Q: Dear Doctor, I have been a dirt clay addict for almost four years of my teen, could this mean I am likely to suffer from being infertile? Please help I want to stop.
A: Eating clay and other non-food items is referred to as pica consumption. Ingestion of clay is known as geophagia. Sometimes, this is associated with deficiencies of certain minerals or vitamins in the body, but some other times, you just can’t find anything that you can attribute the craving for. People eat clay for different reasons. Some claim to like the taste and the texture. More commonly, some pregnant women claim that it helps them to prevent the nausea and vomiting of early pregnancy.
Indeed, some new ‘regimens’ claim that clay has a detoxifying effect on the body when ingested. Well, I haven’t seen any evidence for this claim. There is however, evidence that some of these clay products eaten may be contaminated with arsenic or lead leading to arsenic or lead poisoning with attendant complications.
So, to answer your question simply, will this habit make you infertile? Maybe not, but it’s definitely not healthy. So, please see your doctor to confirm if you’re iron-deficient. If this is the case, correction of this may solve the problem. Otherwise, your doctor will work with you to find the reasons why you crave clay and alternatives to this.
For more on pica consumption, please click on this link: https://chatwithdrketch.com/2014/05/19/daily-health-tips-if-i-drink-water-when-i-am-pregnant-will-my-baby-be-born-with-a-cold/
Have a good night, people 😀