbored in the body. Because of the microscopic nature of this dust it poses no harm to humans or animals. D.E. is a natural way to kill parasites without chemicals.

Human Benefits

Many diseases in humans are parasitic in origin. Among them are some forms of fatigue, wounds and bowel problems. Diatomaceous earth has been approved by the FDA for human consumption and will destroy many internal parasites. It can be purchased online or at health food stores. Diatomaceous earth has been credited with increasing bone density and nail growth, lowering cholesterol, heavy metal detoxification, parasite control and cleansing the colon and intestinal systems.

Dosage and mixing

Individual dosages vary. Manufacturers recommend one heaping tablespoon daily. Reports run the gamut between a heaping teaspoonful in a smoothie two to three times a week to a tablespoon each morning and evening with water. Take into account your size, weight and desired result. As with all new health routines, proceed cautiously. There can be health problems associated with evacuating too many parasites too quickly from your body.

When mixing your D.E., remember it is texture and weight, more than taste, that will pose the challenge to a smooth mixture. Some people use a blender to get a smooth drink. D.E.'s taste is virtually undetectable, extremely bland, sometimes described as chalky. It is easy to whisk a teaspoon to a tablespoon into a small glass of water and chug it down. Expect a clay-like texture that varies in consistency depending on the amount of water you use. Try adding it to a blended drink. D.E. is similar in weight to protein powder and will mix easily into your blended concoction. Diatomaceous earth can be used in conjunction with other parasite cleanse products or on its own to maintain your system's health.


Only consume D.E. labeled as "food grade." Diatomaceous earth sold for swimming pool filters has been chemically treated and heated to change its composition. It is not "food grade" and is dangerous to humans, pets and livestock. The caution on organic diatomaceous earth is against inhaling it. This otherwise safe product is made from ground fossilized remains which are unhealthy to breathe.