Written by Suresh Nair, PhD
Last modified: September 12, 2022
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You may have noticed that some supplements contain a “Carbonic Organic Acid Blend” of Humic Acid and Fulvic Acid. But just what is humic and fulvic acid and what possible benefit can it have in a supplement?
What Is Humus?
Humic and fulvic acids can best be described as “loose assemblies of aromatic organic polymers” which are naturally present in humus, or so-called “humic shale” in soil, sediment, and watery environments.
Humus (not to be confused with hummus, the savory dip that’s delicious with veggies and crackers 🙂 ) is a thick, dark brown or black organic material that forms in the upper layers of soil. It comes from plant and animal remains that decay into their most basic chemical elements, thanks to the action of microorganisms or microbes in the soil.
Many of these chemicals are very important nutrients for plants, bacteria, and other organisms. Humus is vital for plant health – and both humic and fulvic acids are common soil additives.
They help to make soil more fertile, allow air and water to move easily through soil, and make vital oxygen more accessible to plants – especially their roots.
Fulvic Acid Is a Type of Humic Acid
Structurally speaking, humic and fulvic acids are unique, complex mixtures of many different molecules with similar chemical properties. In fact, you could say that fulvic acids are actually a type of lightweight humic acid with high oxygen content.
Fulvic acids have nutritional benefits, while non-fulvic humic acids act to protect living organisms – both plants and animals – against viruses and bacteria. Together, they also help to form a unique, highly efficient delivery system for vitamins and minerals, enabling maximum nutrient absorption, retention, and use.
What Is Humic Acid?
Humic acid molecules are larger and more complex than fulvic acids. They also contain more positively charged particles, mostly metals, that act as minerals in the soil.
Further, humic acids have been shown to improve plant growth rate better than standard fertilizers, without associated toxicity. When taken up by plants, humic acids help them to sustain a healthy, physiologically active state for a longer period of time.
Humic acids chelate (bind strongly) to so-called “heavy metals” including ferric iron, lead, and copper, as well as pesticides and other pollutants, making them very effective in helping to eliminate many of the toxic waste pollutants contaminating our soil and water today.
What Is Fulvic Acid?
Fulvic acids are ultra-low molecular weight organic mixtures of different molecules with similar chemical properties, believed to have been generated by thousands of years of composting, or breakdown of plant and animal-based material in the soil. No wonder health experts call them the “last rung on the decomposition ladder.”
Where Does Fulvic Acid Come From?
Rare shale deposits – areas with multiple layers of compressed fulvic shale that are typically rich in minerals and trace elements – are rich in fulvic acids.
Their name derives from the Latin fulvus, indicative of their typical yellow color. Fulvic acids stabilize the soil and enable plants to easily take up and use the many vital nutrients they need. As mentioned earlier, they are absolutely essential for plant health.
Structurally, fulvic acids are very small “nanomolecules” containing highly active, or unspent, carbon, hydrogen, molecular oxygen, and up to 60 different minerals. They are soluble in water and all pH conditions (acidic, neutral, and alkaline).
Fulvic Acid Benefits: 8 Ways Fulvic Acid Supports Good Health
Fulvic acids have many vital actions in the body. In fact, life as we know it would not exist without them.
They are important for our health because they help to make nutrients readily available to us. They also balance and energize the body’s cells, along with helping to stabilize and maintain multiple biological processes within them.
Let’s take a closer look at some of the properties of fulvic acids to better understand their many health-giving actions in the body.
#1. Fulvic Acids Promote Gut Health
Fulvic acids improve gut health, most likely because they contain nutrients that support the growth of beneficial bacteria in our gut.
Indeed, consumption of fulvic acids has been shown to reduce the incidence of digestive disorders such as SIBO (small intestine bacterial overgrowth) and inflammatory bowel disorders, along with reducing constipation, diarrhea, bloating, and food sensitivities.
Interestingly, an ancient natural remedy found mainly in the Himalayas known as “Shilajit” has been used for hundreds of years in traditional Indian Ayurvedic medicine to treat poor digestive and immune health.
Shilajit is also believed to be formed over centuries by the gradual decomposition of certain plants by microorganisms – and in fact, 60%-80% of Shilajit is made up of fulvic and humic acids.
