What happens if you eat Silica Gel?

You know those little packets that keep things dry in everything from pill bottles to computer parts. It says its a drying agent, so would it mess with your body fluid levels or what? Is it very dangerous, or would you just get a major case of cotton-mouth?


Well I have a very obscure reference to silica gel being ok to ingest in small quantities. There is some company selling kitty litter with silica in it to “absorb” odor. They say it is safe if accidentally ingested (I assume they mean by babies, or maybe cats that eat their own feces.

here is the page: http://www.justlitter.com/

I don’t know what the FDA approves for an accidentally ingested quantity… but I would have to say

If you must take Silica Gel, do it responsibly and in moderation. If you just can’t help yourself make sure you drink plenty of fluids and stay close to a phone with functional one and nine buttons.

I am sure you could get rich by selling silica capsules, just tell people that it absorbes a bad body compound that makes you weigh more. They don’t have to know that it is water. You may notice some side effects: dry mouth, dry stool, trouble urinating, sudden death.

Reminds me of one of this hair re-growth commercials. It’s all natural and drug-free. Then the describe it’s molecular mechanism (how can that be drug free). Example, it mops up the “bad body chemical” DHT. Just because it is implicated in natural alopecia does not mean that it doesn’t serve some important purpose and therefore blockade could lead to side effects. Drug free my arse.

It would be kind of cool if it turned you into a dessicated mummy. Well, not you specifically…

One site says why you shouldn’t eat it, while another site says not to worry to much about it if you do, though the Answer Geek at the second mentioned site dodges the question.

One other site even brought it up as a contender for removing salt from an over salted stew or sauce, but it seemed to be partially in jest.

Perhaps it’s time for someone to write a research grant proposal.

Mashie…You don’t know how much I needed the laugh you just provided. Thank you. Its been a tough day. If you EVER find yourself in Prague, I owe you a night of beer. Again, thank you! :slight_smile:


Silica gel is just glass chemicaly speaking. That particular gell is probably a glass made with pores just the right size for water to get in. If you ate silica gel it would probably just give you a bit of indigestion. Some products will use calcium carbonate. Same deal there. not really any more hazardous than eating small rocks. (Of course it could absorb water from your system, but I don’t think enough to do reall damage.)

The West Virginia Poison Center receives numerous calls concerning the ingestion of silica gel packets. A mother calls,
concerned because her 10-month old daughter has just swallowed a packet, or a concerned pet owner calls in fear for her
rottweiler who has just chewed a packet. In fact, silica gel is non-toxic, and will not poison your child or pet. These packets
can be a choking hazard, however.

Ah-ha! I actually have something potentially useful to add to this.

My wife buys silica gel ( at least that’s what it says on the bottle ) in a liquid form and takes it like vitamins! It’s supposed to be good for the skin, nails an hair and what-not. She has a book about it even. I don’t know if it’s the same thing, but it does say " silica gel " on it.
I was pretty surprised when I saw the bottle, especially since it didn’t say DO NOT EAT.

Tomcat, do not let the misleading answers above sway you. Silica gel is insidious. When ingested the individual silica beads migrate through the bloodstream to the chest wall where they attach themselves to the ribcage, directly behind the nipples. Don’t ask me how they know, they just do. That’s part of the insidiousness. Once attached they begin absorbing moisture from the host body. This moisture absorbtion causes the surrounding tissue to swell. You know what that means, don’t you? That’s right, man-boobies. Honking big hairy man-boobies.

But that’s not even the worst part. All that moisture has to come from somewhere. Your body is 80% water, so there is plenty of moisture available. The relocation of this moisture mass causes other parts of the body to contract while the man-boobies grow. Bone structure puts an upper limit on contraction, so in most places you just look skinnier. But there is one area of the male body not supported by bone structure. It just swings in the breeze, so to speak. Can you guess where that is? Right again! It’s Junior and the boys! They just keep losing moisture mass until the dry shell shrivels up and falls off. In short, ingestion of silica gel will turn you into a girl. A skinny girl. Ever heard of a man named Calvin Flockhart? He goes by ‘Calista’ now, ever since “the incident”. Silica gel - say no, or join N.O.W.

If you’re already a girl, handy’s answer will do.

Doctor Jackson is to medicine what Reverend Jackson is Christianity.

Nevertheless, Dr. jackson you neglected to meention the proposed higher incidence of Breast cancer among Silica Gel Breast Implant patients. I would think this would be a major factor in your decision to eat Silica Gel. So don’t be swayed by Dr. Jackson’s grande descriptions of the Utopia you would feel with huge man-breasts. It is not all it is pumped up to be when you get Breast cancer and sue your shoe manufacturer for Millions for providing Silica Gel packets without describing this side-effects in great detail.

I believe that breast implants are made of silcon oil not silica gel. Silicon oil has more potential to do damage since it is soluble in organics. I’m not commenting on the actual toxicity of silicon oil. I don’t know.

Well, according to an episode of Seinfeld, you become quite ill. If you decide to experiment, make sure that no one’s reprogrammed your speed dial :wink:

I spoke to a guy who worked in a company that made silica gel once. I asked him the same question.

He did not know either.

After mentioning this to http://www.iantheterrible.com , he mentioned that a goofy friend of his ate some once.

Cotton mouth from hell.

“… whats up doc…”