Where do we get the gold that’s in our body from?


Something we eat?

In: Biology

Some of the food we eat contains trace amounts of gold. The human body has very very little gold in it though. Like 0.2mg body

back up a second.

we have gold in our *bodies*?


Gold is, ever so slightly water soluble. In seawater that’s probably around 0.5 part per trillion. This is much less than it’s average occurence in the earth’s crust which is about 20 parts per trillion. However that goes up with increased temperature in water deep underground. Certain groundwater sources from deep underground may have a much higher, albeit still minute gold concentration when they reach the surface.

If this water is absorbed by plants, tiny amounts of gold are deposited in the plant leaves by means of evaporation. This is still a pretty small amount of gold such that it’s difficult to detect without first drying the leaves then burning them to ash, thereby removing 99% of their mass. This raises the concentrafion to merely parts per billion. However the presence of gold in plants varies widely.

So, trace amounts of gold are found in fruits and vegetables that you eat. Most of it just passes right through your digestive system but a few tenths off a part per trillion dissolve in your bloodstream. Since water is constantly evaporating from your lungs and skin those organs slowly accumulate traces of gold. Note that the concentration of elements like lead, mercury, arsenic, cadmium, uranium and other goodies is far higher in these organs for the same reasons. These elements are vastly more water soluble than gold.

Salt, especially sea salt, is another common source of trace amounts of gold. Again most of that simply goes in one end and out the other. Note that t he concentration of gold in sea salt is still far to low to be worthwhile to mine it that way.