#2. Fulvic Acids Help to Balance Our Electrochemistry
Fulvic acids are powerful electrolytes that help to keep the body’s electrochemistry in balance and keep our cells optimally charged and healthy. This makes fulvic acids powerful protective agents against aging- and disease-related degenerative processes.
Fulvic acids are able to conduct electric currents when dissolved in water or other liquids, helping to maintain the health of our cells by balancing their electrical potential and allowing the free flow of electrons and other ions.
Cellular electrochemical balance can be negatively affected by a number of factors, including fluid loss, emotional stress, sleep deprivation, lack of exercise, and poor nutrition. By maintaining the electrochemical balance in our cells, fulvic acids help to defend them against harm and may even help to prolong their lifespan.
#3. Fulvic Acid Boosts Nutrient Transport and Utilization
Amazingly, fulvic acids can bind to up to 60 times their weight in nutrients! In fact, mineral absorption without prior chelation by fulvic acids is only about 10% as effective. Fulvic acids also allow minerals to regenerate and interact with one another, enhancing their availability.
Fulvic acids transport nutrients very efficiently to the body’s tissues. This is because they are easily absorbed into the bloodstream through our gut. This dramatically increases the body’s ability to absorb them and boosts our overall health and well-being.
Further, because of their very low molecular weights, fulvic acids can easily pass through the protective membranes of cells in nearly all of the body’s tissues, helping to absorb nutrients such as vitamins and minerals – and even other supplements – faster and keeping them in the body longer.
In general, fulvic acids improve the overall retention, absorption, and utilization of nutrients present in our food and supplements. In fact, without fulvic acid, vitamins and minerals are of very little use to the body.
#4. Fulvic Acids Counter Free Radical Damage
In combination with active carbon and high molecular oxygen, fulvic acids are powerful antioxidants and cleansers, acting to counter harmful oxidative damage caused by free radicals.
When fulvic acids encounter free radicals, they provide equal and opposite charges which neutralize them, thereby protecting our cells and cellular components from the damaging effects of oxidation.
In other words, fulvic acids are crucial for the prevention, even reversal, of health conditions associated with free radical damage caused by environmental toxins and pollutants, thereby helping to slow the aging process.
#5. Fulvic Acids Dramatically Improve Metal and Mineral Availability
Fulvic acids also chelate and form strong complexes with many metals, including “ferric” iron, aluminum, and copper, increasing their ability to dissolve in water. In the process, these metallic minerals dissolve into ionic form, merging into the fulvic structure and becoming biochemically reactive and mobile.
In other words, fulvic acids transform minerals and metals into elaborate fulvic acid-based complexes with vastly different properties than their previous metallic mineral forms.
In this way, fulvic acids in the soil make minerals and metals more readily available to plants. For instance, iron is normally not very mobile. However, it is easily taken up by plants thanks to fulvic acids. Fulvic acids also help to dissolve and transport vitamins, coenzymes, and other necessary substances from the soil into plants.
Similarly, fulvic acids chelate heavy metals in the body, allowing them to move more easily and making them more readily available for the body to expel.
#6. Fulvic Acid Is a Powerful Detoxing Agent
Fulvic acids can bind to pollutants such as pesticides and herbicides, catalyzing their breakdown and dispersal.
Similarly, fulvic acids help chelate and remove accumulated waste and toxic materials from our body. Radioactive substances also react rapidly with fulvic acids to form inactive complexes that can then be removed from the body.
#7. Fulvic Acid Enhances Vitamin Activity
Thanks to scientific advances, many common vitamin deficiency diseases have been reduced or eliminated because of our increasing awareness of the role of vitamins in nutrition. However, vitamins cannot function efficiently without the presence of certain specific mineral “cofactors.”
As we know, fulvic acids chelate and bind many minerals into bioavailable forms that can easily be used by our body, thereby providing vitamins in our body with their essential cofactors.
Not only that, fulvic acids are also very efficient transporters of vitamins into our cells.
#8. Fulvic Acids Help Protect Skin
Supplementation with fulvic acids has been shown to improve symptoms associated with eczema.
Topical application of fulvic and humic acids has been shown to protect the skin and help in treating wounds, scratches, and rashes. Fulvic acid has also traditionally been used as a remedy for poison ivy, poison oak, and athlete’s foot.
