Boron: Benefits, Dosing, Where To Buy, And More!

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Key Information

Naturally occurring mineral

May boost testosterone

May enhance cognition

Anti-inflammatory properties

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Boron is an essential trace mineral that plays an important role in a number of biological processes.

Humans, as well as animals and plants, require boron to grow. There is evidence that it may also have nootropic benefits for:

  • Brain Fog
  • Cognitive enhancement
  • Anti-inflammation
  • Memory and learning

Low levels of boron are related to poor immune function, increased risk of mortality, osteoporosis, and cognitive deterioration.

Research continues to show the importance of maintaining proper levels of the often-overlooked nutrient.

Fortunately, you can make sure you are consuming enough of this key micronutrient by taking it in the form of a boron citrate supplement.

There are physical benefits as well as mental.

In trials, animals and humans that supplemented with boron had improved bone density, embryonic development, wound healing, and cancer resistance. It may also increase testosterone and libido in males.1Khaliq H, Juming Z, Ke-Mei P. The Physiological Role of Boron on Health Biol Trace Elem Res. 20182Abdelnour SA, et al. The vital roles of boron in animal health and production: A comprehensive review J Trace Elem Med Biol. 2018

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Where To Buy Boron

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Boron Glycinate by Nootropics Depot

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  • All-natural trace mineral traditionally used for bone health

  • Best used with Vitamin D and Magnesium

  • Can boost the effects of vitamin D

  • Shown to naturally boost SAM-e and NAD+ for improved methylation and cellular health

  • Boron Glycinate is the most bioavailable boron for best results

Boron is an essential trace mineral that plays a crucial role in many biological processes in the human body, including brain function. Recent studies have suggested that boron supplementation may have cognitive enhancing benefits along with its traditional use for bone health.1J G Penland. The importance of boron nutrition for brain and psychological function
Biol Trace Elem Res
. 1998

One of how boron may improve cognitive function is through its role in synthesizing and metabolizing certain neurotransmitters, such as dopamine and acetylcholine. These neurotransmitters are critical in regulating mood, attention, and memory, among other cognitive functions.2Recep Kucukdogru
, eta. Metabolic Brain Disease
August 2020

In addition to its effects on neurotransmitters, boron also appears to directly affect brain cells. Studies have shown that boron supplementation can cellular NAD+ status and SAMe.

Moreover, boron has been shown to reduce inflammation, which is a common contributor to cognitive decline. Chronic inflammation can damage brain cells and impair cognitive function, but boron’s anti-inflammatory properties may help to protect against this damage.

Finally, boron has been found to improve memory and concentration in both animal and human studies. In one study, subjects who received boron supplementation demonstrated significant improvements in cognitive performance, including better short-term memory and attention span.3Lara Pizzorno. Nothing Boring About Boron Integr Med (Encinitas). 2015

In summary, boron supplementation may offer a range of cognitive enhancing benefits, including improving neurotransmitter synthesis and metabolism, promoting neurogenesis, reducing inflammation, and enhancing memory and concentration. However, it’s important to note that the optimal dosage and long-term effects of boron supplementation are still being studied, and individuals should consult with their healthcare provider before starting any new supplement regimen.

Boron’s History

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Vegetables are a rich source of boron citrate, a necessary trace mineral

Boron’s history as a nutrient and preservative is a bit controversial.

In the 1870s, scientists discovered that Boron could be used as a food preservative as boric acid and borax.

For the next 50 years, borates were used to preserve many perishable foods.3Wiley H. Influence of food preservatives and artificial colors on digestion and health. I. Boric acid and borax Bureau Of Chemistry, USDA. 1904

However, a few decades later, high concentrations of boron were shown to cause health issues in humans.

Despite limited evidence, boron was pulled as a food additive in most countries.

As late as 1960, the WHO listed borates as a banned preservative.4Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives. Evaluation of the toxicity of a number of antimicrobials and antioxidants : sixth report of the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives WHO. 1961

Luckily, in the 1970s scientists began studying the use of boron in animals. They found that while too much boron can be toxic, too little can also be dangerous.

Boron started to come back in favor with nutritionists.5Hunt CD. Dietary boron modified the effects of magnesium and molybdenum on mineral metabolism in the cholecalciferol-deficient chick Biol Trace Elem Res. 1989

Now the accepted wisdom is that proper boron intake is necessary, and it only poses a problem if you supplement in exceptionally large amounts.

What Foods Contain Boron?

You can increase boron intake by consuming the following foods:6Nielsen FH. Update on human health effects of boron J Trace Elem Med Biol. 2014

  • Leafy greens
  • Non-citrus fruits
  • Dried beans
  • Nuts
  • Lentils
  • Avocados

What Does Boron Do?

Boron plays a critical role in several mental and physical processes.