Reasons Why We’re Absorbing Fewer Nutrients
Our body is constantly under attack by hundreds of thousands of environmental toxins and pollutants. Further, thanks to modern farming practices, our soils have been contaminated by pesticides and chemical fertilizers that not only endanger our health but also contribute to soil erosion and nutrient depletion.
As a result, our foods contain far fewer nutrients, including fulvic acids, in much lesser quantities than before. In other words, nowadays we get fewer nutrients and our ability to properly use whatever nutrients are in our foods is also impaired. This weakens our immune system and makes us more vulnerable to infections and diseases.
Health experts say we need up to 90 different nutrients in our diets, more than 60 of which are minerals and trace elements. However, the sad fact is that we are simply not getting them from the standard American diet.
And although many people take various supplements regularly, the body cannot use many of the nutrients in these supplements without a helping hand from fulvic acids.
As you have already learned, fulvic acids are excellent natural chelators that bind strongly to nutrients, minerals, and metals to form stable, water-soluble complexes, dramatically improving their absorption and enhancing their bioavailability in the body.
Fulvic acids also help to restore the body’s optimal pH level, its defenses against harmful bacteria, fungi, yeast, and other infectious organisms.
With fulvic acid supplementation and a return to proper diet and farming practices, we can better fulfill our hope of living longer, healthier lives.
If you’re not getting all the nutrients and antioxidants you need from food, your best source is whole food vitamins. Organixx Multi-Vita-Maxx contains 21 uniquely fermented vitamins and enzyme-activated minerals that are more “bioavailable” and easily absorbed by your body than the synthetic compounds found in most supplements.
Suresh Nair, PhD, is a health writer who has written hundreds of informative blog posts, long articles, and eBooks on alternative health and nutrition since 2010. With a PhD in Molecular Neurobiology from UPenn and having been a laboratory scientist for 17 years, his content is always thoroughly researched and has a sound scientific basis. You can connect with him on Linkedin.
Humic and fulvic acids are “loose assemblies of aromatic organic polymers” which are naturally present in humus, or so-called “humic shale” in soil, sediment, and watery environments.
Humus is a thick, dark organic material that forms in the upper layers of soil. It’s made from the breakdown of plants and animals into their chemical elements.
Structurally speaking, humic and fulvic acids are unique, complex mixtures of many different molecules with similar chemical properties.
Fulvic acids are a type of lightweight humic acid with high oxygen content. They stabilize the soil and enable plants to easily take up and use the many vital nutrients they need.
Fulvic acids have many vital actions in the body. Life as we know it would not exist without them.
Here are 8 ways fulvic acids support good health:
- They promote gut health by supporting the growth of beneficial bacteria in our gut.
- They help to keep the body’s electrochemistry in balance and cells optimally charged and healthy.
- Fulvic acids allow minerals to regenerate and interact with one another, enhancing their availability.
- They are powerful antioxidants and cleansers, acting to counter damage caused by free radicals.
- Fulvic acids chelate heavy metals in the body, making it easier for the body to expel them.
- They can bind to pollutants (e.g., pesticides and herbicides) catalyzing their breakdown and dispersal.
- Fulvic acids are efficient transporters of vitamins into our cells.
- Topical application of fulvic and humic acids has been shown to protect the skin and help in treating wounds, scratches, and rashes.
Thank you for giving out this info. We take a fulvic-humic supplement 1-2 x/day. It helps us feel great, gives us energy and wouldn’t live without it!
You are absolutely welcome, TerriB!
Thank you for your feedback and for sharing your experience with us. It is great to hear that you are taking good care of your health by taking supplements with humic and fulvic acid. We hope you can also check out our very own products that use fulvic acid or humic & fulvic acid blend as mentioned in the article: https://organixx.com/supplement-product-review/.
We’d love to hear what you think of them. Have a great day ahead!
I have a question. Do you have a fulvic acid supplement ?(Video) Fulvic Acid Explained: Why Our Bodies Need Natural Compounds
Hi Shirlee, thanks for your question regarding fulvic acid.
We recently made a decision to move away from putting fulvic acid in our products for now.
For one, this is not an ingredient that can be sourced organically. As we move towards having the highest percentage of our product’s ingredients be organic, we intensely look at things like this and make the important decisions on whether to keep them or not, for the overall good health of our customers.
Secondly, although fulvic acid may help in the absorption of nutrients, our research has shown that fermentation is equally, if not more effective in increasing bioavailability. This is why we ferment many of our ingredients.
We welcome you to read this article on the importance of fermentation: https://organixx.com/fermented-supplements/
Finally, by taking out the fulvic acid we are making room to add more of the things that are proven to be beneficial, such as more mushrooms in our 7M+ product. (https://shop.organixx.com/products/7m-plus).
We hope this helps and wish you a lovely day!!
Hi , I have your turmeric, multi vitamin,joint complex, and ageless brain. Any chance of organic formulating a product for prostate health
Hi Aktham, Thank you for your support! 🙂 Currently, there are no plans for this type of product. However, we do evaluate our product offerings and make changes as needed. We take our customer’s concerns and suggestions very seriously. This information will be forwarded to management for further review and consideration. Rest assured your voice has been heard. Please stay connected with us so you will be one of the first to know of new product releases. You can sign up for our newsletter here: https://organixx.com/33-superfood-smoothie Wishing you a happy and healthy day! 🙂
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First, humic acid works in the digestive tract by binding with toxins. Since humic molecules are so large, our bodies will remove them and the toxins instead of absorbing them. Then, fulvic acid works at the cellular level by helping to improve cell permeability.What are the benefits of taking fulvic acid? ›
Fulvic acid might block reactions in the body that cause allergy symptoms. It might also interrupt steps involved in the worsening of brain disorders such as Alzheimer disease. Additionally, fulvic acid might reduce swelling and prevent or slow the growth of cancer.Does fulvic acid detox your body? ›
Fulvic acid has the ability to bind and eliminate toxins in the body such as heavy metals, making it a powerful detox ally. It will help you get rid of the toxins you've accumulated in time, so you'll notice a boost in energy levels, and your mood and sleep quality will improve significantly.Can you mix fulvic and humic acid together? ›
Humic and fulvic acids work well together, with each providing its own benefits for better plant growth. Humic acid improves soil health and growth, while fulvic acid naturally facilitates your plant's absorption and use of available nutrients.What does fulvic acid do for face? ›
Fulvic acid appears to assist in every stage of cellular rejuvenation. It helps to neutralize toxins and transport nutrients to skin cells. By improving cellular metabolism, fulvic acid can reduce inflammation and diminish wrinkles. After a single application, it also helps brighten, tone, and rejuvenate the skin.What happens if you take too much fulvic acid? ›
It seems to pose few side effects, mainly when taken in high doses. Fulvic acid helps detoxify the body, and in so doing may cause diarrhea, cramps, fatigue, headaches, or nausea. An overdose isn't possible, and it's completely natural. Fulvic acid is easily flushed from the system once consumed.Is fulvic acid good for hair? ›
Your hair can't grow or thrive without the proper building blocks, and you're unlikely to achieve optimal nutrition without a fulvic acid boost to your scalp and locks. fulvic acid benefits for hair include boosting your hair's natural keratin while it repairs your scalp and locks.
Early research shows that taking fulvic acid by mouth for 7 days might help reduce allergic reactions in people with allergies to pollen. Eczema. Early research suggests that applying fulvic acid 5% to the skin twice daily for 4 weeks might improve some symptoms of eczema.Is fulvic acid good for liver? ›
In the liver, fulvic acid can act as an antioxidant by uncoupling electron transport in liver mitochondria leading to a decrease in reactive oxygen species (ROS) production , which may explain the previous observation that OMC prevents HFD-induced increases in ALT activity .Can you take fulvic acid daily? ›
Moderate doses of fulvic acid and shilajit appear safe, though research is ongoing. A study in 30 men concluded that a daily dose of 0.5 ounces (15 mL) can be used safely without the risk of side effects. Higher doses may induce mild side effects, such as diarrhea, headaches, and sore throat ( 1 ).
Fulvic acid has ALL of these 70+ minerals. It is also a very small molecule. It is very easily absorbed by the body, crossing even the blood brain barrier.Does fulvic acid reduce inflammation? ›
Fulvic acid can help us to replenish what is depleted from our bodies. It offers numerous benefits, including reduced inflammation, stronger immunity, and improved brain function. It can treat numerous conditions and boost overall health.Does fulvic acid give you energy? ›
Improved energy levels.