Boron And Cognitive Performance

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Boron is a necessary trace element for proper cognition

Boron is vital for brain development and overall metabolism. This may give it cognitive enhancing properties as a supplement.

In one rat study, boron deprivation caused decreased high-frequency brain electrical activity and increased low-frequency activity.

Low-frequency brain activity usually means reduced mental alertness, lowered ability to perform vigilance and psychomotor tasks, and is related to impaired memory performance.

This pattern can indicate decreased arousal, suggesting that boron plays an important role in brain activation.7Lara Pizzorno. Nothing Boring About Boron Integr Med (Encinitas). 2015

In human subjects, lack of boron resulted in poor performance on tasks of motor speed and dexterity, attention, and short-term memory.

In a series of experiments conducted with otherwise healthy adults, researchers found that about a month or two of restricted boron intake adversely affected brain function and cognitive performance.8Lara Pizzorno. Nothing Boring About Boron Integr Med (Encinitas). 2015

Human subjects with low boron also performed poorly on tests of mental ability and awareness.9James G. Penland. The importance of boron nutrition for brain and psychological function Biological Trace Element Research. 1998

These results point to boron’s importance in maintaining proper brain health and performance.

Many anecdotal reports claim that boron supplements can reduce brain fog and mental cloudiness.

Boron and Testosterone

Boron citrate testosterone
Boron may increase testosterone levels, leading to more sexual desire.

Boron has a reputation as a testosterone booster among bodybuilders.

Other nootropics users may also be interested in the effects of more testosterone, even if they aren’t hitting the weight room.

So is this just locker room talk or is there data to back this up?

It turns out there IS some clinical evidence that boron may increase testosterone, although the results are mixed overall.

There are a few human trials that conclude that boron can increase plasma testosterone concentrations when taken as a supplement.10Naghii MR, Samman S. The effect of boron supplementation on its urinary excretion and selected cardiovascular risk factors in healthy male subjects Biol Trace Elem Res. 1997

Another study found that rats that consumed boric acid had a significant increase in plasma testosterone levels after 4 weeks.11M.R.Naghii, S.Samman. The effect of boron on plasma testosterone and plasma lipids in rats Nutrition Research. 1997

However, the jury is still not out on this. There are other trials that looked at both male and female participants, including bodybuilders, who consumed boron supplements.

These trials could not find a relationship between boron and testosterone levels.12Ferrando AA, Green NR. The effect of boron supplementation on lean body mass, plasma testosterone levels, and strength in male bodybuilders Int J Sport Nutr. 199313Green NR, Ferrando AA. Plasma boron and the effects of boron supplementation in males Environ Health Perspect. 199414Meacham SL, Taper LJ, Volpe SL. Effects of boron supplementation on bone mineral density and dietary, blood, and urinary calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, and boron in female athletes Environ Health Perspect. 1994

Keep in mind that none of the above studies look at large sample sizes over long periods of time.

So, we still need more research to determine if there is a connection.

Is Boron Good For Inflammation?

Boron is a potent anti-inflammatory supplement that may help prevent arthritis, improve immune response, and even potentially treat cancer.

Boron limits oxidative damage by enhancing the body’s stores of glutathione.

Glutathione is the body’s most abundant antioxidant compound. Increasing levels could reduce cellular damage and inflammation.15Ince S, et al. Protective effects of boron on cyclophosphamide induced lipid peroxidation and genotoxicity in rats Chemosphere. 2014

This means it could alleviate symptoms of inflammatory diseases, such as arthritis.16Richard L. Travers. Boron and Arthritis: The Results of a Double-blind Pilot Study Journal of Nutritional Medicine. 1990

Boron can help overall immune function between lymphocytes and natural “killer cells” in humans and animals.17Curtis D. Hunt. Dietary Boron: An Overview of the Evidence for Its Role in Immune Function The Journal of Trace Elements in Experimental Medicine. 200318Bhasker TV, et al. Influence of boron supplementation on performance, immunity and antioxidant status of lambs fed diets with or without adequate level of calcium PLoS One. 201719Kurtoglu V, Kurtoglu F, Akalin PP. The effects of various levels of boron supplementation on live weight, plasma lipid peroxidation, several biochemical and tissue antioxidant parameters of male mice**: Effects of boron on performance, antioxidant and some metabolits of mice J Trace Elem Med Biol. 2018

There is some evidence that boron may have the ability to treat certain forms of cancer.