The antioxidant properties of fulvic acid have been known to increase energy levels as well as reduce this toxic overload. This can help to energize all the processes in your body, including your immune system, liver, and ECM.
Fulvic Acid is considered to be one of the safest and most potent anti-viral substances available today. A generally accepted benefit of Fulvic Acid is that it can be used indefinitely for long periods of time without creating resistance.Can you use vitamin C and fulvic acid together? ›
Fulvic acid can be used on its own in a skincare product but it's great teamed with a vitamin C serum or sunscreen for a boosted brightening effect, says Colette. Fulvic acid has also been studied for its anti-inflammatory benefits, explains Dr Ejikeme, and it works to bring down skin redness and swelling.Is fulvic acid an antibiotic? ›
Fulvic acid is a novel antimicrobial molecule that is reported to have antibacterial and antifungal properties (van Rensburg et al., 2000).Does fulvic acid help with fatty liver? ›
Experimental results according to the present invention, fulvic acid showed an effect of restoring the liver function on alcoholic fatty liver and prevent and treat acute hepatotoxicity by CCl4.Do humans need fulvic acid? ›
According to Functional Medicine Medical Director Elizabeth Bradley, MD, there are promising signs that fulvic acid could be beneficial for people who have diabetes, Alzheimer's disease and inflammatory issues. But there isn't enough research yet to conclusively say it's safe or truly beneficial.Is there magnesium in fulvic acid? ›
Fulvic acid is rich in 72 trace minerals and vitamins, including silica, peptides and fragments of plant DNA and regulates minerals and nutrients like iron, magnesium, calcium and copper. This promotes the body's collagen response and can be seen in the health of hair and skin.Does fulvic acid increase iron levels? ›
FA proved to be a good iron source, and slightly increased the iron content of liver and kidney, but - up to a dietary iron level of 52.7 mg/kg - it did not influence the efficiency of iron absorption. Above a dietary iron level of 52.7 mg/kg down-regulation of Fe absorption can be assumed.
Although fulvic acid is not a prebiotic, it has been shown to stimulate probiotic activity. Probiotics then help boost immune system and overall health of your birds.When should I drink fulvic acid? ›
It's a good idea to take fulvic acid around the time of eating since it counteracts and detoxifies contaminants — such as pesticides, chemicals, etc., found in foods that are not organic. You can take it a half hour before eating or two hours after eating to improve detox abilities.Does fulvic acid dissolve kidney stones? ›
Fulvic acids in Fiuggi water demolish the crystal lattice of the calcium salts (oxalates, phosphates, etc) in kidney stones and form soluble calcium complexes. As a result, the stones are naturally dissolved and eliminated from the human body.Do you have to take fulvic acid on empty stomach? ›
Take with food
Since Fulvic enhances the absorption and utilization of all nutrients it comes in contact with, you will be getting maximum benefits from the nutrients in your food when fulvic is present.
Fulvic acid however helps prevent/contain this by providing the body with electrolytes, probiotics, fatty acids, and trace minerals, all which aid to better digestive health. These nutrients also help promote improved digestion, thus, a reduced risk of flatulence, constipation, or IBS.
Humic acid is a chemical produced by decaying plants. People have used it to make medicine. People sometimes use humic acid to stimulate the immune system, for infections, and many other purposes, but there is no good scientific evidence to support any use.Which is better humic acid or fulvic acid? ›
Fulvic acids are more active than humic acids due to its oxygen content that is almost double the amount of humic acid. Fulvic acid is the most effective organic chelating compound and can be used through foliar application due its small molecular size and electrical charge which plant can immediately uptake.What restores the blood-brain barrier? ›
Vitamin B1 (thiamine) deficiency disrupts the blood-brain barrier, and supplementation restores its integrity (80-81). Researchers have also found that vitamins B12, B6, and B9 (folate) can restore the integrity of the blood-brain barrier in adults with mild cognitive impairment and elevated homocysteine.Can I take fulvic acid with food? ›
Taken with a meal, fulvic acid also helps your body with digestion! It works as a catalyst of nutrients. The electrolytes in fulvic acid actually help your body to absorb minerals better, the nutrition found in that meal's food, or additional minerals that are supplemented.What vitamin C should not be mixed with? ›
Vitamin C + Niacinamide
However, when you combine niacinamide with Vitamin C, they'll cancel each other out chemically, making both formulas ineffective on your skin. Niacinamide takes out all the good properties of Vitamin C and makes it into a substance that can cause redness and trigger breakouts.
AHAs and BHAs, such as glycolic, salicylic, and lactic acids should never be used with Vitamin C. Vitamin C is an acid, too, and is unstable, so the pH balance will be thrown off by layering these ingredients together and might as well be useless.What acids should not be used together? ›
- Retinoid or Retinol and Alpha Hydroxy Acid. ...
- Retinoid or Retinol and Benzoyl Peroxide. ...
- Retinoid or Retinol and Vitamin C. ...
- Retinoid or Retinol and Salicylic Acid. ...
- Soap-Based Cleanser and Vitamin C. ...
- Two Products With the Same Actives.
Overview. Humic acid is a chemical produced by decaying plants. People use it to make medicine. People take humic acid for stimulating the immune system and treating the flu (influenza), avian flu, swine flu, and other viral infections.What are the benefits of humic acid? ›
Humic acid neutralizes acidic and alkaline soils; regulates pH-value of soils, increasing their buffering abilities; and has extremely high cation-exchange properties. Benefits: Improves and optimizes uptake of nutrients and water holding capacity. Stimulates plant growth with its rich organic and mineral substances.What is the function of humic acid? ›
Humic acid increases nutrient uptake, drought tolerance, and seed germination. It increases the microbial activity in the soil, making it an excellent root stimulator. Humic acid increases the availability of nutrients in our fertilizers and in those already existing in your soil.What is the best source of humic acid? ›
The best source of humic acids are the sedimentation layers of soft brown coal, which are referred to as Leonardite. (pic. 1.2, pic. 1.3) Humic acids are found in high concentration here.When should I take fulvic humic minerals? ›
Taken with a meal, fulvic acid also helps your body with digestion! It works as a catalyst of nutrients. The electrolytes in fulvic acid actually help your body to absorb minerals better, the nutrition found in that meal's food, or additional minerals that are supplemented.Can fulvic acid cause headaches? ›
Soffer adds that fulvic acid may cause some side effects, as noted in previous research in animals. These include diarrhea, headache, and sore throat.Can you overuse humic acid? ›
People will also ask if it's possible to apply too much humic acid to the lawn and the answer is no. You won't harm the lawn with too much humic acid but for sure, you will waste it. In other words, throwing down more than the labeled rate will not hurt anything, but it certainly is wasteful and expensive.What are the 3 humic substances? ›
Humic substances in soils and sediments can be divided into three main fractions: humic acids (HA or HAs), fulvic acids (FA or FAs) and humin.
HOW TO USE YOUR CONCENTRATED LIQUID HUMIC ACID: For GARDENS/ POTTED PLANTS / TREES / SHRUBS: Mix 2-3 oz to each gallon of water. Apply solution around root zone of existing plants: Water in just enough to soak the root zone (up to 4 inches for most.) Apply as often as every two weeks.Is humic acid a prebiotic? ›
Humic acid helps support our gut microbiome by acting as a prebiotic fiber. The good bacteria in our GI tracts feed exclusively on these fibers, the standard American diet typically doesn't provide enough.What does humic acid bind to? ›
The capacity of humic acids to bind metal ions is, at most, equal to the number of titratable H+-ions divided by the valency of the concerning metal ion. It is concluded that metal humates belong to the polynuclear chelates with cations binding predominantly to negatively charged ligand groupings of the humic acids.Is humic acid an antifungal? ›
The humic acid having antimicrobial activity inhibited the bacterial and fungal growth, and clear zones were formed after 24 hours which were measured in mm using zone reader.What is humic acid made from? ›
Humic acids are complex molecules that exist naturally in soils, peats, oceans and fresh waters. The one source of humic acids are the sedimentation layers referred to as Leonardite. These layers were originally deep in the earth's crust, but over many years have been exhumed to near-surface location.