Several studies indicate that boron can inhibit the growth of prostate cancer, reduce the risk of prostate cancer incidence, and enhance the effectiveness of other anti-cancer agents.20Cui Y, et al. Dietary boron intake and prostate cancer risk Oncol Rep. 200421Barranco WT, Eckhert CD. Boric acid inhibits human prostate cancer cell proliferation Cancer Lett. 200422Barranco WT, Hudak PF, Eckhert CD. Evaluation of ecological and in vitro effects of boron on prostate cancer risk Cancer Causes Control. 2007

There is also evidence that boron may be able to halt the proliferation of some forms of breast cancer.23Anuoluwapo Funmilola Elegbede. Boric acid inhibits cell growth and induces apoptosis in breast cancer cells UNLV Retrospective Theses & Dissertations. 2007

In fact, there are now several cutting edge cancer therapies that use targeted boron derivatives.

However, these treatments fall outside the realm of dietary boron supplements.

How Boron Works In The Brain

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Boron is a naturally occurring trace metal

This essential mineral seems to have a holistic effect on the body and mind by helping regulate a few different metabolic processes.

Regulates SAM-e

Boron is a critical component in the synthesis of S-adenosyl methionine, otherwise known as SAM-e.

This compound is crucial in regulating other neurotransmitters, such as dopamine, serotonin, and norepinephrine.

This could play a big part in improving mental function for some people.24Nielsen FH. Update on human health effects of boron J Trace Elem Med Biol. 2014

Binds To NAD+

Boron also strongly binds oxidized nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+), thus influencing reactions in which it is involved.

One role of extracellular NAD+ is binding to the plasma membrane receptor CD38, an enzyme that converts NAD+ to cyclic ADP ribose.

ADP ribosylation is a reaction that is involved in many crucial cellular processes, including cell signaling, DNA repair, and gene regulation.25Ralston NV, Hunt CD. Diadenosine phosphates and S-adenosylmethionine: novel boron binding biomolecules detected by capillary electrophoresis Biochim Biophys Acta. 2001

Increases Glutathione

Boron may also lower oxidative damage by decreasing the production of NADPH and the activity of λ-glutamyl transpeptidase.

This action could possibly increase the amount of glutathione in the body, which plays a role in protecting cells from toxic oxygen radicals. 26Hunt CD. Regulation of enzymatic activity: one possible role of dietary boron in higher animals and humans Biol Trace Elem Res. 1998

How Much Boron Should I Take?

For nootropic purposes, between 2-6 mg daily. 20 mg is considered the safe upper limit for adults.

However, you should never exceed 4,000 mg per dose, which may be associated with serious, even fatal, side effects.

Luckily, this dose is far beyond the normal range, so accidental overdose is unlikely.

Boron Potential Side Effects

In normal doses, boron is safe and should not have any side-effects. It is a naturally occurring micronutrient that your body needs to function.

However, boron overdoses may produce symptoms such as:

  • Skin inflammation and peeling
  • Irritability
  • Tremors and convulsions
  • Weakness
  • Headaches
  • Depression
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting

Boron Reddit Reviews

[su_quote cite=”oseres” url=””]I freakin love boron, it’s probably my favorite mineral by far. The benefits of boron are far reaching, I’m pretty sure our dna evolved with boron, and it’s used by all life.[/su_quote][su_quote cite=”excaliburrito8″ url=””]Boron works really well for vaginal bacteria! Keeps it in check. I take boron suppositories every now and then when I feel like I could use a “reset” like after a period or something. Great for BV (bacterial vaginosis)[/su_quote][su_quote cite=”Anonymous” url=””]I had shoulder pain which would affect lifts above my head like bench and shoulder press for about 2 years, Boron sorted that out within 3 weeks and still no sign of discomfort months later.[/su_quote]

Boron Amazon Reviews

[su_quote cite=”Dr. TP Alexander” url=”″]Very good product which allows me more energy than ever before.[/su_quote][su_quote cite=”Ted S.” url=””]I started to experience a new pain in my wrist. It might have been carpal tunnel syndrome. So I added BORON to my nutritional regimen. It’s been found that boron is extremely important in preventing arthritis pain. [/su_quote][su_quote cite=”Missblissful” url=””]This stuff really improved the quality of my life! Thank you Life Extension for providing such a life changing product. I take 6mg per day. If only I’d knew about boron sooner. I have had to suffer with arthritis, joint pain, and severe aching feet for several years. It was getting worst and worst. Got so bad that I could only be on my feet for 30 mins at a time. I couldn’t enjoy life like I use too. Didn’t want to go out with friends anymore. Didn’t want to work out anymore. Could hardly shop for groceries. [/su_quote]

Wrapping Up

Do you have questions about, supplementing with Boron? Do you have experience supplementing with Boron? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.

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Erik Abramowitz is a certified Nutritional Therapy Practitioner (NTP), Naturopathic Doctoral student, health coach, and father. He is the primary content creator for and the host of the Holistic Nootropics Podcast.

1 response to “Boron: Benefits, Dosing, Where To Buy, And More!”

  1. jackeline Avatar

    Is the citrate in boron citrate harmful to the body somehow?

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